What Foods are Recommended for Cancer?
is a very common question. Personalized Nutrition Plans are foods and supplements which are personalized to a cancer indication, genes, any treatments and lifestyle conditions.

For Which Cancer Types Should I Avoid Chaga Mushroom Supplement?

Nov 9, 2022

Estimated reading time: 9 minutes
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Nutritional supplements and extracts like Chaga Mushroom have benefits and are used by cancer patients and those at-genetic risk of cancer. There is limited or hardly any clinical data available for use of nutritional supplements and foods in cancer patients. Generating clinical evidence of efficacy for cancer through a randomized clinical trial is further infeasible due to variations in genetics and cancer chemotherapy treatments across cancer patients. Hence a different and new approach is needed to find out for which cancers you should not take Chaga Mushroom supplement and why should not take them?

Is it okay to take Chaga Mushroom extracts or supplements for all cancer indications and any chemotherapy treatment? A common belief but a myth is that everything natural can only be of benefit and do no harm. For example, the use of grapefruit with certain medications is not recommended. Another example is the use of spinach with some blood thinning medications can cause adverse interactions and hence to be avoided. For cancer, nutrition including plant-based foods and supplements can influence outcomes and hence an extremely important decision which needs to be made. Hence NIH-National Cancer Institute has a website for nutrition for cancer care for patients which are generalized recommendations and not personalized for cancer indication and treatments.

A frequently asked question by cancer patients and those at-risk is “What Foods and Nutritional Supplements could be beneficial over others for me?”. “Who should not take an extract or supplement and why?”. Generic guidelines like eating only plant-based-foods or avoiding all sugar or adopting a keto diet is a good start but not actionable and personalized enough.

To find answers to questions on extracts and nutritional supplements and foods requires knowledge of contained active ingredients; genetic mutation prevalence for cancer indication; understanding of underlying cancer biology; chemotherapy treatments and mechanism of actions of active ingredients.

Taking Chaga Mushroom extracts or nutritional supplements may benefit Primary Penile Squamous Cell Carcinoma patients on Cisplatin treatment over Artichoke nutritional supplements. But Chaga Mushroom supplements or Chaga Mushroom extracts offer less benefit if on Vemurafenib treatment for Primary Erdheim Chester Disease compared to Ecklonia Cava. Similarly, taking nutritional supplements Chaga Mushroom may benefit healthy individuals who are at genetic risk of cancer due to mutation of gene MLH1 over Graviola. But avoid nutritional supplements Chaga Mushroom when at genetic risk of cancer due to mutation of gene.

The takeaway being – cancer, genomics, treatments and other personalized factors will influence decision making to questions like: Are extracts or nutritional supplements Chaga Mushroom beneficial and should not be taken? Why should Chaga Mushroom be not taken? Who should not take Chaga Mushroom? What are side effects of Chaga Mushroom with Vemurafenib chemotherapy? What are the benefits of Chaga Mushroom for cancer? Can Chaga Mushroom help fight cancer and so on.

Whenever there are changes in chemotherapy treatments or cancer tissue genetics – the nutrition may change and hence needs to be re-evaluated. Do consider factors like cancer indication, ongoing chemotherapy treatments and nutritional supplements, age, gender, weight, height, lifestyle and genetics for personalization of nutrition.

Brief Overview

Use of 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. Difference between supplements and foods being that foods contain more than one active ingredient at much lower concentrations. Every active ingredient in an extract or nutritional supplement or food has a unique mechanism of action which can influence nutrition decisions.

Chaga Mushroom supplement benefits for cancer patients treatments

These are some example questions which nutrition planning should help answer for you. Should you take supplements Chaga Mushroom? Should you take it when at genetic risk of cancer for mutation of gene MLH1? Should you take it when at genetic risk of cancer for mutation of gene? Should you take it when diagnosed with Primary Erdheim Chester Disease? Should you take it when diagnosed with Primary Penile Squamous Cell Carcinoma? Should you take it when on Cisplatin treatment? Should you continue taking it if you change your treatment from Cisplatin to Vemurafenib? So a general explanation like – it is organic and plant-based or it increases immunity is not sufficient information for making a decision of use of Chaga Mushroom extracts and nutritional supplements.


Genetic variations across cancer patients can be different and hence no two cancers are alike. The improved availability of “personalized to genetics” chemotherapy treatments and cancer disease monitoring via blood and saliva have been significant factors to improve outcomes. The earlier the lifestyle and treatment intervention – the better the influence on outcome. Genetic testing has the potential to assess cancer risk and susceptibility early. But for at-risk individuals besides regular monitoring in most cases there are no therapeutic treatment intervention options available. After diagnosis with cancer such as Primary Penile Squamous Cell Carcinoma or Primary Erdheim Chester Disease, 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 on next steps. A large majority of cancer patients and those at-risk may take nutritional supplements like Chaga Mushroom.

