Naturopathic and Integrative Cancer Support Options Boulder/ Denver

NatureMed is located in Boulder close to Denver just off  Rt 36 (Boulder turnpike). We are a patient centered health clinic. We provide complementary therapies for patients with cancer including intravenous vitamin C, glutathione and other options to minimize the effects of chemotherapy. To address cancer management, the vast majority of cancer patients and survivors use a variety of additional therapies along with conventional cancer treatment. CAM (Complementary and Alternative Medicine) can offer adjunctive approaches that impact favorably on symptoms and disease and have been proven to improve quality and quantity of life. None of our therapies for a patient with cancer are meant to replace conventional oncology care and treatment. 

At NatureMed we have unique resources to provide both conventional and complementary support for cancer patients. Dr Kirsten West is our expert on staff who is board certified in Naturopathic Oncology care. We use an evidence-based approach to provide integrated care for persons affected by cancer or at risk of the development of cancer. In addition we focus on creating personalized programs for health and longevity in people recovering from traditional cancer treatment. View a testimonial.

Available at NatureMed

  • Complementary therapies
  • Therapeutic diets
  • Fitness assessment and individualized clinical exercise programs
  • Chemotherapy side effect reduction
  • Oncology-focused nutrition
  • Advanced integrative therapies
  • Supplement Review and management
  • Cancer prevention strategies

Nutrition plays a role in both the prevention and treatment of cancer. We will discuss diet and nutrients in general as these apply to your individual case. Adequate protein, calories and high-nutrient foods are essential if you are undergoing treatment for cancer. As a part of your plan we will recommend dietary options specific to you, including immune boosting foods designed to reduce side effects of cancer treatment. Optimal nutrition can provide you with several benefits including:

  • Supporting the immune system
  • Preserving lean body mass (muscle)
  • Decreasing your risk of infection strength and increase energy
  • Decreasing side effects of chemotherapy and radiation
  • Speeding healing after treatment
  • Improving overall quality of life

Intravenous Vitamin C
Early clinical studies showed that high-dose vitamin C, given by intravenous and oral routes, may improve symptoms and prolong life in patients with cancer. Double-blind placebo-controlled studies of oral vitamin C therapy showed no benefit. Larges doses (50-100g) given intravenously may result in plasma concentrations that are about 25 times higher than what can be achieved going the oral route. At these high concentrations, vitamin C is toxic to some cancer cells but not to normal cells.

High-dose injections of vitamin C, reduced tumor weight and growth rate by about 50 percent in mouse models of brain, ovarian, and pancreatic cancers, researchers from the national Institutes of health (NIH) report in the August 5, 2008, issue of the Proceedings of the national academy of sciences. The researchers traced Vitamins C anti-cancer effect to the formation of hydrogen peroxide in the extra-cellular fluid surrounding the tumors. Normal cells were unaffected. Source:

Watch a news report on intravenous vitamin C.

Intravenous Glutathione
Glutathione plays important roles in antioxidant defense, nutrient metabolism, and regulation of cellular events (including gene expression, DNA and protein synthesis, cell proliferation and apoptosis, signal transduction, cytokine production and immune response, and protein glutathionylation). Glutathione deficiency contributes to oxidative stress, which plays a key role in aging and the progression of many diseases (including kwashiorkor, seizure, Alzheimer's disease, Parkinson's disease, liver disease, cystic fibrosis, sickle cell anemia, HIV, AIDS, cancer, heart attack, stroke, and diabetes). Oral glutathione is not well absorbed.

Glutathione with Chemotherapy
The use of cisplatin and intravenous glutathione has been studied in several human trials. One human trial found of intravenous glutathione given 20 minutes prior to cisplatin  led to a significant reduction in kidney toxicity in patients with ovarian cancer compared with those receiving cisplatin alone. There was a trend toward greater tumor response in the glutathione group--73 percent, compared to 62 percent in the control group. However, the trend toward greater tumor response with glutathione treatment was comparable. A double-blind trial studied the neuro-protective effect of intravenous glutathione during cisplatin treatment for gastric cancer. After nine weeks, no patient of the 24 receiving glutathione, but 16 of 18 patients receiving placebo, had developed neuropathy symptoms. Again, a trend toward greater tumor response was seen with glutathione treatment.

Glutathione also protects against the neurotoxicity of oxaliplatin, a relatively new chemotherapeutic used in the treatment of colorectal and other cancers, according to the results of a randomized controlled trial reported in the Aug. 15 issue of the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

The importance of managing side effects
The intensive treatments for cancer and indeed the disease itself can be associated with numerous side effects. These include profound fatigue, depression, loss of muscle mass and strength, neuropathy (nerve damage), memory and cognitive problems (chemo-brain), damage to the immune system, alterations in hormones, immune suppression, hair loss and osteoporosis.

Supportive measure and interventions can ameliorate many side effects during treatments. In addition, we attend to the task of reconstituting the components of the body which are affected by cancer therapy in ways which augment overall health and have cancer preventative efficacy. Studies have shown that there are numerous complementary methods which can be given to assist in managing side effects and improving overall quality of the cancer treatments experience.

The importance of exercise
Cancer and cancer therapy may lead to physical de-conditioning with muscle weakness, loss of stamina, and specific neuromuscular problems secondary to treatment. Scientific data shows that cancer survivors who are physically active have improvement in overall health and longevity. At NatureMed we can design and implement an exercise and fitness program which develops aerobic capacity, muscle strength and endurance, core strength, balance, coordination and other specific needs. 

Naturopathic Medicine
At NatureMed we believe in the importance of a whole-person approach to cancer treatment. The goal of naturopathic medicine is to create the condition necessary for optimal physiological function in the least invasive manner. For people with cancer, this is especially critical. Naturopathic medicine takes a holistic, whole-person approach to cancer care. It makes use of time-tested, scientifically grounded, natural methods to strengthen the body's ability to heal itself.

The benefits of NatureMed's Integrated Oncology Program for people undergoing conventional cancer treatment include

  • Support normal physiology during treatment
  • Improve energy and optimize overall quality of life
  • Decrease side effects of cancer treatment
  • Improve immune system recovery and function
  • Developing a plan for long term health and cancer prevention

None of our therapies for a patient with cancer are meant to replace conventional oncology care and treatment. In order to provide optimal care to our cancer patients, we prefer that our patients also have a conventional oncologist.