Thyroid Cancer Wellness Protocol
Approximately 1.1 percent of men and women will be diagnosed with differentiated thyroid cancer at some point during their lifetime, based on 2008-2010 SEER data.
In 2011, it’s estimated that there were 566,708 people living with thyroid cancer in the United States and thyroid cancer represents 3.8% of all new cancer cases.
Additionally, recent studies demonstrate that thyroid cancer rates seem to be rising.
The 5 year survival rate from differentiated thyroid cancer is estimated between 97 and 99%, although some less common forms of thyroid cancer have lower survival rates.
Focus on hormone free organic whole foods to decrease exposure to pesticides and hormones.
Among the most well-established risk factors include:
- Exposure to ionizing radiation in the head and neck, especially during childhood. Telomere shortening, which can occur as a result of radiation and chemotherapy, appears to be a mechanism underlying the increased risk of thyroid cancer following these treatments.
- Hereditary factors increase the risk of developing thyroid cancer. New research is focusing on the genetics and epigenetics of cancer development and thyroid cancer may be linked to having the C677T polymorphism in the MTFHR gene. Thyroid cancer occurs more often in some families, and is often seen at an earlier age when they run in families, especially papillary thyroid cancer. Genes on chromosome 19 and chromosome 1 are suspected of causing these familial cancers.
Other risk factors include:
- Hormone influences of estrogen. The rate of thyroid cancer increases at puberty in females and only declines after menopause. Estrogen appears to be a growth factor for both benign and malignant thyroid cells.
- Obesity is associated with risk of papillary thyroid cancer as well more negative outcomes such as severity of the cancer and metastasizes.
- Having diabetes in females. Women with diabetes mellitus are at a greater risk for developing thyroid cancer.
- Low dietary iodine intake. Follicular thyroid cancers are more common in areas of low iodine.
STAY ACTIVE Many studies suggest physical activity reduces risks of all hormone cancers, including thyroid.
Nuclear scan or radioactive iodine uptake (RAI0U) scan. Nodules that absorb more radioactive iodine are known as hot nodules and are more likely benign.CT scan which is a type of X-ray that can diagnose larger thyroid nodules or goiter.MRI can locate tumors, assess tumor size and look for tumor spread.
Thyroid ultrasound can detect a thyroid nodule in a fluid filled cyst or if it is a solid filled mass. However a needle biopsy will need to be done to determine the type of tissue found in the nodule.
Suspicious thyroid nodules will need to be biopsied. Typically thyroid nodules are biopsied using a needle, in a procedure known as fine needle aspiration biopsy.
WATCH YOUR WEIGHT Stay in a healthy weight range. Obesity is a known contributing factor to development of chronic kidney disease as well as a factor in worsening the prognosis of those with renal cancer.This risk appears higher in obese women than in men in some studies.
- Organic fruits and vegetables should be emphasized, as pesticides and bisphenol A may interact with thyroid health
- Whole foods (foods that are as close to their natural form as possible)
- Low sugar/low glycemic diet (Glycemic index (GI) and glycemic load (GL) are measures of the effect on blood glucose level after a food containing carbohydrates is consumed)
- High fiber, from whole grains, beans, vegetables and fruits
- Healthy fats, from avocados, nuts, seeds, olive oil, coconut oil, cold water fish. Frequent adult consumption of saltwater fish decreases the risk of thyroid cancer
- For animal protein, choose lean poultry and fish over red meat, and aim to view meat as a condiment rather than a staple. Try to choose grass fed and organic meats and eggs whenever possible. Eat no fish larger than a salmon to minimize environmental contaminants, including mercury.
- Avoid foods that contain substances called goitrogens, as found in turnips, cabbages, rutabagas, mustard greens, soybeans, radishes, peanuts, pine nuts and millet. Goitrogens have known effects on thyroid functioning.
- Fast foods, fried foods, baked goods and packaged, processed foods
- Sugar, sweeteners and artificial sweeteners
- Vegetable oils, shortening, margarine and anything with hydrogenated or partially hydrogenated oils
REDUCE STRESS Practice mindfulness-based stress reduction, like breathing techniques, yoga, Pilates and meditation.
Multiple nutritional supplements have been associated with reduced cancer incidence and/or cancer progression. This list contains those with the greatest evidence-based benefit.
Vitamin D levels are associated with risk of several types of cancer, including thyroid cancer. Low 25(OH) D blood levels were highly prevalent in people with solid tumors in a retrospective study of more than 30,000 individuals, despite levels infrequently being checked.  Individuals with a history of lymphoma should also monitor 1,25 dihydroxy-vitamin D levels, as rapid conversion to this active form has been observed.
