Medical Leaders Call for Emphasis on Cancer Prevention

(NECN/NBC News: Gabe Pressman) - Leaders in medicine and science strongly express a need for a new emphasis on prevention.

"232 million on prevention and 3.3 billion for treatment on the mechanisms of cancer," said oncologist Margaret Cuomo. "We need to have more balance and we need to focus more on prevention."

Time Magazine recently ran a cover story on cancer. Interestingly, in the 4,031 word article, the word prevention was mentioned only once. So, the prevention issue is not necessarily on the front burner of journalistic concern, but it is for the head of the American Cancer Society.

"I believe that we aren't doing a very good job in terms of cancer as far as prevention is concerned," said Otis Brawley, American Cancer Society. "I see a large problem with the obesity epidemic. The combination of high caloric diet, lack of physical activity and obesity is related to about a dozen different cancers."

Others agree that eating habits are vital. Scientist Ralph Moss has been fighting in the cancer war for more than four decades.

"The more we learn about the metabolic dimension of cancer, that's to sat the way cancer uses sugar as its energy, the more we realize you can actually impact the course of the cancer by what you eat," said Moss.

So what should you eat?

"There are many nutrients and targeted therapies for instance that can restore the ability of cancer cells to die normally …garlic, turmeric, which gives curry it's yellow color… broccoli, brussel sprouts, cauliflower, cabbage," said integrative oncologist Mitchell Gaynor.

Dr. Gaynor is considered an innovator, incorporating diet, music and sound wave treatments, in addition to the standards, like chemotherapy and radiation. One of his patients who endured lung cancer, breast cancer and ovarian cancer, believes in his methods.

"It's very relaxing and besides that we also talk about meditation," said patient Kate King Jones. "He gives all his patients numerous supplements to take."

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