At age 31, Dr. Servan-Schreiber was an ambitious physician and neuroscience researcher who reveled in discovery and glittering science projects. He was a founding member of the U.S. branch of Doctors Without Borders and a rising star in neuropsychiatry. When a volunteer for a brain scan experiment failed to show up, he slid into the scanner himself and discovered a tumor in his brain. Further tests revealed that he had brain cancer.
After conventional treatment, he asked his oncologist what he should change so that the cancer would not come back. His answer was perfectly stereotypical: “Go back to your usual way of life. It won’t make much difference.” So he continued living his life as he had before, eating a diet high in sugar and red meat, exercising little, and abandoning an earlier interest in meditation.
The cancer returned a few years later and he endured a second surgery, chemotherapy and radiotherapy. Dr. Servan-Schreiber then decided to use his medical and scientific training to explore and investigate how he could help his body to better prevent cancer. His discoveries led to the best selling book: Anticancer – A New Way of Life.
“Being a physician and scientist is no protection from getting cancer. But it allowed me to dig deeply into the medical and scientific literature in search of ways to live longer than the few years I was expected to survive.”
“I spent months researching the healing powers of food before I fully grasped my own natural cancer-fighting potential. I met with a variety of researchers, scoured medical databases, and combed scientific publications. I traveled all over the world and consulted experts from nearly every continent.”
“The first thing I learned is that we all carry cancer cells in us, even if only a few. But we also have natural defenses that usually prevent these cells from becoming an aggressive disease. These defenses include our immune system; the bodily functions that control inflammation; and foods that reduce the growth of blood vessels needed by tumors.”
“In my quest, I discovered that the list of anticancer foods is actually quite long. Some foods block natural bodily processes such as inflammation that fuels cancer growth. Others force cancer cells to die through a process that specialists call apoptosis. Still other foods assist the body in detoxifying cancer-causing toxins or protecting against free radicals. But most of them attack the disease on a variety of fronts. And they do it every day, three times a day, without provoking any side effects. To avoid the disease, it’s essential to take advantage of this natural protection, and nurture it.”
Dr. Servan-Schreiber has happily been in remission for over 16 years and currently resides in Pittsburgh and Paris.