How bacteria in your gut makes a meal out of cancer cells

Over the past five years, gut health has become a buzzword for those who want to feel better, fight off disease, and live longer.

And, with good reason…

Poor gut health has been associated with everything from weight gain and fatigue to irritable bowel syndrome, autoimmune problems, and heart and kidney disease.

Now, thanks to research, there’s another reason to focus on keeping your gut microbiome healthy and flourishing — fighting cancer.

Removing cancer’s “don’t eat me” tag

You see, cancer researchers are in the process of developing a brand new immunotherapy treatment to destroy the tumor cells that steal so many lives each year.

This therapy targets the protein CD47 which is expressed in high levels on the surface of many cancer cells, where it acts as a “don’t eat me” signal to the immune system’s white blood cells that would otherwise work to devour cancer.

However, the therapy known as anti-CD47, or CD47 blockade therapy, has shown mixed results in trials.

Until now…

The scientists knew that previous studies had shown that bacteria in the gut microbiome not only help the gut resist pathogens, but can also improve response to cancer immunotherapy.

So, they wondered if specific bacteria in the gut could make the new treatment more effective.

And, their theory was right!

Related: 3 ways digestion breaks your health and 8 tips to fix it

The researchers, from UT Southwestern Medical Center and the University of Chicago, used mouse models to prove that one specific intestinal microbe, known as Bifidobacterium has the power to accumulate within tumors, making them responsive to anti-CD47 treatment.

The team discovered that the combination of cancer treatment plus gut bacteria works via your body’s STING pathway of innate immunity — your body’s first line of defense against infection. When it kicks in, it rips off that “don’t eat me” sign and allows white blood cells to flood in and make a meal out of cancer cells.

Populating your gut

So, while anti-CD47 itself is still in trials, scientists now have a way to move those trials forward more quickly in order to combat cancer and give people everywhere a better chance of living cancer-free.

And, as we mentioned before, this isn’t the first study to demonstrate the benefits of using probiotics during cancer therapy, if you’re living with cancer, there’s no need to wait to leverage these powerful little bacteria.

Other studies cite probiotics as “A Promising Tool in Cancer Prevention and Therapy” and call out their “proven efficacy in reducing gut‑related and life‑threatening side‑effects” during anti-cancer care.

And, they’re all-natural and easy to include in your daily diet.

Rich sources of dietary probiotics include:

  • Kefir
  • Yogurt
  • Sauerkraut
  • Kimchi
  • Kombucha
  • Miso
  • Tempeh

You can even take a daily probiotic supplement to ensure that you’re getting optimal levels of good bacteria to help you keep a healthy balance in your gut.

And, there’s one more secret that can help you encourage gut health…

Prebiotics.

If you haven’t heard of them, prebiotics are compounds that serve as food for the good gut bacteria in your intestines. Basically, they’re a type of fiber that the friendly bacteria chow down on so that they can do their job better.

So, you need to address both your body’s pre and probiotic needs for the best gut health.

You’ll find prebiotics in foods like:

  • Onions
  • Garlic
  • Leeks
  • Asparagus
  • Jerusalem Artichokes
  • Apples

With this newest study to prove the power of gut health to influence whether or not cancer therapy works, it’s more vital than ever to make sure you’re taking steps every day to repopulate and feed the friendly bacteria that live inside you. And, that means using the foods above, along with supplements, to get probiotic and prebiotic healthy.

Editor’s note: Discover how to live a cancer prevention lifestyle — using foods, vitamins, minerals and herbs — as well as little-known therapies allowed in other countries but denied to you by American mainstream medicine. Click here to discover Surviving Cancer! A Comprehensive Guide to Understanding the Causes, Treatments and Big Business Behind Medicine’s Most Frightening Diagnosis!

Sources:

  1. How Your Gut Health Affects Your Whole Body — WebMD
  2. Could cancer immunotherapy success depend on gut bacteria? — EurekAlert
  3. Family Physician Shares Signs of Poor Gut Health — Piedmont Healthcare
  4. Benefits of using probiotics as adjuvants in anticancer therapy (Review)World Academy of Sciences Journal
  5. Probiotic Bacteria: A Promising Tool in Cancer Prevention and TherapyCurrent Microbiology
  6. Probiotics and Prebiotics: What’s the Difference? — Healthline
  7. The 19 Best Prebiotic Foods You Should Eat — Healthline

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Dr. Adria Schmedthorst

By Dr. Adria Schmedthorst

Dr. Adria Schmedthorst is a board-certified Doctor of Chiropractic, with more than 20 years of experience. She has dedicated herself to helping others enjoy life at every age through the use of alternative medicine and natural wellness options. Dr. Schmedthorst enjoys sharing her knowledge with the alternative healthcare community, providing solutions for men and women who are ready to take control of their health the natural way.