So the question is that are all genetic risks and cancer indications to be considered uniformly when making decisions on the use of Chaga Mushroom extracts or nutritional supplements? Are the biochemical pathway implications of genetic risk for cancer due to mutation of gene MLH1 the same as due to mutation of gene? Are the implications of Primary Penile Squamous Cell Carcinoma the same as Primary Erdheim Chester Disease? Is it one and the same if you are on treatment with Vemurafenib or Cisplatin?

Chaga Mushroom – An Extract or Nutritional Supplement

Chaga mushrooms (Inonotus obliquus) are parasitic fungi that grow on the trunks of birch trees. Chaga mushrooms are considered to have anti-bacterial, anti-allergic, anti-inflammatory and antioxidant activities. (Yoo Kyoung Park et al, Biofactors., 2004) Hence, these mushrooms have been used in traditional medicine for various health conditions. These mushrooms produce a woody growth, called conk, which absorbs the nutrients from the wood and is used to make medicine. Chaga mushrooms are available in the form of dietary supplements and its powder is also brewed as herbal tea.

Chaga Mushroom supplements contain many active ingredients including Protocatechuic Acid, Vanillic Acid, Ergosterol Peroxide, Betulinic Acid and Betulin at different concentration levels. The molecular pathways which are regulated by Chaga Mushroom include P53 Signaling, MAPK Signaling, Apoptosis and Stem Cell Signaling. These biochemical pathways directly or indirectly regulate specific cancer molecular endpoints like growth, spread and death of cancer cells. Because of this biological regulation – for cancer nutrition, the right choice of supplements like Chaga Mushroom individually or in combination is an important decision to be made. When making decisions on the use of supplement Chaga Mushroom over other nutritional supplements – do consider all these factors.

Who Should not take Chaga Mushroom Supplements and Why?

There is no easy way to answer the question “For which cancers should I not chooseChaga Mushroom nutritional supplements”. Just like the same chemotherapy treatment does not work across patients, for similar reasons Chaga Mushroom in comparison with other nutritional supplements may be beneficial or not. Along with which cancer and associated genetics – the ongoing treatments, lifestyle habits, height, weight and food allergies are all factors in deciding if Chaga Mushroom should be avoided or not and why.

1. Will Chaga Mushroom Supplements benefit Primary Erdheim Chester Disease patients undergoing Vemurafenib treatment?

Primary Erdheim Chester Disease is characterized and driven by specific genetic mutations like MAP2K1, ARAF and ARID5B leading to biochemical pathway changes in Angiogenesis, RAS-RAF Signaling, MAPK Signaling and Suppressive Histone Methylation. A cancer treatment like Vemurafenib 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, Chaga Mushroom supplement should not be taken for Primary Erdheim Chester Disease along with treatment Vemurafenib. Chaga Mushroom supplement impacts the biochemical pathway called MAPK Signaling which either promotes drivers of the disease and/or nullifies 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

2. Will Chaga Mushroom Supplements benefit Primary Penile Squamous Cell Carcinoma Patients undergoing Cisplatin Treatment?

Primary Penile Squamous Cell Carcinoma is characterized and driven by specific genetic mutations like ABRAXAS1, PIK3CB and NUP93 leading to biochemical pathway changes in P53 Signaling, Hematopoiesis and Inositol Phosphate Signaling. A cancer treatment like Cisplatin 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 supports treatment action or improves the overlap should be considered. As an example, Chaga Mushroom supplements should be considered for Primary Penile Squamous Cell Carcinoma along with the treatment Cisplatin. Chaga Mushroom supplement impacts pathways/processes like P53 Signaling which either obstruct drivers of Primary Penile Squamous Cell Carcinoma and/or improve Cisplatin treatment effect.

For Which Cancer to Avoid taking Supplement Chaga Mushroom?

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. What about Chaga Mushroom Supplements 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/processes like Stem Cell Signaling and Mismatch Repair to get impacted. These pathways are direct or indirect drivers of cancer molecular endpoints. Chaga Mushroom supplements may be considered when the genetic panel identifies mutations in MLH1 for Colon Cancer. Chaga Mushroom impacts pathways/processes like Stem Cell Signaling and creates a canceling effect in those individuals with MLH1 mutation.

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

In Conclusion

It is important to remember that cancer chemotherapy treatments and nutrition are never the same for everyone. Food and nutritional supplements like Chaga Mushroom are chosen by you and can influence outcomes.

“What should I eat?” is a commonly asked question by cancer patients and those at-risk. The answer to this question depends on cancer indication, underlying genetics, current chemotherapy treatments, food allergies, lifestyle information, and food preferences.

The approach to nutrition personalization uses knowledge of active ingredients contained in foods and nutritional supplements, cancer biology, chemotherapy treatment action and genetic mutation prevalence across cancer indications. team of clinicians, clinical scientists and engineers are experts in cancer biology focusing only on nutrition personalization for cancer patients and those at-risk.

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.

Scientifically Reviewed by: Dr. Cogle

Christopher R. Cogle, M.D. is a tenured professor at the University of Florida, Chief Medical Officer of Florida Medicaid, and Director of the Florida Health Policy Leadership Academy at the Bob Graham Center for Public Service.

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