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Anticancer: A New Way of Life Hardcover – September 4, 2008


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Product Details

  • Hardcover: 258 pages
  • Publisher: Viking Adult; 1 edition (September 4, 2008)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0670020346
  • ISBN-13: 978-0670020348
  • Product Dimensions: 9.3 x 6.3 x 1.1 inches
  • Shipping Weight: 1.2 pounds
  • Average Customer Review: 4.8 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (231 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Best Sellers Rank: #97,450 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)

Editorial Reviews

From Publishers Weekly

After undergoing chemotherapy and surgery for brain cancer, Servan-Schreiber, a clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, asked his oncologist if any lifestyle changes would prevent a relapse; the answer was no. Certain this was wrong, Servan-Schreiber spent months researching a mass of scientific data on natural defenses against cancer. After a lucid introduction to cancer and its causes, he points out studies indicating that a poor diet, unhealthy habits (like smoking), some hormones, and environmental toxins increase risk. But as his advice grows more specific, evidence dwindles that these steps work. Eating organic foods, avoiding red meat and processed food, and eliminating household chemicals seem reasonable, but readers curious about how much turmeric or garlic to consume and how much it lowers their cancer risk will find no answers. Servan-Schreiber also advocates a positive, life-affirming attitude, illustrating with anecdotes of patients whose cancers disappeared when they attained inner peace. Servan-Schreiber underscores that his advice should be an adjunct to, not a replacement for, conventional treatments like surgery and chemotherapy, in this spirited mixture of good medical information, helpful suggestions and alternative medicine. (Sept. 22) ""
Copyright © Reed Business Information, a division of Reed Elsevier Inc. All rights reserved."

From Booklist

*Starred Review* If anyone has the cred, professional and street, to discuss cancer prevention and survival, it is Servan-Schreiber, clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine, cofounder of Doctors Without Borders, and 15-year brain cancer survivor. That he chooses to talk about, even promote, certain environmental, dietary, and emotional adjustments one can make in one’s life that can mitigate suspected carcinogenic influences makes this a slightly controversial book. Typical of his demeanor, though, as researcher-teacher rather than practitioner, he addresses the controversy head-on, cautioning his critics to note that he does not promote these life adjustments in lieu of conventional medical interventions such as surgery, chemotherapy, and radiotherapy. He promotes them in addition to, as a support for, traditional treatments. He calls them anticancer practices. Stay away from white sugar and flour. Eat more cruciferous vegetables and dark-colored fruits. Get regular exercise, and take up yoga or some other form of meditation. These practices made for him a new way of life that he claims helped him beat cancer twice and, he believes, once and for all. This has been a best-seller in France and may well become a valuable resource about personal wars waged on cancer in this country, as well. --Donna Chavez

More About the Author

David Servan-Schreiber, M.D., Ph.D., is a clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and cofounder of the Center for Integrative Medicine.

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Customer Reviews

It is an easy book to read and understand.
Chriss
So the book gives great advice but you had better be willing to make some big changes if you expect his knowledge to help you.
Sattamander
I HIGHLY recommend this book for anyone who has cancer or wants to prevent it.
EMR Mommy

Most Helpful Customer Reviews

Format: Hardcover
In "Anti-Cancer: A New Way of Life," French-born psychiatrist and neuroscientist Dr. David Servan-Schreiber discusses his fifteen-year battle with brain cancer. Although conventional treatments worked initially, the cancer recurred. Fortunately, he has been cancer-free for the past seven years, and he attributes his success to an anti-cancer regimen that, he asserts, boosts the body's natural defenses. Dr. Servan-Schreiber does NOT encourage cancer patients to reject their doctors' advice concerning surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation treatments. However, he does believe that there is nothing to lose and everything to gain by making changes in one's diet, level of physical activity, psychological attitude, and environment.

This book is an informative and eye-opening look at the mechanisms of cancer, explained in a way that a layman can understand. There are many helpful charts, tables, and illustrations that clarify the sometimes technical information about the latest research on the genesis and progression of cancer. The author maps out how rogue cells are nourished and conversely, how they can be starved of the nourishment that they need to multiply. Although researchers have undoubtedly made a great deal of progress, Servan-Schreiber assures us that we have a long way to go before we can declare victory over the many types of cancer that still plague mankind. In addition, he includes well-chosen quotations from literature (such as Tolstoy's "The Death of Ivan Ilyich"), philosophy, and other physicians and scientists to illustrate his points, some of which deal with our fear of dying without having lived a full and meaningful life.

