Posts Tagged ‘Parsley and Cancer’

Potential Therapeutic Effects of Phytochemicals and Medicinal Herbs for Cancer Prevention and Treatment

In Alternative Cancer Therapies, Anticancer foods, foods for colon cancer, foods for breast cancer, Epstein-Barr Virus, foods that target cancer stem cells, High Dose Vitamin C and Cancer, Uncategorized on July 11, 2018 at 8:01 am

The following is an excerpt of my recently published article, Potential Therapeutic Effects of Phytochemicals and Medicinal Herbs for Cancer Prevention and Treatment. It was published in the journal Archives of General Internal Medicine (Arch Gen Intern Med 2018 Volume 2 Issue 3).

The current standard of care, surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation has not proved to be highly effective and comes with significant side effects and costs. Although conventional cancer therapy can target certain cancer cells and sometimes prevent relapse of the illness, complementary and alternative therapies are required due to disadvantages of the current therapies such as low effectiveness, adverse effects, or availability. Moreover, a number of studies have found adjunctive therapeutic approaches to improve outcomes for cancer patients. One potential complementary method with conventional cancer drugs involves the use of medicinal herbs and phytochemicals. The possible therapeutic benefits include, but are not limited to, anti-proliferative, apoptotic, anti-metastatic, and anti-angiogenic effects, of which have been demonstrated in in vitro experiments and some clinical trials.

Studies have revealed beneficial effects of medicinal herbs and phytochemicals against cancer by providing anti-inflammatory, anti-bacterial, antiviral, free radical scavengers in the form of cancer-fighting compounds. Phytomedicines have the ability to interact with signaling pathways that modulate cell growth, replication, and death of a wide variety of tumor cell types through diverse mechanisms. These phytocomplexes have the remarkable capability of affecting us on a cellular level – where diseases such as cancer originate. Many plant species are already being used to treat or prevent development of cancer outside of the traditional oncology environment, notably without harm to healthy cells.

During the last century, scientific knowledge about anticancer phytochemicals and herbs has remarkably progressed. Despite numerous reports of their effects on cancer, functional use for the prevention and treatment of cancer has been largely limited to self-care. Like most cancer drugs, the main mechanisms of action of plants include inducing apoptosis and inhibiting proliferation, growth, and migration. But unlike conventional cancer drug therapies, phytotherapies are cytotoxic to cancer cells and relatively non-toxic to normal cells. Moreover, use of phytomedicines may be an option for the prevention and treatment of cancer both with and without conventional drugs. In the event that conventional cancer drugs are not accepted due to their side effects or low effectiveness, phytomedicines offer an effective and viable alternative as they are considerably safe and relatively affordable. It is worth recommending application of phytomedicines as alternative cancer therapies for patients who do not benefit or face side effects from conventional drugs or alongside conventional treatments to improve efficacy.

There are two sections in this review, phytochemicals against cancer and medical herbs against cancer. As it was impossible for me to address hundreds of different phytochemicals and medicinal herbs in this one paper, I only focused on a few examples in each category. To read the article in full, please read: Potential Therapeutic Effects of Phytochemicals and Medicinal Herbs for Cancer Prevention and Treatment.

You may also enjoy my article published in the Journal of Cancer Biology and TreatmentEtiology of Chronic Disease: A Discussion on Epstein-Barr Virus.

In your good health,


~~If you don’t know your options, you don’t have any~~

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Elyn Jacobs is a holistic cancer strategist and speaker specializing in the prevention and treatment of cancer. She is a Contributing Editor for The Truth About Cancer and is on the Medical Advisory Board for BeatCancer.Org and the Advisory Board to the Radical Remission Project. Elyn has written for numerous journals and publications. She was the former Executive Director of the Emerald Heart Cancer Foundation. To contact Elyn, visit www.elynjacobs.com. Elyn offers consults via Skype, phone, or in person.


