Depends on what you consider “natural”. I support Integrative Oncology: using state-of-the-art chemo/radiation/surgery to cure cancer while integrating complementary treatments such as acupuncture, nutrition, massage, mind-body techniques to manage side effects. I am disheartened when my patients forgo traditional treatments with chemo, radiation or surgery to pursue “nature cures” like juicing, raw diets, or herbal remedies for cancer. None of which have been shown to cure cancer.

If you are considering a “natural cure”, check out ASCO’s 2014 Education book on Integrative Oncology. Written by two well-respected, active members of the Society for Integrative Oncology (SIO), this Integrative Oncology: an Overview provides the latest insights into natural remedies and the available data.

First, let’s look Dr. Deng and Dr. Cassileth’s take at why someone would be interested in “alternative” therapies.

In my experience, this list is accurate. The table below summarizes how an oncologist like myself would answer a patient interested in a “natural cure”.

Every day scientists and oncologists work towards a cure for cancer. We all wish there was an easy cure, like juicing or raw vegetables, but that is not the case currently. I consume fresh juice and raw vegetables myself. I recommend them to my patients….but not to cure cancer.

Dr. Norleena Gullett is a Radiation Oncologist at Erlanger Cancer Institute in Chattanooga, TN. In addition to her medical expertise, she strives to offer emotional, psychological, and spiritual support in her care for her patients. She prides herself on treating  you, the whole person, with the best care possible.