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What should I eat after Cancer Diagnosis?

is a very common question asked.​
Choose food and supplements personalized to your cancer, genes, ongoing treatments and lifestyle.

is a very common question asked. Choose food and supplements personalized to your cancer, genes, ongoing treatments and lifestyle.

Personalized cancer Nutrition Planning for only .

Personalized cancer Nutrition Planning for only​ .

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For Which Cancer Types Should I Avoid Feverfew Supplement?

May 20, 2021

Estimated reading time: 8 minutes
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Highlights

Nutritional supplements like Feverfew have many health benefits and are being widely used by cancer patients and those at-genetic-risk of cancer. But, is it safe to take Feverfew supplements for all types of cancer and without considering any ongoing treatments and other lifestyle conditions? A common belief but only a myth is that anything natural can only benefit me or do no harm. As one example, the use of grapefruit with certain medications is not recommended. Another example, the use of spinach with some blood thinning medications can cause adverse interactions and should be avoided. For cancer, nutrition which includes the food and natural supplements has been shown to influence outcomes. Hence a frequently asked question by cancer patients to dieticians and doctors is “What Should I eat and What Should I Avoid?”. 

Taking nutritional Feverfew supplements can benefit Urachal adenocarcinoma patients on Gemcitabine cancer treatment. But avoid Feverfew supplements if on Pralatrexate treatment for Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma. Similarly, taking nutritional supplement Feverfew can benefit healthy individuals who are at genetic risk of cancer due to mutation of gene MLH1. But avoid taking nutritional supplement Feverfew when at genetic risk of cancer due to mutation of gene STK11.

The takeaway being – your individual context will influence your decision if nutritional supplement Feverfew is safe or not. And also that this decision needs to be constantly revisited as conditions change. Conditions like cancer type, current ongoing treatments and supplements, age, gender, weight, height, lifestyle and any genetic mutations identified matter. So a legitimate question for you to ask for any recommendation of food and natural supplement is how it is related to your individual context. 



Brief Overview

Nutritional supplements – vitamins, herbs, minerals, probiotics, and other specialty categories are increasing. Supplements  are high concentrations of active ingredients which are also found in different foods. The difference being foods contain more than one active ingredient at lower diffused concentrations. Remember that each of these ingredients has its own science and biological mechanism at molecular level – hence choose  the right combination of supplements like Feverfew based on individual context and conditions. 

Feverfew Supplements for Cancer Treatment and genetic Risk

So the question is should you take supplement Feverfew? Should you take it when at genetic risk of cancer for mutation of gene STK11? Should you take it when at genetic risk of cancer for mutation of gene MLH1? Should you take it when diagnosed with Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma? Should you take Feverfew supplements when diagnosed with Urachal adenocarcinoma? Should you take it when on Pralatrexate treatment? Should you continue taking it if you change your treatment from Pralatrexate to Gemcitabine? So a general explanation like – it is natural or it increases immunity may not be acceptable and sufficient for choosing Feverfew. 

Cancer

Cancer remains an unsolved problem statement. The improved availability of personalized treatments and monitoring of cancer via blood and saliva have been significant factors to improve outcomes. The earlier the intervention – the better the influence on outcome. Genetic testing has the potential to assess cancer risk and susceptibility early. But besides regular monitoring in most cases there are no therapeutic intervention options available. After diagnosis with cancer such as Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma or Urachal adenocarcinoma, the treatments get personalized to tumor genomics and factors like staging of disease, age and gender. During cancer remission (after treatment cycle is complete) – monitoring is used for assessment of any relapse and accordingly decide next steps. A large majority of cancer patients and those at-risk do take nutritional supplements like Feverfew.

So the question is that are all genetic mutation risks and types of cancers to be considered as one when deciding the use of Feverfew? Are the biochemical pathway implications of genetic risk for cancer due to mutation of gene STK11 the same as due to mutation of gene MLH1? Are the implications of Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma same as Urachal adenocarcinoma? Is it one and the same if you are on treatment Pralatrexate or on Gemcitabine? 

Feverfew – A Nutritional Supplement

Feverfew is a flowering plant native to Eastern Europe and Asia Minor. The name comes from the Latin word “febrifugia”, which means “fever reducer”. The dried leaves and shoots (the aerial parts of the plant) are used for medicinal purposes. Feverfew is considered to have anti-inflammatory properties and has been traditionally used for various conditions :

  • As a pain reliever
  • For headaches
  • For fever
  • For coughs and colds
  • For Uterine disorders
  • For inflammatory conditions such as arthritis

Feverfew is currently being used more predominantly for migraine attacks. (Barbara Wider et al, Cochrane Database Syst Rev., 2015) Some of the known side-effects of taking feverfew supplements are:

  • Stomach upset or bloating
  • Nausea and/or Vomiting
  • Diarrhea or Constipation
  • Heartburn

Feverfew supplements contain many active ingredients including Parthenolide and Centaureidin at different concentration levels. The molecular pathways which are regulated by Feverfew include Cell Cycle, P53 Signaling, TGFB Signaling, Lipid Metabolism and Vitamin D Signaling. These cellular pathways directly or indirectly regulate specific cancer molecular endpoints like growth, spread and death. Because of this biological regulation – for cancer nutrition, the right choice of supplements like Feverfew individually or in combination is an important decision to be made. When making decisions on the use of supplement Feverfew for cancer – do consider all these factors and explanations. Because just as true for cancer treatments – Feverfew use cannot be a one-size-fits-all decision for all types of cancers.

