Stem Cells Featured

The ability to selectively target cancer cells, and cancer stem cells in particular, while leaving intact the non-tumor cells in tissue is extremely important.–Sayer Ji

What are Cancer Stem Cells?

Cancer stem cells (CSCs) create all of the cancer cell types. These are the cancer cells that grow more cancer cells. The inability of surgery, chemo or radiation to kill stem cells is why they work so poorly. 

Nature contains thousands of compounds that have been shown to help fight cancer. Only a few of these can target and destroy cancer stem cells.

Foods and Herbs that Fight CSCs

Some natural cancer stem cell killers may already be known to anyone familiar with alternative anti-cancer therapies:

  • Turmeric, a substance in the Indian spice curcumin, targets CSCs.
  • Ginger has been shown to be up to 10,000 times more effective than certain chemotherapy drugs in killing CSCs.  
  • Blueberries have been found to contain ellagic acid, a cancer stem cell fighter.

stem cells

Recently, Anticancer Research reviewed the scientific literature and published a list containing 25 compounds that find and kill natural cancer stem cells, as well as some of the foods and herbs that contain those compounds:

  • Epigallocatechin-3-gallate (EGCG) – Green Tea
  • 6-Gingerol – Ginger
  • β-Carotene – Carrot, Leafy Greens
  • Baicalein – Chinese Skullcap
  • Curcumin – Turmeric
  • Delphinidin – Blueberry, raspberrry
  • Flavonoids (Genistein) – Soy, red clover, coffee
  • Guggulsterone – Commiphora (myrrh tree)
  • Isothiocyanates – Cruciferous vegetables
  • Linalool – Mint
  • Lycopene – Grapefruit, tomato
  • Parthenolide – Feverfew
  • Perylill alcohol – Mint, cherry, lavender
  • Piperine – Black pepper
  • Platycodon saponin – Platycodon grandiflorum
  • Psoralidin – Psoralea corylilyfolia
  • Quercetin – Capers, onion
  • Resveratrol – Grapes, plums, berries
  • Salinomycin – Streptomyces albus
  • Silibinin – Milk Thistle
  • Ursolic acid – Thyme, basil, oregano
  • Vitamin D3 – Fish, egg yolk, beef, cod liver oil
  • Withaferin A – Withania somnifera (ashwaganda)

Cyclopamine and gossypol are two other substances on the list, but they are found in plants not suggested for human consumption.

Why are These Foods So Important?


There is evidence that the conventional medical treatments actually make stem cells more resistant. There are no drugs currently marketed that target CSCs.

So natural practitioners and wise people are turning to nature’s pharmacy, such as the foods and herbs listed above, in order to benefit from the natural CSC killers they contain.




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