Mesothelioma affects around 14,000 people around the world each year. It’s a form of cancer that is mostly caused by exposure to asbestos. Primary care treatment involves a mix of chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation. But, in recent years, several people with mesothelioma have found relief from a combination of conventional treatment methods and complementary and alternative medicine (CAM).
In fact, a number of mesothelioma survivors have claimed integrating CAM therapies into their primary care treatment as a reason for their improvement in health. Here are the most beneficial natural treatments for mesothelioma.
1. Try Acupuncture
Acupuncture is one of the most accepted methods to treat mesothelioma. It involves inserting needles in specific pressure points over the body. One study found out acupuncture reduced chest pain, a common symptom of the disease. 1 A few others also found acupuncture as a great coping method after getting chemotherapy, by preventing vomiting and dealing with stress. Another study revealed there was a significant decrease in fatigue associated with cancer after receiving acupuncture.2
2. Get Chiropractic Care
People who suffer from mesothelioma have claimed chiropractic has helped them a lot. They found relief from headaches, pain, stress, and shortness of breath associated with mesothelioma. One study proved chiropractic was effective to alleviate pain in just two sessions.3
3. Begin Aromatherapy
Aromatherapy involves using essential oils and aromatic herbs for healing. While aromatherapy isn’t useful to treat mesothelioma directly, it acts as great coping or complimentary treatment for the symptoms. It can reduce stress, depression, and induce sleep in people. Survivors reveal chamomile, ylang-ylang, sandalwood, and lavender helped them relax. Essential oils of peppermint, eucalyptus, and basil can be used to reduce fatigue associated with mesothelioma.4
4. Do Yoga
Yoga is a great mind-body intervention for people dealing with mesothelioma. Several studies prove yoga can improve the quality of life by reducing pain, fatigue, and improving sleep. A common symptom of mesothelioma is breathing difficulty. One study found out yoga made breathing easier in patients. Not to mention, yoga can also uplift moods by relaxing the mind and body.
5. Practice Meditation
Research suggests that meditation and deep breathing exercises can help improve the condition of any cancer patient. Meditation involves focussing on a single point or thought as a path to self-awareness. It’s one of the most effective ways to calm your mind and reduce stress – very important for preparing your body for treatment. Mindfulness meditation, in particular, has been found to be a source of great relief for several cancer survivors. This is done by focusing on your thoughts and senses.
6. Follow A Healthy Diet
It’s important to have a diet full of vitamins and minerals during this time. Your body needs all the help it can get to fight off the disease. Ensure you do the following:5
- Reduce or avoid sugary foods.
- Eat plenty of fruits, veggies (especially the dark leafy kind), and whole grains.
- Add a source of protein to each meal.
- If you find chewing difficult, make juices and smoothies instead. Carrot, beetroot, and green juices are good options.
- Drink celandine tea to boost your immune system. One study found out celandine, combined with chemotherapy, caused complete remission in people with lung damage from cancer.
- Marshmallow root can reduce a persistent cough related to pleural mesothelioma.
Remember, the above-mentioned methods need to be practiced during or after primary care treatment. Please consult your doctor before beginning any of these treatments. Also, it helps to be part of support groups for emotional strength.
|↑1||Chlan, Linda; Hertz, Marshall I. Integrative Therapies in Lung Health and Sleep.Springer Science & Business Media, 2012|
|↑2||Molassiotis, Alexander, Paola Sylt, and Helen Diggins. “The management of cancer-related fatigue after chemotherapy with acupuncture and acupressure: a randomised controlled trial.” Complementary therapies in medicine 15, no. 4 (2007): 228-237|
|↑3||Schneider, Jeffrey, and Scott Gilford. “The chiropractor’s role in pain management for oncology patients.” Journal of manipulative and physiological therapeutics 24, no. 1 (2001): 52-57|
|↑4||Aromatherapy for Mesothelioma Patients. Mesothelioma|
|↑5||Improve Nutrition to Better Your Prognosis. Mesothelioma Prognosis Network.|