The Cancer Answer: Destruction of the Mitochondria

Whole Life Times
November, 1999


by J.E. LaTour

For approximately six decades, the orthodox medical community has held the attitude that cancer has its origin in changes in the control functions of the cell's nucleus. According to this concept (known as cellular nucleus dysfunction), cancer is irreversible, and the only therapeutic approach is to kill or get rid of the cells by surgery, radiation and chemotherapy (anti-metabolites). However, this opinion is wrong. Since 1938, food physiologists have been in possession of abundant scientific proof that cancer has its real origin in the mitochondria of our cells, not in the nucleus.

Mitochondria: Powerhouse of the Cell

Mitochondria, commonly described as the "powerhouse of the cell," are little energy engines that have their own DNA and live outside the cell's nucleus in the cytoplasm. Each of the millions of cells in the body contains thousands of mitochondria that transform nutrients in the food we eat to usable energy. Tissues such as the heart, skeletal muscles, and brain have the most mitochondria because they have the highest energy demands.

Mitochondria are transmitted only by women (sperm do not transmit mitochondria) and have been used to trace genetic lines, since a woman's children will have the same mitochondria that she does. Although the role of mitochondria in aging and degenerative disorders was discovered decades ago, only in the last few years has knowledge in this area expanded and the significance been recognized. Mitochondria dysfunction is now recognized in Alzheimer's, Huntington's and Parkinson's disease and ALS, and may be at the root of the aging process itself.

Cancer Research Ignored for Sixty Years

In 1938, the great cancer scientist and researcher Paul Gerhardt Seeger, M.D., revealed that the true cause of the cancerous degeneration of a cell results from the destruction of a specific respiratory enzyme, cytochrome oxidase. In other words, cancer in the cell is caused by disturbance of oxygen utilization, or cell respiration.

Dr. Seeger carried out experiments with hundreds of histo-chemical methods in the Department of Cell and Virus Research in the Robert Koch Institute of Berlin, Germany. Later work at Humbolt University in Berlin in 1956, after approximately ten years of work at Charite Hospital, confirmed his earlier research results of 1938. What Dr. Seeger found was that inactivation or destruction of the enzyme cytochrome oxidase causes a dysfunction of the metabolism in the initial stages of the generation of energy in the mitochondria.

Mitochondria accomplish their task of generating energy through an oxygen-requiring process called oxidative phosphorylation. Through a series of biochemical reactions, carbohydrates, fats, and proteins are broken down into smaller units. Carbon dioxide and hydrogen are released in the process. The carbon dioxide, a form of toxic waste, is quickly removed. The hydrogen ion is carried by the electron transport chain, eventually meeting up with molecular oxygen to form water. The energy generated from our food components is then stored in the form of a universal energy molecule called adenosine triphosphate (ATP).

When the enzyme cytochrome oxidase is inactivated or destroyed, excess hydrogen accumulates in the cell as oxidative phosphorylation comes to a halt. The cell still needs energy, however, and is forced to switch over to a less efficient method of energy synthesis that takes place in the surrounding cytoplasm. This results in the conversion of only about 20% of the possible energy that could be supplied, and only about a fifth of possible ATP storage. Less energy is generated for the cell's use, and less energy is stored.

With the cell's main sources of energy synthesis now greatly diminished, the groundwork is laid for cancerous degeneration. Any problems involving the operation and functioning of the mitochondria have a negative effect on all energy-requiring functions of our body. More than just the cell in which the malfunctioning mitochondria is located can be affected; the lowered vitality can affect other organs, or even the body as a whole. A great deal of evidence exists to support the claim that damage to the cells' mitochondria is a major contributing factor in all the diseases of "civilization," including the degenerative conditions previously mentioned, as well as multiple sclerosis, ataxia, dementia, heart disease, and diabetes.

