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Losing good friends and reflecting on life

The worst thing about knowing others with brain cancer is that I keep losing good friends to it with alarming regularity.  My friend Tom Attwater passed away recently after suffering with the disease while selflessly helping his daughter by raising money for treatment for her neuroblastoma brain tumour.  His story is a remarkable one and it is well worth taking the time to read more about this extraordinarily kind, reflective family man before he succumbed to this cruel disease. I admired him very much and my thoughts are with his family at this incredibly difficult time.  http://www.mirror.co.uk/news/uk-news/terminally-ill-dad-who-raised-6546049

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My ‘zero carb’ Ketogenic cricket flour bread recipe

I made a (pretty amateurish!) video detailing the recipe for my Ketogenic cricket flour bread recipe. The beef dripping/tallow must be warm to mix well and it’s a good idea to add the egg after the fat and cricket flour has been mixed a little to bind together into a nice mixture. I use duck egg because the yolk is bigger and it gives the bread a richer taste.  The bread has no sugar, soy, wheat, gluten, dairy, or flavourings.  I hope you enjoy it.  http://youtu.be/zX0u1Ob_DAg I even had some for lunch today 🙂 http://youtu.be/0lrE0lWmZZs

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Xeroderma Pigmentosum variant biopsy

I had my biopsy for the Xeroderma Pigmentosum C variant today- the astrocytoma brain tumour risk one. Results likely December/January. If positive my tumour  (in the lab, I have no active disease on scans) will have to be tested for XP genes. Nothing to worry about whatever the results are because I feel I have everything under control right now but rather interesting in a strange way. The DNA blood samples weren’t too bad but my bum is a bit sore from the biopsy… Too much info maybe.

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Melatonin and cancer

Hmm…  ‘Melatonin prevents and delays chemical carcinogenisis and cancer growth in vivo in the mouse and rat. Blind people have robust, albeit mostly free-running melatonin circadian rhythms and they are at lower risk for the development of many, if not all, cancers. Women with breast cancer and men with prostate cancer have diminished nighttime melatonin secretion.’ http://link.springer.com/chapter/10.1007/978-3-642-59512-7_27

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“Sugar feeds cancer” is far too simplistic and doesn’t at all give you the full story.

Glutamine. Everyone forgets about glutamine… ‘… in many cancer cells, glutamine is the primary mitochondrial substrate and is required to maintain mitochondrial membrane potential and integrity as well as support of the NADPH production needed for redox control and macromolecular synthesis.’   http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC2917518/ This is why a restricted ketogenic diet for cancer management must restrict protein. Therapeutic fasts can also be  potentially very useful. 

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Can’t wait to be back at uni!

Next month will be very special for me. After 2 and a half years of recovery both mentally and physically from my brain haemorrhage that led to my cancer diagnosis and the subsequent problems associated with that I am finally ready to go back to my studies. It’s a huge thing for me and a big step as I still have invisible disabilities that affect me on a day to day basis despite my vast improvements I have made symptomatically and through positive scan results.  I have made the decision to study Human and Medical Science full time at the University of Westminster where my studies were cruelly cut short by this disease. Going back will feel quite surreal as I honestly never thought it would be possibly and I was unsure of my short term future but here I am! I still don’t look too far into the future but I am realistically optimistic.  I feel as though I can make a real difference with my studies and hope to push through with my own research through my personal experiences and my understanding of epigenetics. I have already decided to focus my degree on neurological disease management and will approach cancer as a metabolic disease as I have done with my own treatment since I voluntarily chose to stop my ineffective chemotherapy a year and a half ago.  I’m incredibly excited about this opportunity and I can’t wait to start. I see this as being the best avenue for me in order to be a proactive patient advocate. 

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Embarrasing for Heart Research UK…

Why? ‘Unlike skeletal muscle, heart muscle functions almost exclusively aerobically, as evidenced by the density of mitochondria in heart muscle. Moreover, the heart has virtually no glycogen reserves. Fatty acids are the heart’s main source of fuel, although ketone bodies as well as lactate can serve as fuel for heart muscle. In fact, heart muscle consumes acetoacetate in preference to glucose.’- Biochemistry. 5th edition. 2002

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Why?

Why do we do so many diet studies on mice when they appear to be so biologically different to humans in this study? http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/22838969/ and… Why don’t more ketogenic diet studies acknowledge the importance of omega 3 fatty acids like this one? http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/18447912/

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