Breast Cancer, Turmeric, and Curcumin


Curcumin, a derivative of the Indian spice, turmeric (used in curry powder) is active against many forms of cancer including leukemia and lymphoma, gastrointestinal cancers, genitourinary cancers, breast cancer, ovarian cancer, head and neck squamous cell carcinoma, lung cancer, melanoma, neurological cancers, and sarcoma. It interferes with the ability of cancerous tumours to generate a blood supply (angiogenesis); increases the self-destructive capacity of cancer cells (apoptosis); slows down cell division in cancer cells; decreases the invasiveness of cancer cells; decreases the tendency of cancer cells to spread or metastastize; and decreases inflammation, which can otherwise prime cancer to grow. It can interfere with the effectiveness of chemotherapy (so should not be used during chemo) but can decrease the redness and inflammation from radiation, and can safely be used during and after radiation treatments.