Citrus fruit nutrient activates cancer-killing cells

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citrus-fruit(NaturalHealth365) Emerging research shows that a natural citrus fruit extract can block the action of galectin-3, a protein that at excessive levels can support the growth of cancer and the onset of heart and kidney disease.

While scientists have been unable to develop pharmaceutical medications effective against galectin-3, it turns out that modified citrus pectin – or MCP – may hold the key to blocking and inactivating it – and even reversing its damage.

Why does galectin-3 turn destructive inside the human body?

Galectin-3, which is produced naturally in the human body, can function as both a hero and a culprit. Although galectin-3 is needed for tissue growth and repair, researchers have long known that excess levels are a biomarker for degenerative disease – and strongly associated with heart failure, kidney disease and cancer.

The fact is: galectin-3 is more than a mere indicator of potential disease. Researchers now believe that it actively encourages the growth and spread of cancer, as well as the development of harmful inflammation and scarring in tissues and organs.

Galectin-3 functions to induce the inflammation and immune response that help to destroy invading pathogens after tissue damage. In cases of injury or infection, galectin-3 helps seal off the affected area by creating chronic inflammation. However, this technique backfires when excessive scarring or inflammation interferes with the function of tissues and organs, thereby setting the stage for disease.

Problems can begin when galectin-3 levels become excessive. Unfortunately, galectin-3 levels rise with increasing age – a compelling argument for supplementation in older individuals, especially those at risk for chronic disease.

Galectin-3 goes “rogue,” facilitating cancer and heart disease

By making it easier for cancer cells to adhere to the linings of blood vessels, galectin-3 assists the disease in spreading. And, cancer cells themselves produce even more galectin-3, which further helps in their colonization. Galectin-3 also helps malignant cells avoid apoptosis – the programmed cell death that would otherwise destroy them.

Excessive levels of galectin-3 levels can wreak havoc on the heart by stimulating the creation of fibroblasts, which create the scar tissue that replaces normal heart muscle. Galectin-3 also creates heart muscle dysfunction by spurring the overproduction of type 1 collagen, which decreases heart muscle elasticity, inhibits pumping action and thickens the heart wall. Failing heart tissue produces larger amounts of galectin-3 than healthy tissue, even before heart failure occurs – a vicious cycle.

Research reveals the lifesaving multiple actions of citrus fruit

Modified citrus pectin (MCP), a complex carbohydrate similar to the natural pectin found in fruits, contains sugar molecules, or galactosides. These galactosides allow it to bind with galectin-3, blocking its destructive actions and disrupting its signaling abilities, thereby effectively “shutting it down.”

In an animal study, MCP not only inhibited galectin-3 levels but also reversed inflammation, fibrosis, and thickening of blood vessel walls — demonstrating its potential to prevent and possibly reverse the dangerous changes that lead to heart failure, even when extensive scarring is present.

MCP also reduced kidney enlargement caused by kidney disease, decreasing fibrosis and inflammatory cells while reducing levels of galectin-3.

MCP activates the body’s own defense system to target cancer

Probably the most heartening finding of all is the discovery that modified citrus pectin can activate natural killer cells — specialized cells produced by the immune system that locate, identify and eliminate cancers as soon as they form. In a laboratory study published in 2011 in BMC Complementary and Alternative Medicine, researchers reported that natural killer cells activated by MCP worked to induce cell death in leukemic cancer cells.

Other studies confirm MCP’s cancer-fighting effects as well.

In an animal study, MCP was shown to decrease the chances of skin cancer spreading to the lungs — by not letting cancer cells stick to normal, healthy tissue and blood vessels. By the same method of action, it prevented colon cancer from spreading to the liver.

And the good news keeps coming. Additional studies have found that that MCP makes cancer cells more susceptible to chemotherapy – as well as causing apoptosis.

The research is in, and the results are clear. For those seeking to combat cancer and heart disease – without the use of toxic drugs – modified citrus pectin could be the safe, natural and effective solution.

References:

http://www.lifeextension.com/Magazine/2014/10/Why-Some-People-Need-Modified-Citrus-Pectin/Page-01
https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/21816083

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  • Alice Cole

    This is the best news I can have. Citrus fruits are my favorite and I like the to keep it whole. I have an organic grapefruit and orange grower right where I live.

    • Greg Hill

      Unfortunately, Alice, this article is about Modified Citrus Pectin (MCP), not regular pectin as it is found in fruits. The molecules of regular pectin are not broken down by digestion and absorbed into the bloodstream while passing through the small intestine. Any effect they may have on our health is in the large intestine only. Modified Citrus Pectin, on the other hand, is a powder, available as a supplement only, which is made by artificially processing pectin in a factory to break it down into smaller pieces that can be absorbed into the bloodstream as it passes through the small intestine. So we can eat all of the real citrus fruit we want, pulp and all, and we will not get from the pectin there any of the benefits that are attributed here to MCP, which is not found anywhere in any whole, natural foods.

    • Greg Hill

      Unfortunately, Alice, this article is about Modified Citrus Pectin
      (MCP), not regular pectin as it is found in fruits. The molecules of
      regular pectin are not broken down by digestion and absorbed into the
      bloodstream while passing through the small intestine. Any effect they
      may have on our health is in the large intestine only. Modified Citrus
      Pectin, on the other hand, is a powder, available as a supplement only,
      which is made by artificially processing pectin in a factory to break it
      down into smaller pieces that can be absorbed into the bloodstream as
      it passes through the small intestine. So we can eat all of the real
      citrus fruit we want, pulp and all, and we will not get from the pectin
      there any of the benefits that are attributed here to MCP, which is not
      found anywhere in any whole, natural foods.

  • Olivia Davenport

    The wonders of nature if we just can understand its power. We shouldn’t be trying to transform our food supply. It is good the way it is.

  • Herbert Klien

    This news has been around for awhile. It just hasn’t been disseminated, you will not hear it on the news. This is one of the top tips and everyone should be finding out about this. I will be sharing this article and hope everyone else does the same.

  • June Diaz

    I don’t buy commercial orange or grapefruit juice. I buy the fruit and use it whole. If I do have orange juice I make it. Lemons are a great addition to home made vegetable juices. It also makes cooked vegetables taste great and on a salad it adds so much flavor.

  • Mark8888

    So, is it possible to obtain the same results with whole citrus fruits? Does regular pectin offer the same effects? Too many questions left unanswered!

  • David_R59

    This article makes me very suspicious. MCP is modified, implying that the substance is not in the fruit in it’s natural form.
    Then there’s the statement that MCP helps chemotherapy work better. This shows me that someone is trying to sell the idea of using chemotherapy. My question now is “Who did the study that discovered this?”.
    It sounds like someone is trying to sell something here!

  • Tom

    2 thoughts: It makes sense that’s galectin-3 would be higher in people with disease such as heart disease, cancer, etc. Just like cholesterol, this is a building chemical the body creates in order to fix itself. As cholesterol is higher in people with damage to their system, I would expect all building blocks to be higher where the body is trying to rebuild, so the blood levels should be higher in such people.
    What we should also expect from this is what Pharma will do with this. They will create a drug to artificially lower the blood levels of galectin-3, as they did with statins for cholesterol. Since doctors are finally beginning to back off the use of statins due to deaths caused by the drugs, now they have another outlet that will attack the same people with just a different route.
    The body’s ability to fix itself is hindered by statins, and whatever drug that is introduced to lower G-3 will do the same thing. People will die, not due to higher levels of G-3, but from the inability to heal. The way these things should be handled is to get to the root cause of why these building block levels are so high and eliminate the cause, not the effect.