Choosing Feverfew Supplements for Your Cancer

The reason there is no easy way to answer the question “When should I avoid Feverfew for Cancer” is because “It Depends!”. Just like the same treatment does not work for every cancer patient, based on your individual context the Feverfew may be harmful or safe. Along with which cancer and associated genetics – the ongoing treatments, supplements, lifestyle habits, BMI and allergies are all factors deciding if Feverfew should be avoided or not and why.

1. Will Feverfew Supplements benefit Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma Patients undergoing Pralatrexate Cancer treatment?

Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma is characterized and driven by specific genetic mutations like KMT2D and CREBBP leading to biochemical pathway changes in Cell Cycle, Vitamin D Signaling, PI3K-AKT-MTOR Signaling, P53 Signaling and Cancer Epigenetics. A cancer treatment like Pralatrexate works through a specific pathway mechanism of action. The goal is to have a good overlap between the treatment and cancer driving pathways for a personalized approach which is effective. In such a condition any food or nutritional supplement which has a contrary effect to the treatment or reduces the overlap should be avoided. As an example, Feverfew should be avoided for Non-Hodgkin Lymphoma along with treatment Pralatrexate. Feverfew impacts pathways like Cell Cycle and Vitamin D Signaling which either promote drivers of the disease and/or nullify the treatment effect. Some of the factors which should be considered when choosing nutrition are type of cancer, treatments and supplements being taken currently (if any), age, gender, BMI, lifestyle and any genetic mutation information (if available).

2. Will Feverfew Supplements benefit Urachal adenocarcinoma Patients undergoing Gemcitabine Cancer Treatment?

Urachal adenocarcinoma is characterized and driven by specific genetic mutations like TP53 and MTOR leading to biochemical pathway changes in P53 Signaling, Cytokine Signaling, RUNX Signaling, PI3K-AKT-MTOR Signaling and Angiogenesis. A cancer treatment like Gemcitabine works through specific pathway mechanisms. The goal is to have a good overlap between the treatment and cancer driving pathways for a personalized approach. In such a condition any food or nutritional supplement which has a compatible effect to the treatment or reduces the overlap should be considered. As an example, Feverfew supplements should be considered for Urachal adenocarcinoma along with treatment Gemcitabine. Feverfew supplements impact pathways like P53 Signaling and Cytokine Signaling which either obstruct drivers of the disease (Urachal adenocarcinoma) and/or improve the treatment effect. 

For Which Cancer to Avoid taking Supplement Feverfew

Foods to Eat After Cancer Diagnosis!

No two cancers are the same. Go beyond the common nutrition guidelines for everyone and make personalized decisions about food and supplements with confidence.

3. Are Feverfew Supplements Safe for Healthy Individuals with STK11 Mutation Associated Genetic Risk?

Different companies offer panels of genes to be tested for assessing genetic risk to different cancers. These panels cover genes associated with cancers of the breast, ovary, uterus, prostate, and gastrointestinal system and others. Genetic testing of these genes may confirm a diagnosis and help guide treatment and management decisions. Identification of a disease-causing variant may also guide testing and diagnosis of at-risk relatives. STK11 is one of the genes generally available in panels for cancer risk testing.

STK11 mutation causes biochemical pathways TGFB Signaling, Lipid Metabolism, Growth Factor Signaling, Adipocytokine Signaling and PI3K-AKT-MTOR Signaling to get impacted. These pathways are direct or indirect drivers of cancer molecular endpoints. Feverfew should be avoided when the genetic panel identifies mutation of STK11 for Breast Cancer and Colon Cancer. Feverfew impacts pathways like TGFB Signaling and Lipid Metabolism and creates adverse effects with STK11 and related conditions.

4. Are Feverfew Supplements Safe for Healthy Individuals with MLH1 Mutation Associated Genetic Risk?

MLH1 is one of the genes available in panels for cancer risk testing. MLH1 mutation causes biochemical pathways Lipid Metabolism, P53 Signaling, Angiogenesis, Growth Factor Signaling and DNA Repair to get impacted. These pathways are direct or indirect drivers of cancer molecular endpoints. Consider taking Feverfew supplements when the genetic panel identifies mutation in MLH1 for Ovarian Cancer and Colon Cancer. Feverfew impacts pathways like Lipid Metabolism and P53 Signaling and creates a supportive effect in those with MLH1 and related conditions.

Which Cancer Types to Avoid Feverfew Supplement

* Other Factors are also included like BMI, Lifestyle Habits, Treatments

In Conclusion

The two most important things to remember are that cancer treatments and nutrition are never the same for everyone. Nutrition which includes food and nutritional supplements like Feverfew, is an effective tool which can be controlled by you, while facing cancer.

What food you eat and which supplements you take is a decision you make. Your decision should include consideration of the cancer gene mutations, which cancer, ongoing treatments and supplements, any allergies, lifestyle information, weight, height and habits.

The nutrition planning for cancer from addon is not based on internet searches. It automates the decision making for you based on molecular science implemented by our scientists and software engineers. Irrespective of whether you care to understand the underlying biochemical molecular pathways or not - for nutrition planning for cancer that understanding is needed.

Get started NOW with your nutrition planning by answering questions on the name of cancer, genetic mutations, ongoing treatments and supplements, any allergies, habits, lifestyle, age group and gender.

Foods to Eat After Cancer Diagnosis!

No two cancers are the same. Go beyond the common nutrition guidelines for everyone and make personalized decisions about food and supplements with confidence.


Cancer patients often have to deal with different chemotherapy side effects which affect their quality of life and look out for alternative therapies for cancer. Taking the right nutrition and supplements based on scientific considerations (avoiding guesswork and random selection) is the best natural remedy for cancer and treatment related side-effects.


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