Chemicals the Culprit

So what is destroying these very important cytochrome enzymes? The actual cause is without question due to the vast number of poisonous chemical substances that we find in our civilization. Synthetic chemicals provide an inexhaustible supply of poisonous and cancer-producing substances. All of these air-borne, water-borne, and food-borne toxins and poisons adversely affect the mitochondria. These poisons target and destroy cardiolipine, a lipid contained in the inner mitochondrial membrane, to which the cytochrome enzymes of the respiratory chain are anchored. Destroying the lipid deactivates and destroys the enzymes, which then prevents the oxidative processes required to generate energy and heat from occurring properly, if at all.

In addition, the process of aerobic metabolism, oxidative phosphorylation, produces free radicals as by-products. Although the cells have a number of built-in antioxidant defenses, these can be overwhelmed by stress or illness, as well as environmental poisons. These defenses, like mitochondrial function, also need to be supported through dietary means when the body's natural balance has been upset or destroyed.

Confirmation of Dr. Seeger's Discoveries

The eminent cancer researcher Dr. Hans Nieper, president of the German Oncological Society of Hanover, states in his authoritative book The Prevention of Cancer Through Precautionary Measures of a Biological Nature, "If anyone has the right to make any kind of fundamental statement concerning the scientific foundations of the prevention of cancer, then it is Paul Gerhardt Seeger, who was decades ahead of his time."

Nobel prize winner Professor Von Euler of Stockholm also confirmed Dr. Seeger's demonstration that cancer is caused by destruction of indispensable enzymes in the mitochondria. Years later, in 1975, Svent Gorgi, the discoverer of Vitamin C, demanded at a meeting of Nobel laureates at Lindau that cancer research move from molecular to atomic focus. In 1979, the accomplished biochemist Dr. D. Washutl of Vienna, in a lecture held on the Medical Week of Baden-Baden, supported Dr. Seeger's findings in every respect.

Only now, after years of the so-called "War on Cancer" failing to make any advances or genuine therapeutic progress, have the far-reaching implications of Dr. Seeger's work begun to be recognized by a few.

One Out of Three Will Develop Cancer

Food physiologists have been educating the public regarding the fact that we have now, for many decades, been living in a time in which each human being, from birth to advanced age, ingests harmful toxins and poisons via air, water and food, thus damaging, crippling, and finally destroying the enzymes of the mitochondria, leading to the development of cancer.

Considering that, at present, one out of three Americans will develop some form of cancer in their lifetime, this situation demands serious attention. We must address the epidemic occurrence of this degenerative disease. Chemotherapy, surgery, and radiation treat only symptoms while ignoring the causes of cancer. Cancer must be addressed at its source.

According to the extensive research of John Higgensen, Director of the Cancer Research Institute of the World Health Organization in Geneva, about 90% of all degenerative diseases could be eliminated by getting rid of the hundreds of carcinogenic environmental toxins permeating air, water and food. These toxins eventually destroy the vital cellular functions preserving life.

Enzyme-Rich Foods for Mitochondrial Repair

Degenerated, cancerous cells can indeed be reversed back to normal cellular function by utilizing specialized enzyme-active nutritional substances and select vegetable and fruit hydrogen acceptors.

These enzyme-rich nutritional substances include: Saccharomyces cerevisiae live fluid yeast strain, raw and crystallized (freeze-dried) red beets and red beet juice, raw blueberry juice, bromelain (pineapple enzyme), raw pineapple juice, raw red grapes, unheated red wine, raw red cherries, and carotene (specifically beta carotene).

Please note that Saccharomyces cerevisiae yeast strain is not to be confused with Candida albicans! Unlike Candida, Saccharomyces cerevisiae live fluid strain exhibits no negative influence on human cells, and in fact has been observed to have an antagonistic effect against Candida albicans. Most orthodox medical practitioners, and even many nutritionists, remain unaware and unappreciative of the far-reaching health benefits of live S. cerevisiae yeast.

We must clean up our living environment on this planet, and we must utilize natural biological nutritional substances to correct already damaged body cells. We must reestablish cellular integrity with nutritional biological methods. And above all, we must afford a new respect for our ecological-environmental systems if we are to survive.

J.E. LaTour is a Los Angeles-based food physiologist and nutritional
consultant at Erewhon Natural Foods Market who has been
researching cancer for more than 30 years.

by Permission of Author

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