Posts Tagged ‘prebiotics and cancer’

Fiber and Butyric Acid: What you Need to Know if you Have Cancer

In Alternative Cancer Therapies, Anticancer diet, Anticancer foods, foods for colon cancer, foods for breast cancer, Breast Cancer, Cancer, Cancer Coach, colon cancer, Estrogen and Breast Cancer, Healing Cancer Naturally, Hormone Balance, inflammation, prostate cancer, Uncategorized on January 26, 2021 at 7:07 am

Likely you have heard that eating a fiber-rich diet is good for your digestion and overall health, including gut health. A higher intake of dietary fiber has been found to increase the amount of butyric acid (butyrate) the gut produces. Butyric acid supports healthy digestion, the gut and microbiome, and reduces inflammation, all of which may help reduce the risk of various cancers. Excitingly, butyric acid also directly inhibits the growth of cancer cell development and growth.

What is Butyric Acid (BA)?

Butyric acid is saturated short-chain fatty acid with numerous health benefits. Increasing butyrate acid feeds the cells of your colon and improves the function of your digestive system. BA is created when the good bacteria in your gut break down dietary fiber. It is also found in animal fats and vegetable oils.

Much research point to butyric acid’s ability to help prevent or even help treat colon, breast, prostate, and other cancers.[i] It is recognized by the R.G.C.C test (aka the Greek test) as a cytotoxic agent.

Studies have found that BA blocks the growth of cancer cells and increases the rate of cancer cell death (apoptosis). It inhibits an enzyme called histone deacetylase, which is produced in most cancers. Inhibiting histone deacetylase initiates apoptosis, putting the brakes on cancer cell development and growth.

BA also halts some of the pro-inflammatory processes, which reduces oxidative stress and controls the damage caused by free radicals. More butyrate means less inflammation. The throes of inflammation have been linked to most, if not all, chronic diseases, including cancer.

Excess cortisol (stress hormone) is often produced when there is digestive stress. Cortisol triggers to release glucose into the blood, but cancerous tumors ignore this signal. As a result, excess cortisol tends to feed tumor cells. Cortisol also suppresses immune function, including natural killer cell count and activity, and thus interferes with the immune system’s ability to respond to cancer cells.[ii]

A high fiber diets encourages butyrate-producing bacteria in your colon to thrive, which preserves the integrity of your gut lining, protecting against leaky gut (with a bonus that it reduces bloat and gas), and reduces digestive stress. Gut bacteria also aid with the metabolism of estrogens, especially those associated with breast, ovarian, and thyroid cancers.[iii]

BA also help manage blood sugar levels and may help prevent weight gain, another two factors that influence cancer growth.

Anticancer Benefits of Butyric Acid:

  • Anti-tumor properties
  • Inhibits cancer development and growth
  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Supports the integrity of your gut lining, repairing and protecting against leaky gut
  • Improves insulin resistance and manages blood sugar leves
  • Regulates hunger and satiety, and helps maintain a healthy weight
  • Supports immune function
  • Aids in the metabolism of estrogens

ow to Incorporate Butyric Acid into Your Diet

Butter and ghee are two of the best dietary sources of butyric acid. Some cheeses (such as Parmesan) contain this as well. Conversely, diets high in processed foods and low in fiber can disrupt butyrate production.

Good Sources of Butyric Acid:

  • Ghee
  • Butter
  • Parmesan cheese
  • Red meat
  • Sauerkraut
  • Goat, cow, and sheep’s milk

However, the amount of butyric acid found in foods like butter and ghee (probably the richest source) is small compared to the amount that can be made in your gut. Increasing your dietary fiber intake will help boost the amount of butyric acid produced in your gut. Something known as resistant starch feeds the friendly bacteria in your gut and increases the production of butyrate acid.

Resistant starch (RS) is starch that is resistant to digestion, and functions kind of like soluble fiber. As the fibers in resistant starch ferment, they act as a prebiotic and feed the good bacteria in the gut. The bacteria in your gut depend on the resistant starches that your body cannot break down. RS not only benefits digestion, but improves insulin sensitivity, lowers blood sugar levels, and reduces appetite.

RS can be found in fiber-rich fruit, whole grains, legumes, and some vegetables such as Jerusalem artichokes and cooked (and cooled) potatoes. Cooking and then cooling starchy foods such as potatoes increases the resistant starch content (it is fine to reheat them after they have cooled for a few hours or overnight).

Good Sources of Prebiotics and Resistant Starch:

  • Artichokes
  • Jerusalem artichokes
  • Garlic
  • Onions
  • Asparagus
  • Chicory root
  • Potatoes (when cooked and cooled)
  • Bananas (under ripe)
  • Apples
  • Carrots
  • Oat bran
  • Beans

While it best to help your gut make its own butyric acid, you can complement this with a supplement – especially if your diet is less than optimal or if you have cancer and would like a bit more support.

Calcium-magnesium butyrate works well for most people. Sodium butyrate and sodium-potassium butyrate may be good choices for serious athletes or others who lose a significant amount of sodium through sweat. Sodium butyrate is not a good choice for those with sodium-sensitive hypertension.  The recommended dosage is 150-300 mg per day.

The above information is not to be considered to be a cancer treatment, but rather to provide information that may improve health. The information provided is for general information only. No online site should be used as a substitute for personal medical attention. If you’d like more guidance, I’d love to work with you! Check out my “Contact Us” page or email elyn@elynjacobs.com for more details.


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

Elyn Jacobs is a breast cancer survivor and holistic cancer strategist who helps people make healthier, less-toxic choices for their healing. She emphasizes the importance of not just surviving cancer but surviving well and reducing the risk of recurrence. Elyn specializes in understanding the role of estrogen in breast cancer and debunks the myths associated. 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 and the creator and host of the Survive and Live Well Radio Show. To contact Elyn, visit http://www.elynjacobs.com. Elyn offers consults via Skype, phone, or in-person. Elyn does not provide online advice.

Elyn Jacobs does not provide medical advice. The information provided is for general information only. No online site should be used as a substitute for personal medical attention.

This information is for educational purposes only and is not a recommendation to forgo medical advice and treatment. This post 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. The information provided is from my research and not to be taken as scientific evidence.

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[i] https://pubmed.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/24086397/; https://ar.iiarjournals.org/content/39/9/4659; https://www.sciencedirect.com/topics/nursing-and-health-professions/butyric-acid

[ii] https://news.stanford.edu/news/2000/june28/breast-628.html#:~:text=For%20instance%2C%20cortisol%20causes%20normal,tumor%20cells%20over%20normal%20ones.

[iii] https://medicalxpress.com/news/2011-10-microbiome-role-cancers.html