Nutritional supplements like Pueraria Mirifica 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 Pueraria Mirifica 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 Pueraria Mirifica supplements can benefit cancer patients with Endometrial Carcinoma on Cyclophosphamide treatment. But avoid Pueraria Mirifica supplements if on Ruxolitinib treatment for Myeloproliferative Neoplasms. Similarly, taking nutritional supplement Pueraria Mirifica can benefit healthy individuals who are at genetic risk of cancer due to mutation of gene MAX. But avoid taking nutritional supplement Pueraria Mirifica when at genetic risk of cancer due to mutation of gene TERT.
The takeaway being – your individual context will influence your decision if nutritional supplement Pueraria Mirifica 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.
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 Pueraria Mirifica based on individual context and conditions.
So the question is should you take the supplement Pueraria Mirifica? Should you take it when at genetic risk of cancer for mutation of gene TERT? Should you take it when at genetic risk of cancer for mutation of gene MAX? Should you take it when diagnosed with Myeloproliferative Neoplasms? Should you take Pueraria Mirifica supplements when diagnosed with Endometrial Carcinoma? Should you take it when on Ruxolitinib treatment? Should you continue taking Pueraria Mirifica supplements if you change your treatment from Ruxolitinib to Cyclophosphamide? So a general explanation like – it is natural or it increases immunity may not be acceptable and sufficient for choosing Pueraria Mirifica.
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 Endometrial Carcinoma, 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 Pueraria Mirifica.
So the question is that are all genetic mutation risks and types of cancers to be considered as one when deciding the use of Pueraria Mirifica? Are the biochemical pathway implications of genetic risk for cancer due to mutation of gene TERT the same as due to mutation of gene MAX? Are the implications of taking Pueraria Mirifica supplements in Myeloproliferative Neoplasms the same as Endometrial Carcinoma? Is it one and the same if you are on treatment Ruxolitinib or on Cyclophosphamide?
Pueraria Mirifica – A Nutritional Supplement
Pueraria Mirifica, also known as Kwao Krua, is a plant native to northern and north eastern Thailand and Myanmar. It is also available in the form of dietary supplements and has been widely used for the presence of phytoestrogen compounds. Following are some of the potential health benefits of Pueraria Mirifica:
- May have antioxidant properties (Waranya Chatuphonprasert et al, J Pharm Pharmacol., 2013)
- May help reduce bad cholesterol (Shinichi Okamura et al, Tohoku J Exp Med., 2008)
- May help improve bone health (Donlaporn Kittivanichkul et al, J Endocrinol., 2016)
- May have neuroprotective effects and help improve brain health (Shinichi Okamura et al, Tohoku J Exp Med., 2008)
- May help reduce menopausal symptoms (Suchinda Malaivijitnond, Front Med., 2012)
Pueraria Mirifica supplements contain many active ingredients including Puerarin at different concentration levels. The molecular pathways which are regulated by Pueraria Mirifica include Extracellular Matrix Remodelling, Apoptosis, Angiogenesis, Vitamin Metabolism and MYC 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 Pueraria Mirifica individually or in combination is an important decision to be made. When making decisions on the use of supplement Pueraria Mirifica for cancer – do consider all these factors and explanations. Because just as true for cancer treatments – Pueraria Mirifica use cannot be a one-size-fits-all decision for all types of cancers.
Choosing Pueraria Mirifica Supplements for Your Cancer
The reason there is no easy way to answer the question “When should I avoid Pueraria Mirifica for Cancer” is because “It Depends!”. Just like the same treatment does not work for every cancer patient, based on your individual context the Pueraria Mirifica 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 Pueraria Mirifica should be avoided or not and why.
1. Will Pueraria Mirifica Supplements benefit Cancer Patients with Myeloproliferative Neoplasms undergoing Ruxolitinib treatment?
Myeloproliferative Neoplasms is characterized and driven by specific genetic mutations like JAK2 and CALR leading to specific biochemical pathway changes. A cancer treatment like Ruxolitinib 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, Pueraria Mirifica should be avoided for Myeloproliferative Neoplasms along with treatment Ruxolitinib. Pueraria Mirifica impacts specific pathways 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 Pueraria Mirifica Supplements benefit Cancer Patients with Endometrial Carcinoma undergoing Cyclophosphamide Treatment?
Endometrial Carcinoma is characterized and driven by specific genetic mutations like PTEN and PIK3CA leading to biochemical pathway changes in Extracellular Matrix Remodelling, Vitamin Metabolism, PI3K-AKT-MTOR Signaling, Small Molecule Transport and MAPK Signaling. A cancer treatment like Cyclophosphamide 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, Pueraria Mirifica supplements should be considered for Endometrial Carcinoma along with treatment Cyclophosphamide. Pueraria Mirifica supplements impact pathways/processes like Extracellular Matrix Remodelling and Vitamin Metabolism which either obstruct drivers of Endometrial Carcinoma and/or improve Cyclophosphamide treatment effect.
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 Pueraria Mirifica Supplements Safe for Healthy Individuals with TERT 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. TERT is one of the genes generally available in panels for cancer risk testing.
TERT mutation causes biochemical pathways/processes like Apoptosis, RUNX Signaling, Stem Cell Signaling, Cell Cycle Checkpoints and JAK-STAT Signaling to get impacted. These pathways are direct or indirect drivers of cancer molecular endpoints. Pueraria Mirifica should be avoided when the genetic panel identifies mutation of TERT for Hematological Cancer. Pueraria Mirifica impacts pathways/processes like Apoptosis and RUNX Signaling and creates adverse effects with TERT and related conditions.
4. Are Pueraria Mirifica Supplements Safe for Healthy Individuals with MAX Mutation Associated Genetic Risk?
MAX is one of the genes available in panels for cancer risk testing. MAX mutation causes biochemical pathways/processes like Angiogenesis, MYC Signaling, Stem Cell Signaling, Cancer Epigenetics and Cell Cycle to get impacted. These pathways are direct or indirect drivers of cancer molecular endpoints. Consider taking Pueraria Mirifica supplements when the genetic panel identifies mutation in MAX for Neuroendocrine Cancer. Pueraria Mirifica impacts pathways/processes like Angiogenesis and MYC Signaling and creates a supportive effect in those with MAX mutation and related conditions.
* Other Factors are also included like BMI, Treatments, Lifestyle Habits
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 Pueraria Mirifica, 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.
Personalized Nutrition for Cancer!
Cancer changes with time. Customize and modify your nutrition based on cancer indication, treatments, lifestyle, food preferences, allergies and other factors.
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.