Suggested dose is that sufficient to raise vitamin D blood levels to >40 ng/mL, which may require 5000 IU per day or more.
DIM, abundant in cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, cauliflower and cabbage, has shown anti-tumor activity, and inhibits cancer cell proliferation in estrogen receptor positive and negative cells. DIM displays anti-estrogenic like activity by inhibiting estradiol enhanced thyroid cancer cell proliferation and in vitro metastasis associated events, namely adhesion, migration and invasion.,,
300 mg per day.
Green Tea Extract
Catechins, antioxidants found in green tea, particularly EGCG (epigallocatechin-3-gallate), are known to have numerous anti-metastatic and anti-cancer affects in a variety of cancers that are hormone in nature. A study on human thyroid cells supports the inhibitory role of EGCG on thyroid cancer cell proliferation and motility.
1g EGCG and mixed catechins per day.
Cell studies researched the effects of curcumin on the cell viability, apoptosis, migration and invasion of human thyroid cancer cell lines and found that curcumin produced anti-metastatic activity. The findings project that curcumin might be an effective tumouristatic agent for the treatment of aggressive papillary thyroid carcinomas.,,,
1-2 g per day of Meriva® or Longvida® curcumin.,
Selenium is essential to keep an important antioxidant, called glutathione peroxidase, at proper levels. This enzyme serves to deactivate hydrogen peroxide in thyroid cells, which is a free radical made during the process of iodine and tyrosine combining to make the thyroid hormone thyroxine (T4). A human trial demonstrated that selenium levels were inversely correlated to more advanced thyroid disease.
200 mcg, 1-2 times per day.
Silymarin and silibinin from milk thistle have anti-proliferative and anti-metastatic properties in various cancer cell lines. One study demonstrated that one of the active constituents of milk thistle, silibin, decreased cell migration in thyroid cancer cells.
500mg silymarin per day.
 Davies L, Welch HG. Current thyroid cancer trends in the United States. JAMA Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2014 Apr;140(4):317-22.
 Horn-Ross PL, Lichtensztajn DY, Clarke CA, Dosiou C, Oakley-Girvan I, Reynolds P, Gomez SL, Nelson DO. Continued rapid increase in thyroid cancer incidence in california: trends by patient, tumor, and neighborhood characteristics. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev. 2014 Jun;23(6):1067-79.
 Davies L, Welch HG. Thyroid cancer survival in the United States: observational data from 1973 to 2005. Arch Otolaryngol Head Neck Surg. 2010 May;136(5):440-4.
 Sadetzki S, Chetrit A, Lubina A, Stovall M, Novikov I. Risk of thyroid cancer after childhood exposure to ionizing radiation for tinea capitis. J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2006 Dec;91(12):4798-804. Epub 2006 Oct 3.
 Gramatges MM, Liu Q, Yasui Y, Okcu MF, Neglia JP, Strong LC, Armstrong GT, Robison LL, Bhatia S. Telomere content and risk of second malignant neoplasm in survivors of childhood cancer: a report from the Childhood Cancer Survivor Study. Clin Cancer Res. 2014 Feb 15;20(4):904-11.
 Yang YM, Zhang TT, Yuan L, Ren Y. The association between the C677T polymorphism in MTHFR gene and the risk of thyroid cancer: a meta-analysis. Eur Rev Med Pharmacol Sci. 2014 Aug;18(15):2097-101.
 Brehar AC, Brehar FM, Bulgar AC, Dumitrache C. Genetic and epigenetic alterations in differentiated thyroid carcinoma. J Med Life. 2013 Dec 15;6(4):403-8. Epub 2013 Dec 25.
 Derwahl M, Nicula D. Estrogen and its role on thyroid cancer. Endocr Relat Cancer. 2014 Jul 22. pii: ERC-14-0053.
 Kim SH, Park HS, Kim KH, Yoo H, Chae BJ, Bae JS, Jung SS, Song BJ. Correlation between obesity and clinicopathological factors in patients with papillary thyroid cancer. Surg Today. 2014 Jul 25.
 Xu L, Port M, Landi S, Gemignani F, Cipollini M, Elisei R, Goudeva L, Müller JA, Nerlich K, Pellegrini G, Reiners C, Romei C, Schwab R, Abend M, Sturgis EM. Obesity and the risk of papillary thyroid cancer: a pooled analysis of three case-control studies. Thyroid. 2014 Jun;24(6):966-74.
 Yeo Y, Ma SH, Hwang Y, Horn-Ross PL, Hsing A, Lee KE, Park YJ, Park DJ, Yoo KY, Park SK. Diabetes mellitus and risk of thyroid cancer: a meta-analysis. PLoS One. 2014 Jun 13;9(6):e98135.
