Breast cancer—more confusion & false hope about genetics

While continuing to keep the number one cause a secret

Walk for the cure, hope & pray for a miracle, get routine screenings and keep on doing what you’re doing—while everyone in the huge cancer industry keeps getting paid.

All week long, we’ve been hearing about the new findings on breast cancer that “are fundamentally reshaping the scientific understanding of the disease.” It’s been in all the newspapers and on the morning and evening news of every network. You would think that someone had discovered a pill that would have ended all cancer forever.

Apparently, the researchers have identified four genetically distinct types of the cancer. That means that, depending on every person’s genetics, they think that they will be able to deliver a custom drug to every individual. So what does all of this mean? Five things come to mind:

  1. To the average viewer, “No need for me to change anything that I’m doing, because there’s going to be a drug coming out soon that will knock out my cancer if it’s diagnosed. Isn’t modern medicine a wonderful thing?”
  2. It reinforces the treatment paradigm that has not worked for 41 years (when we declared war on cancer) and that is watch your risk factors, get screened regularly and take action (drug, chemo, surgery, radiation) after you are diagnosed.
  3. It means continuation of the “status quo” with regards to our vast inter-connected system of food-science-medicine-government-insurance-media. No lifestyle changes necessary—which is just the way the system likes it. Everyone continues to get paid as usual.
  4. It means that the cost of health care keeps going up at the same torrid pace. Do you think creating custom drugs for everyone is going to be a bargain? These are exactly the kinds of things that will bring our cost of health care to the previously predicted 31% by 2035. When does the madness end?
  5. Finally, it means that millions of people will suffer and die needlessly from preventable diseases—because they were never told the truth about the leading cause of  breast cancer, all other cancers, heart disease, stroke, Alzheimer’s, type 2 diabetes and every other chronic disease known to mankind.

It’s the food!

Meanwhile Gina Kolata of the New York Times writes that this wonderful news has “electrified” the field. This, in spite of the fact that any transformative new treatments are an unspecified number of  “years” away from reality. From Gina’a article:

Researchers and patient advocates caution that it will still take years to translate the new insights into transformative new treatments. Even within the four major types of breast cancer, individual tumors appear to be driven by their own sets of genetic changes. A wide variety of drugs will most likely need to be developed to tailor medicines to individual tumors.

The study was part of the NIH Cancer Genome Atlas. NIH HQ in Bethesda, MD — where not a single one of the 27 institutes is devoted to nutrition. Imagine the billions of tax dollars that are spent without ever telling us exactly what we need to do to be healthy.

A few excerpts (See link below) from all of those great minds who will spend their entire lives searching for the cure; almost like fiddling while Rome burns

  • “This is the road map for how we might cure breast cancer in the future,” said Dr. Matthew Ellis of Washington University, a researcher for the study.
  • “There are a lot of steps that turn basic science into clinically meaningful results,” said Karuna Jaggar, executive director of Breast Cancer Action, an advocacy group. “It is the ‘stay tuned’ story.”
  • “We now have a good view of what goes wrong in breast cancer,” said Joe Gray, a genetic expert at Oregon Health & Science University, who was not involved in the study. “We haven’t had that before.”
  • “There has never been a breast cancer genomics project on this scale,” said the atlas’s program director, Brad Ozenberger of the National Institutes of Health.
  • “It’s incredible,” said Dr. James Ingle of the Mayo Clinic, one of the study’s 348 authors, of the ovarian cancer connection. “It raises the possibility that there may be a common cause.”
  • “We are really getting at the roots of these cancers,” said Dr. Charles Perou of the University of North Carolina, who is the lead author of the study.

Dr. T. Colin Campbell, Professor Emeritus of Nutritional Biochemistry, Cornell University—author of The China Study

The Bottom Line. The entire system is excruciatingly frustrating and is incapable of fixing itself. Too much money riding on maintaining the status quo. We’ll need independent leadership to re-awaken the world to the incredible power of a whole foods, plant-based diet.

I should add that “the food” may not be the answer to preventing all cancer, but the percent preventable (with an optimal diet from birth) is very likely to be north of 75%. Dr. Campbell summed up our system dilemma in The China Study:

The entire system—government, science, medicine, industry and media—promotes profits over health, technology over food and confusion over clarity. Most, but not all, of the confusion about nutrition is created in legal, fully disclosed ways and is disseminated by unsuspecting, well-intentioned people, whether they are researchers, politicians or journalists.

Consecutive daily blogs (numerals from New Mexico)

The most damaging aspect of the system is not sensational, nor is it likely to create much of a stir upon its discovery. It is a silent enemy that few people see and understand.

Handy 4-piece take-charge-of-your-health kit—from

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J. Morris Hicks, working daily to promote health, hope and harmony on planet Earth.

For help in your own quest to take charge of your health, you might find some useful information at our 4Leaf page or some great recipes at Lisa’s 4Leaf Kitchen.

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Blogging daily at…from the seaside village of Stonington, Connecticut – Be well and have a great day.

—J. Morris Hicks, board member, T. Colin Campbell Foundation

About J. Morris Hicks

A former strategic management consultant and senior corporate executive with Ralph Lauren in New York, J. Morris Hicks has always focused on the "big picture" when analyzing any issue. In 2002, after becoming curious about our "optimal diet," he began a study of what we eat from a global perspective ---- discovering many startling issues and opportunities along the way. In addition to an MBA and a BS in Industrial Engineering, he holds a certificate in plant-based nutrition from the T. Colin Campbell Center for Nutrition Studies, where he has also been a member of the board of directors since 2012. Having concluded that our food choices hold the key to the sustainability of our civilization, he has made this his #1 priority---exploring all avenues for influencing humans everywhere to move back to the natural plant-based diet for our species.
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2 Responses to Breast cancer—more confusion & false hope about genetics

  1. Linda201 says:

    I dread October every year because I know that the constant barrage of messages about mammograms and fund raising for “the cure” is coming and I won’t be able to escape the frustration it causes me. One can’t even buy groceries without being hit up for a donation. I would gladly donate if the money were going toward educating women about a preventative diet rather than into the pockets of those involved in the breast cancer business.

  2. lisa says:

    Not related to this particular blog, but found this on mainstream media. There’s some confusion mixed in with the clarity, but it also provides good info. The dietician seems to get it. (copy and paste the http address).

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