This information is for educational purposes only and is not a recommendation to forgo medical treatments. It is not intended to treat, cure, prevent, or diagnose any disease or condition. This post does not represent medical advice nor should it be considered to be medical advice or a replacement for medical advice.  I encourage you to discuss this information with your integrative oncologist, naturopathic doctor, or conventional oncologist and make your own decisions.  The information provided is from my research and not to be taken as scientific evidence.

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Chickpea-Celery Salad

In Uncategorized on April 26, 2014 at 9:06 pm

chix celeryThis is a great recipe that combines some very tasty, cancer-fighting ingredients. You can also make this with cucumbers instead of the celery should you have a bounty in the garden.

• 1/4 cup olive oil (or garlic infused oil, see below)
• 1 teaspoon ground cumin
• ¼ teaspoon dried crushed red pepper

• 2 15 1/2-ounce cans garbanzo beans (chickpeas), drained, or 1lb dried chickpeas, soaked overnight and cooked as directed)
• 3 or 4 stalks celery, chopped, about 2 cups
• 1/2 cup chopped fresh parsley (cilantro or dill work well too)
• 1/3 cup thinly sliced drained oil-packed sun-dried tomatoes
• 1/4 cup fresh lemon juice
• 1 garlic clove, minced (can omit and use garlic infused olive oil)

Combine oil, cumin and red pepper flakes in a large bowl (if you like, you can use 1 tablespoon cumin seeds, warm in olive oil with the red pepper flakes, but use very low heat; you can also add the garlic here. Cool before proceeding)

Add remaining ingredients. Season salad to taste with salt and pepper.

~~If you don’t know your options, you don’t have any~~

Elyn Jacobs is a breast cancer survivor, professional cancer strategist, speaker, and the Executive Director for the Emerald Heart Cancer Foundation. Elyn empowers women to choose the path for treatment that best fits their own individual needs. She is passionate about helping others move forward into a life of health and well-being. Elyn has been featured on CNN Money, Talk About Health, and Breast Cancer Answers and has written for the Pink Paper, Breast Cancer Wellness, Integrative Oncology Essentials, Surviving Beautifully, Body Local and more, and writes the Options for Life column for the Natural Healing-Natural Wellness Newsletter. Elyn hosts the Survive and Live Well Radio Show on the Cancer Support Network. Elyn lives in New York with her husband and two young boys. https://elynjacobs.wordpress.com/about/

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An Herb Garden to Fight Cancer

In Uncategorized on July 27, 2012 at 4:55 pm

Did you know that herbs contain powerful anti-cancer protection? Using herbs for cancer prevention and treatment is by no means a novel, modern or alternative practice. Herbs have been used in the treatment of cancer for many, many years and the constituent chemicals of plants have been the starting point for research and the creation of many modern medicines. However, today’s post will be on reaping the benefits from common garden herbs. Herbs are nature’s medicine cabinet.  So whether you grow your own or stop at the local farmers market, eat them daily for a powerful anti-cancer boost.

herb garden twoRosemary. The two key ingredients in rosemary, caffeic acid and rosemarinic acid, are potent antioxidant and anti-inflammatory agents, which help protect the body’s cells from damage by free radicals.  Rosemary has been found to detoxify substances that can initiate the breast-cancer process and it stimulates liver enzymes which inactivate estrogen hormones. Rosemary can inhibit the formation of HCAS, the carcinogenic compounds that form when you cook protein.

Dill contains antioxidant properties, and it also deactivates free radicals and neutralizes carcinogens that might find their way into our bodies.

Cilantro helps to remove heavy metals like Mercury from the body.

Mint has anti-bacterial, anti-inflammatory properties, helps prevent damage from radiation, and it cuts off the blood supply to tumors.. and may protect your liver too.

Parsley has potent anti-inflammatory and anticancer abilities. The phytochemicals in parsley can slow the speed of cell division, leaving time for the cell to correct DNA mistakes and activate apoptosis, and recent research shows that one particular compound, apigenin, found in celery, artichokes and herbs such as parsley may well be the key agent for killing breast and pancreatic cancer cells.