 Mack WJ, Preston-Martin S, Bernstein L, Qian D. Lifestyle and other risk factors for thyroid cancer in Los Angeles County females. Ann Epidemiol. 2002 Aug;12(6):395-401.
 Hauser K, Walsh D, Shrotriya S, Karafa M. Low 25-hydroxyvitamin D levels in people with a solid tumor cancer diagnosis: the tip of the iceberg? Support Care Cancer. 2014 Jul;22(7):1931-9.
 Garland CF, French CB, Baggerly LL, et al. Vitamin D supplement doses and serum 25-hydroxyvitamin D in the range associated with cancer prevention. Anticancer Res. 2011 Feb;31(2):607-11.
 Jonklaas J, Danielsen M, Wang H. A pilot study of serum selenium, vitamin D, and thyrotropin concentrations in patients with thyroid cancer. Thyroid. 2013 Sep;23(9):1079-86. doi: 10.1089/thy.2012.0548. Epub 2013 Jul 17.
 Rajoria S, Suriano R, George A, Shanmugam A, Schantz SP, Geliebter J, Tiwari RK. Estrogen induced metastatic modulators MMP-2 and MMP-9 are targets of 3,3′-diindolylmethane in thyroid cancer. PLoS One. 2011 Jan 18;6(1):e15879.
 Rajoria S, Suriano R, Parmar PS, Wilson YL, Megwalu U, Moscatello A, Bradlow HL, Sepkovic DW, Geliebter J, Schantz SP, Tiwari RK. 3,3′-diindolylmethane modulates estrogen metabolism in patients with thyroid proliferative disease: a pilot study. Thyroid. 2011 Mar;21(3):299-304.
 Tadi K, Chang Y, Ashok BT, Chen Y, Moscatello A, Schaefer SD, Schantz SP, Policastro AJ, Geliebter J, Tiwari RK. 3,3′-Diindolylmethane, a cruciferous vegetable derived synthetic anti-proliferative compound in thyroid disease. Biochem Biophys Res Commun. 2005 Nov 25;337(3):1019-25.
 De Amicis F, Perri A, Vizza D, Russo A, Panno ML, Bonofiglio D, Giordano C, Mauro L, Aquila S, Tramontano D, Andò S. Epigallocatechin gallate inhibits growth and epithelial-to-mesenchymal transition in human thyroid carcinoma cell lines. J Cell Physiol. 2013 Oct;228(10):2054-62.
 Belcaro G1, Hosoi M, Pellegrini L, et al. A controlled study of a lecithinized delivery system of curcumin (Meriva®) to alleviate the adverse effects of cancer treatment. Phytother Res. 2014 Mar;28(3):444-50. doi: 10.1002/ptr.5014. Epub 2013 Jun 15.
 Xu X1, Qin J1, Liu W2., et al. Curcumin inhibits the invasion of thyroid cancer cells via down-regulation of PI3K/Akt signaling pathway.. Gene. 2014 Aug 10;546(2):226-32. doi: 10.1016/j.gene.2014.06.006. Epub 2014 Jun 6.
 Zhang CY, Zhang L, Yu HX, Bao JD, Sun Z, Lu RR. Curcumin inhibits invasion and metastasis in K1 papillary thyroid cancer cells. Food Chem. 2013 Aug 15;139(1-4):1021-8. doi: 10.1016/j.foodchem.2013.02.016. Epub 2013 Feb 16.
 Zhang CY, Zhang L, Yu HX, Bao JD, Lu RR. Curcumin inhibits the metastasis of K1 papillary thyroid cancer cells via modulating E-cadherin and matrix metalloproteinase-9 expression. Biotechnol Lett. 2013 Jul;35(7):995-1000.
 Marczylo TH, Verschoyle RD, Cooke DN, et al. Comparison of systemic availability of curcumin with that of curcumin formulated with phosphatidylcholine. Cancer Chemother Pharmacol. 2007 Jul;60(2):171-7.
 DiSilvestro RA1, Joseph E, Zhao S, Bomser J. Diverse effects of a low dose supplement of lipidated curcumin in healthy middle aged people. Nutr J. 2012 Sep 26;11:79. doi: 10.1186/1475-2891-11-79.
 Oh SJ, Jung SP, Han J, Kim S, Kim JS, Nam SJ, Lee JE, Kim JH. Silibinin inhibits TPA-induced cell migration and MMP-9 expression in thyroid and breast cancer cells. Oncol Rep. 2013 Apr;29(4):1343-8.