"Anti-Cancer" is a personal, touching, instructive, and thought-provoking.
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216 of 220 people found the following review helpful By Rita Arditti on October 24, 2008
Format: Hardcover
A REVIEW OF ANTICANCER: A NEW WAY OF LIFE by David Servan-Schreiber, MD, Ph.D.
Viking Penguin, 2008. 258 pages. Hardcover, $25.95.

Mind and heart come together in this remarkable book, making it a must read. As a person living with cancer I found it impossible to put down. Servan-Schreiber, a physician and neuroscience researcher, co-founder of the Center for Integrative Medicine at the University of Pittsburgh was diagnosed with brain cancer when he was 31 years old, received treatment and went into remission. Eventually though, he had a recurrence. After the recurrence he started to look into natural approaches to prevent or help treat cancer. The book is both a memoir and a riveting journey through recent developments in the ideas about cancer. We learn about his personal story and how he slowly transformed himself from a laboratory scientist mainly interested in writing papers into a proponent of an integrative approach to cancer treatment who is keenly interested in human beings. He does a marvelous job of connecting the dots in widely dispersed areas of knowledge-all relevant to his interest in cancer and our natural defense mechanisms.

Key ideas presented are: 1) everybody has cancer cells in their bodies, but not everybody develops cancer; 2) we must include the concept of "terrain," our whole being, in any discussion about cancer; and 3) at this point in history, we cannot attempt to deal with cancer without the tools of conventional Western medicine. Based on these ideas, he presents an updated view on cancer growth and how to mobilize our vital mechanisms and use the resources of the body to defend ourselves.

Chapter 4, "Cancer's Weaknesses," presents some of the current thinking about the immune system, inflammation, and angiogenesis.
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183 of 190 people found the following review helpful By Jo Krupinski on September 6, 2008
Format: Hardcover
Being a mom of two small children, I rarely have time to read a book from start to finish without interruption. However, the day I bought this book I had read 40 pages in one sitting and only put it down because the hours sped past midnight before I knew it! I'm very impressed with how Dr. Servan-Schreiber is able to break down extremely complex subjects in cellular and molecular biology in such a way that everyone can understand them. Cancer runs in my family, so I'm always trying to stay current on the science of living healthfully in order to avoid it. This book explains vital information about how to do that. It thoroghly describes what cancer is, how it behaves, and what things are necessary for it to grow. Then Dr. Servan-Schreiber shows you how to deprive a cancer of those things, thus avoiding mestasteses and prolonging life.

Given the cancer epidemic we are currently experiencing in the West, I truly believe this is an important book for everyone to read. You won't regret buying this one.
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72 of 72 people found the following review helpful By Kelly Jadon on September 28, 2008
Format: Hardcover
From: [...]

Book Review: Anticancer: A New Way of Life (Viking, 2008) by David Servan-Schreiber

Both an informational book and an autobiography, Anticancer begins with the premise that all of us have cancer in our bodies, but not all of us will develop the disease. The author, David Servan-Schreiber tells his story of how he discovered his own brain cancer while testing an MRI machine, how he felt about his diagnosis, and what issues he faced. This autobiography is truly fascinating as Servan-Schreiber lowers the privacy walls surrounding his life, to allow us in. He has been a cancer survivor for 16 years. David Servan-Schreiber, MD, PhD, is a clinical professor of psychiatry at the University of Pittsburgh School of Medicine and cofounder of the Center for Integrative Medicine.

As a physician who has also been a patient himself, Servan-Schreiber wants the West to know what the recent discoveries in the world of cancer research are and how they can benefit us. The major points of Anticancer:

* The Western diet creates conditions for the disease.
* Our bodies are making defective cells all of the time.
* Each of us also has a body designed to fight the process of tumor development.
* Sugar and stress do feed cancer.
* There are physical effects from feelings of helplessness and unhealed wounds which affect our ability to restore our health.
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