Basil has powerful anti-inflammatory and antioxidant properties. It contains flavonoids that help shield cell structures from radiation and oxidative damage, and may protect liver cells. Both fresh basil and basil oil have strong antibacterial capabilities, so by adding the herb or oil to your salad, you can help ensure your vegetables are safe to eat.

Oregano possesses anti-bacterial as well as anti-inflammatory properties, and encourages cell death making it a powerful anti-cancer herb; but what is really exciting is that may be particularly effective against prostate cancer and may even become part of the treatment for this cancer.   

Thyme possesses terpenoids which are recognized for their cancer preventive properties. Rosmarinic and ursolic acids are major terpenoids in thyme that possess anti-cancer properties. Thyme contains an essential oil that is rich in thymol, a powerful antiseptic, antibacterial, and a strong antioxidant.

In my house we eat a lot of tabouleh.  Tabouleh, tabouli, no matter how you say or spell it, is both delicious and good for you. What I love about it too is that it is versatile; for as many ways there are to spell it, there are just as many ways to make it. For this I head to the farmers market as I put A LOT of herbs in mine, far more than I can grow in my small garden.  Keep in mind that ideally, the salad should be green with specks of white, but make it whatever way you prefer.

Bulgur Tabouleh

1 cup Bulgur wheat (or Quinoa, see notes below)

1 1/2 cups boiling water

1 ½ tsp salt

¼ cup lemon juice (or more)

¼ cup olive oil, plus more (I like lemon infused, but any good quality, extra virgin is fine)

Parsley, mint, dill, cilantro (several cups/bunches of these, chopped, and any combination, created to taste)

Chopped tomatoes (optional)

Chopped, seeded cucumber (optional)

Finely chopped red onion or scallions (optional)

Chick peas (optional)

Pour boiling water over bulgur wheat and salt.  Cover wheat for 30 minutes and let sit on the counter.  Stir in lemon juice and oil, chill for 2-3 hours.  Add chopped herbs, and other ingredients of your choice and toss gently, adding more oil as desired.

I add chickpeas to make this salad a meal.  You can also substitute quinoa in this recipe.  For quinoa, bring 1 cup quinoa (rinsed well), ½ tsp salt and 1¼ cups water to a boil over high heat.  Reduce heat to medium-low, cover, and simmer until tender, about 10 minutes.  Remove from heat and let stand, covered, for 5 minutes.  Fluff with a fork.    If you want, you can spread the quinoa out on a large rimmed platter or baking sheet; let cool.  Transfer to a bowl and mix in the lemon juice and oil, then the remaining ingredients.

I love to marinate chicken, turkey, fish, zucchini and eggplant in olive oil and rosemary, and oregano and chicken are great together too.  Thyme is delicious on eggs. Dill is fantastic on cucumbers, fish and zucchini. Basil, well who doesn’t like basil and fresh ripe tomatoes? Add some onion too!  And don’t forget pesto; make some with basil or try cilantro (or spinach, kale, or arugula); use them on grilled foods, spread them on your sandwich.  Fighting cancer never tasted so good…oh, do I love summer.

Want to see more cancer-fighting foods and the recipes?  Please visit:



Like these tips?  Join me on my radio show, Survive and Live Well, for tips to treat and beat cancer. Join me weekly as we chat with the experts about treatment options and lifestyle choices that can help you not just treat cancer, but beat cancer, survive, thrive and live well.   At the end of each show I give my cancer fighting tip of the day, so tune in Tuesdays at 1pm, EST.




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Elyn Jacobs is a breast cancer survivor, professional cancer coach, radio talk show host, speaker, and the Executive Director for the Emerald Heart Cancer Foundation. Elyn empowers women to choose the path for treatment that best fits their own individual needs.  She is passionate about helping others move forward into a life of health and wellbeing. Elyn lives in New York with her husband and two young boys. To learn about Elyn’s coaching services, please visit:  https://elynjacobs.wordpress.com.  To tune into the Survive and Live Well radio show, please visit www.W4CS.com, Tuesdays at 1pm (EST). To view info on upcoming topics and guests, please visit: https://elynjacobs.wordpress.com/elyns-blog/.