Thursday, December 22, 2011

The diabetes drugs linked to pancreatic cancer

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22 December 2011

UK Edition

Dear Reader,

Called a "silent killer" for its symptom-free early stages, this cancer is unfortunately often not caught until it's advanced.

Once someone gets a diagnosis, the chances of survival are generally pretty slim. Pancreatic cancer is an awful killer.

And your diabetes medication could be increasing your risk of developing it, according to a new study in the journal Gastroenterology.

US researchers pored over American Food and Drug Administration (FDA) database entries of adverse events reported among patients using the drugs sitagliptin (brand name Januvia) and exenatide (brand name Byettta) between 2004 and 2009.

What they found is downright disturbing: a six-fold increase in the odds of pancreatitis (compared with four other diabetes therapies). They also found that patients taking the drugs may be more likely to end up with pancreatic cancer: a 2.7-fold increase associated with patients taking sitagliptin and a 2.9-fold increase in the rate of pancreatic cancer linked to patients taking exenatide.

They also found an increase in thyroid cancer risk with exenatide use.

The researchers were compelled to look into the pancreatic cancer connection after animal studies showed that the drugs caused abnormal growth of ducts in the pancreatic gland that carries digestive juices to the gut. They worried that if this happened in humans, it could translate to an increased risk of cancer. And, sadly, it looks like they could be right.

Both sitagliptin and exenatide enhance the action of a hormone called GLP-1, which lowers blood sugar. Now, here's the kicker: Previous research, published in 2009, has suggested a link between these types of drugs and pancreatitis. Of course, nobody has done anything about it.

I don't know about you, but I'm tired of "modern medicine" asking us to trade one disease for another. Why should you be asked to trade your diabetes in for a risk of deadly cancer? Especially when natural medicine offers so many safe and effective alternatives. The mainstream needs to stop pretending that those alternatives don't exist.

Of course, I'm not holding my breath for that to happen anytime soon.

Continues below...
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Under pressure

Q: My doctor wants to put me on a prescription for my blood pressure. I have never been on any prescription drugs in my life and I don't want to start now. Diet and exercise can help, I know, but what else can I do?

Dr Jonathan V. Wright: Biofeedback is another valuable and frequently effective "non-drug" tool for lowering blood pressure. It is not so much a "treatment" as it is a training programme. Using external instruments, a reading is obtained of your body's reactions to stress. Through practice, you learn to recognize the physiological responses you have that might be causing unhealthy reactions and teach yourself how to control those responses. Biofeedback centres are found in all major cities.

You may also want to consider taking potassium if you're not already. Sometimes it reduces blood pressure, sometimes it doesn't. But since higher potassium levels do reduce stroke risk, it's always a good idea to take extra potassium (300 to 500 milligrams per day) if you have hypertension, even if it doesn't lower your actual blood-pressure numbers.

Calcium and magnesium are also worth trying. For some individuals, about 1 gram (1,000 milligrams) of calcium daily can reduce blood pressure by five to 10 points. For others, calcium makes very little difference. (It appears to work more often for those with insulin resistance/hyperinsulinemia.) If you do supplement with calcium, it's important to balance it with magnesium, which can also help lower your blood pressure, since it helps relax blood vessels and improves blood flow through them. Supplementing with 300-400 milligrams of each nutrient daily is usually sufficient.
Bear in mind we are not addressing anyone's personal situation and you should rely on this for informational purposes only. Please consult with your own physician before acting on any recommendations contained herein.

Wishing you the best of health,

Andrew Miller
UK Editor
Nutrition and Healing

P.S. In the latest issue of Nutrition & Healing, Dr. Wright will tell you how to beat back the common cold with an ordinary mineral... You'll also learn about the latest ground-breaking research that has uncovered a cervical cancer breakthrough... PLUS we'll share the remarkable story of a lady called Evelyn, who recovered from macular degeneration with " drugs, no surgery..."

All new members who sign up will receive important updates like these in addition to receiving Dr. Wright's 7 Volume Library of Natural Healing.

Read here for full details.


"Study suggests possible link between two Type 2 diabetes drugs and pancreatic cancer," Medical Xpress (

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