Cancer Treatment Centers of America

Naturopathic medicine helps reduce side effects during cancer treatment

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Rob Mccollum: Well, radiation and chemotherapy are the traditional treatments for cancer but they’re only part of the story. What about potential side effects, and overall wellness of the patient? Well naturopathic medicine works to supplement that need, and here to tell us about it is Katherine Anderson. She is the director of naturopathic medicine at the center at The Cancer Treatment Centers of America, Kathleen welcome.

Katherine Anderson: Thank you.

Rob Mccollum: First of all, because I didn’t know it before, tell me what naturopathic medicine is.

Katherine Anderson: Well naturopathic medicine is a system of medicine that uses natural therapies and ultimately uses the body’s - the natures - own healing processes to help affect the healing of the body.

Rob Mccollum: So when you’re talking about natural medicine what does that involve, what’s part of that?

Katherine Anderson: Well, there’s a number of different therapies we’ll use. It includes things like homeopathy, hydrotherapy or water therapy, herbal therapies or botanical medicine.

Rob Mccollum: So these are all the things you think of when you hear of homeopathic nature natural treatments, but this is in a very medical setting. You guys have gone through a doctoral program, and the residency in oncology. How do you use this to help cancer patients specifically?

Katherine Anderson: Well, there’s a number of different ways we use it. First we’re using things that are going to help with building the immune system, also things that are going to help decrease the side effects the traditional therapies like radiation, chemotherapy, or surgery. And then also natural therapies that help fight the cancer itself.

Rob Mccollum: So these are things that not only help with the wellness of the patient outside of it but actually help with the actual treatments that their getting?

Katherine Anderson: Exactly.

Rob Mccollum: Well, a lot of people are worried when they hear natural supplements and botanicals and that sort of thing their worried that it’s kind of this fringe thing that’s outside of medicine. You’ve got some of the supplements here - talk about the safety and the quality of this kind of supplements.

Katherine Anderson: Sure. Well, first it can be really confusing for a lot of patients because they’ll go out to a natural health food store and it’s just so confusing with all the products that are out there. So, we really work to make sure we have quality supplements and we do a lot of that at our center. Some of the supplements I brought here, fish oil which can help a lot as an anti-inflammatory and also with managing cholesterol levels. Also, I brought something called CoQ10 which helps with energy and also helps to protect the heart during cancer treatments. And then also Vitamin D which works to boost the body’s natural immune system.

Rob Mccollum: One of the things that you told me, here we’ve got some shots of the Cancer Treatment Center of America, and this is in Tulsa you’re right up the road in Tulsa is that right?

Katherine Anderson: Yes.

Rob Mccollum: Part of your focus is really treating the whole patient and not just treating a cancer. What does that mean when you say that?

Katherine Anderson: Exactly, it means we’re using things that are going to address all the symptoms the patients are having, but looking at whole person health care, not just the cancer and treating the cancer but the symptoms their having and other things that are going on with them as well.

Rob Mccollum: So tell me why you got involved with this in the first place. Why was this branch the best one because you had to go through was it again a four year program you told me?

Katherine Anderson: Exactly.

Rob Mccollum: And then the two year residency, why was naturopathic medicine important to you?

Katherine Anderson: Well, I just really believe in the body’s own inherent ability to heal itself along with traditional therapies. So, I think it’s just really important that we honor and respect through the body’s natural healing process and that’s exactly what naturopathic medicine does in an integrative fashion used along with traditional medicine.

Rob Mccollum: So it’s not a an alternative, this is just part of the entire package that people can use when their going through this, what can be a very traumatic situation.

Katherine Anderson: Exactly. It’s there to support the body, help with healing, and ultimately give a better outcome.

Rob Mccollum: Alright, well I appreciate you very much for being here. You can find out more information about naturopathic medicine at the Cancer Treatment Centers of America. Just call 800-333-CTCA or you can log on to

During this four-minute live interview, Naturopathic Medicine Director Katherine Anderson, ND, from Cancer Treatment Centers of America in Tulsa discusses how naturopathic medicine can help reduce side effects during cancer treatment. Katherine also explains how it can help fight cancer and build a patients immune function.

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