June 7th, 2012Frustrated or Constipated
By: Yvonne L. Salcido MH, Holistic Iridologist
I recently read a frustrating article in the Deseret News: “Doctors to field colon cancer questions “Disease is Preventable If People Undertake Screening Measures.” According to this article colorectal cancer is entirely preventable by getting a colonoscopy and if cancer is detected it is almost always cured because of the screening measure.
The Center for Disease control stated that colon cancer is the third highest cancer in the country with 1.1 million Americans affected and Utahn’s having a higher rate on average. Dr. Tae Kim, colorectal surgeon, attributes the higher rate to “Utahns tend to live longer.”
Dr. Kim stated, “If we all lived long enough I’m certain that we’d all get colon cancer.” He compared our bowel to a copy machine sloughing the lining daily and then replicating it. This copying will allow opportunism for mutations such as growths in the colon called polyps. These polyps can lead to a deadly form of cancer. He then stated “Various prevention claims such as aspirin, medications, or eating healthier might take longer to produce results.” His final quote was “As long as we catch it early and people don’t wait for symptoms, something can be done about it.”
The claims in this article are causal, the statement “Disease is preventable if people undertake screening measures” leads one to believe that if you take the appropriate test you will not get the related disease. I find this faulty reasoning since the tests such as a colonoscopy detect problems, they do not prevent them. There is also the question of risks associated with the test and do these risks outweigh the benefits?
There are several risks in having a colonoscopy: perforation of the colon wall, bleeding, and heart problems to name a few. Risks seem to increase with age. There are alternative tests available that do not have these risks associated with them such as fecal occult blood tests and virtual colonoscopy.
I also found Dr. Kim’s statement “If we all lived long enough, I’m certain we’d all get colon cancer.” outlandish. Not everyone I know has colon cancer before they die. Yes we might live longer in Utah but that does not necessarily mean that is why we have more colon cancer. In Utah the percentage for smoking and drinking is lower but we also consume more pharmaceuticals, ice cream, sugar, and Jello. Could these play a role in colon health? Since the bowel is eliminating the waste from our food, what if the food we put in us is pretty much garbage before we eat it. Could this affect the overall health of our bowel and the ability to cleanse itself and assimilate the nutrients our bodies need? Lifestyle changes such as good nutrition, herbs, exercise, a good amount of sleep, and lowering stress levels are preventative measures to ensure one’s health.
The truth in regards to colon health is that a dirty colon is caused from the garbage we put in our mouth. An excellent book to educate on colon health is “Dr. Christopher’s Guide to Colon Health“. This book teaches the truth about the importance of keeping a clean and healthy bowel and the cause of disease.
Yvonne Lunt Salcido is a Student Adviser for and a Master Herbalist Graduate of the School of Natural Healing. She is a current student at Utah Valley University majoring in Health and Wellness Education.