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What should I Eat?

is the most common question asked by cancer patients.
Choose food and nutritional supplements which avoids bad interactions with your cancer treatment and is good for you.

is the most common question asked by cancer patients. Choose food and nutritional supplements which avoids bad interactions with your cancer treatment and is good for you.

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For Which Cancer Types Should I Avoid Cumin Supplement?

Jun 2, 2021

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Highlights

Nutritional supplements like Cumin 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 Cumin 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 Cumin supplements can benefit Primary Central Nervous System Lymphoma patients on Epirubicin cancer treatment. But avoid Cumin supplements if on Cytarabine treatment for Myeloproliferative Neoplasms. Similarly, taking nutritional supplement Cumin can benefit healthy individuals who are at genetic risk of cancer due to mutation of gene CEBPA. But avoid taking nutritional supplement Cumin when at genetic risk of cancer due to mutation of gene MRE11.

The takeaway being – your individual context will influence your decision if nutritional supplement Cumin 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 Cumin based on individual context and conditions. 

Cumin Supplements for Cancer Treatment and Genetic Risk

So the question is should you take the supplement Cumin? Should you take it when at genetic risk of cancer for mutation of gene MRE11? Should you take it when at genetic risk of cancer for mutation of gene CEBPA? Should you take it when diagnosed with Myeloproliferative Neoplasms? Should you take it when diagnosed with Primary Central Nervous System Lymphoma? Should you take it when on Cytarabine treatment? Should you continue taking Cumin supplement if you change your treatment from Cytarabine to Epirubicin? So a general explanation like – it is natural or it increases immunity may not be acceptable and sufficient for choosing Cumin. 

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 Myeloproliferative Neoplasms or Primary Central Nervous System Lymphoma, 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 Cumin.

So the question is that are all genetic mutation risks and types of cancers to be considered as one when deciding the use of Cumin? Are the biochemical pathway implications of genetic risk for cancer due to mutation of gene MRE11 the same as due to mutation of gene CEBPA? Are the implications of Myeloproliferative Neoplasms same as Primary Central Nervous System Lymphoma? Is it one and the same if you are on treatment with Cytarabine or on Epirubicin? 

Cumin – A Nutritional Supplement

Cumin is a seed from the herb called Cuminum cyminum and is commonly used as spice. Cumin is native to the area from the Eastern Mediterranean to Eastern India.They are packed with antioxidants such as flavonoids, alkaloids and phenols. Following are some of the potential health benefits of cumin:

  • May help in digestion
  • May reduce Inflammation
  • May reduce bad cholesterol
  • May help with weight loss
  • May help control blood sugar

Cumin supplements contain many active ingredients including Kaempferol, Linoleic Acid,  Linolenic Acid, Retinol, Stigmasterol and Caffeic Acid at different concentration levels. The molecular pathways which are regulated by Cumin include DNA Repair, Cell Cycle, Stem Cell Signaling, MYC Signaling and NFKB 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 Cumin individually or in combination is an important decision to be made. When making decisions on the use of supplement Cumin for cancer – do consider all these factors and explanations. Because just as true for cancer treatments – Cumin use cannot be a one-size-fits-all decision for all types of cancers.

Choosing Cumin Supplements for Your Cancer

The reason there is no easy way to answer the question “When should I avoid Cumin for Cancer” is because “It Depends!”. Just like the same treatment does not work for every cancer patient, based on your individual context the Cumin 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 Cumin should be avoided or not and why.

1. Will Cumin Supplements benefit Cancer Patients with Myeloproliferative Neoplasms undergoing Cytarabine treatment?

Myeloproliferative Neoplasms is characterized and driven by specific genetic mutations like JAK2 and CALR leading to biochemical pathway changes in DNA Repair, MYC Signaling, NFKB Signaling, JAK-STAT Signaling and Cytokine Signaling. A cancer treatment like Cytarabine 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, Cumin should be avoided for Myeloproliferative Neoplasms along with treatment Cytarabine. Cumin impacts pathways/processes like DNA Repair and MYC Signaling which either promote drivers of the disease and/or nullify the treatment effect. Additionally, Cumin supplements contain key active ingredients like Kaempferol, Linoleic Acid,  Linolenic Acid, Retinol, Caffeic Acid and others which have CYP3A4 interactions with Cytarabine treatment, and hence should be avoided by cancer patients undergoing this treatment. (Ji-Won Park et al, Chin J Nat Med, 2019; Hsien-Tsung Yao et al, Life Sci., 2006; Kun Wang et al, Biochem Pharmacol., 2008; Churdsak Jaikang et al, J. Med. Plants Res., 2011; Dawn E Colburn et al, Hematology., 2004) 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 Cumin Supplements benefit Cancer Patients with Primary Central Nervous System Lymphoma undergoing Epirubicin Treatment?

Primary Central Nervous System Lymphoma is characterized and driven by specific genetic mutations like MYD88 and CD79B leading to biochemical pathway changes in Cell Cycle, NFKB Signaling, Apoptosis, B Cell Receptor Signaling and RAS-RAF Signaling. A cancer treatment like Epirubicin 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, Cumin supplement should be considered for Primary Central Nervous System Lymphoma along with treatment Epirubicin. Cumin supplement impacts pathways/processes like Cell Cycle and NFKB Signaling which either obstruct drivers of the disease and/or improve Epirubicin treatment effect. 

India to New York for Cancer Treatment | Need for Personalized Nutrition-specific to Cancer

Top 10 Foods and Supplements to Avoid for Cancer

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3. Are Cumin Supplements Safe for Healthy Individuals with MRE11 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. MRE11 is one of the genes generally available in panels for cancer risk testing.

MRE11 mutation causes biochemical pathways Stem Cell Signaling, Estrogen Signaling, DNA Repair, Angiogenesis and Growth Factor Signaling to get impacted. These pathways are direct or indirect drivers of cancer molecular endpoints. Cumin should be avoided when the genetic panel identifies mutation of MRE11 for Breast Cancer. Cumin impacts pathways/processes like Stem Cell Signaling and Estrogen Signaling and creates adverse effects with MRE11 and related conditions.

4. Are Cumin Supplements Safe for Healthy Individuals with CEBPA Mutation Associated Genetic Risk?

CEBPA is one of the genes available in panels for cancer risk testing. CEBPA mutation causes biochemical pathways/processes like Stem Cell Signaling, Hypoxia, Nucleotide metabolism, MAPK Signaling and Cell Cycle to get impacted. These pathways are direct or indirect drivers of cancer molecular endpoints. Consider taking Cumin supplements when the genetic panel identifies mutation in CEBPA for Hematological Cancer. Cumin impacts pathways/processes like Stem Cell Signaling and Hypoxia and creates a supportive effect in those with CEBPA mutation and related conditions. 

Which Cancer Types to Avoid Cumin 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 Cumin, is an effective tool which can be controlled by you, while facing cancer.

“What should I eat?” is the most frequently asked question to cancer dieticians and physicians. The right answer depends upon cancer type, underlying genomics, current treatments, any allergies, lifestyle information, and factors like BMI.

The addon personalized nutrition plan keeps you safe from adverse nutrition interactions.

Get started NOW with answering questions on type of cancer, current treatments, supplements, allergies, age group, gender, and lifestyle information.

Top 10 Foods and Supplements to Avoid for Cancer

Go beyond same nutrition guidelines for everyone and make personalized decisions 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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