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Daily dose of soup drives cancer away

  • With care given by her family, eight year-old Pei-ying is into the third year of recovery from cancer and getting healthier. Photo courtesy: Guang Ming Daily
  • Despite suffering from severe hair loss, Pei-ying received treatments with courage. Photo courtesy: Guang Ming Daily
  • Beetroot is known for its nutritional value. Photo courtesy: Guang Ming Daily
  • Burdock root is good for blood generation. Photo courtesy: Guang Ming Daily

Translated by Chan Li Lin
Guang Ming Daily

KUALA LUMPUR: Three years ago, eight year-old Yin Pei-ying suddenly felt a sharp pain in her abdomen and failed to pass urine. Upon diagnosis, a tumour was detected in her body and she was found to have suffered from the third stage of bladder cancer.

The happy family of four was immediately shattered by the bad news. 41 year-old mother Chen Jin-yu, in particular, was heartbroken to see her daughter enduring the severe side effects of chemotherapy treatments. Chen knew that she could not collapse. By relying on her knowledge in plants and traditional Chinese medicine, she developed a “cancer-fighting diet”. Everyday, Chen would boil soups for her daughter to help her build up her strength, as well as relieve the discomfort caused by chemotherapy and radiotherapy treatments. The girl did not let the family down. She defeated cancer within nine months and currently, she is on the path of recovery.

Housewife Chen and her husband Yin Long-jia (42 years old) have a son and a daughter together. They are 10 year-old Yong-sheng and Pei-ying.

During an interview with Guang Ming Daily, Chen claimed that Pei-ying had always been healthy before she was diagnosed with the disease at five. Initially, Chen brought her to see a doctor but her abdominal pain did not improve but turned for the worse. While passing urine, her stools were discharged at the same time.

“We immediately sent her to the Ampang Hospital but it failed to come up with a diagnosis. Constantly complaining of pain that resulted in cramping all over her body, Pei-ying also saw her blood pressure soar to 170, more than double the normal blood pressure of kids her age at 80 to 90. However, the doctor only administered morphine for pain relief when she felt excruciating pain,” Chen said.

Morphine for pain relief

She added, Pei-ying felt groggy in hospital and upon waking up, she would complain of pain. The doctor would then inject her with another dose of morphine to make her sleep. That continued for 10 days, causing Pei-ying to shed 3kg to 14kg.

“Later, the hospital transferred Pei-ying to the Kuala Lumpur General Hospital for a check-up, in which she was diagnosed as suffering from the third stage of bladder cancer. A 10cm tumour was detected in her body,” Chen said.

As the massive tumour wrapped around her uterus, ovary and urinary tract, an immediate operation to remove it was deemed unsuitable. Pei-ying must first undergo chemotherapy treatments and wait for the tumour to shrink by half before she could go under the knife.

Completely clueless about cancer treatment, chemotherapy and radiotherapy, the family could do nothing but follow the hospital’s professional advices.

After the first chemotherapy treatment, Pei-ying experienced side effects like hair fall, fever and severe mood swings but Chen did not know how to comfort her hot-tempered daughter. Pei-ying was made to remain in hospital for half a month for blood transfusion and observation. She was only allowed to go home after her fever subsided.

Chen knew that it was impossible to endure the suffering on behalf of her daughter and hence, she decided to help her in her diet.

Beetroot and burdock root soups for good appetite

As Pei-ying became hot-tempered, experienced poor appetite and inability to sleep two or three days after chemotherapy treatments, Chen decided to prepare soups boiled from beetroot and burdock root, the main ingredients in her diet plans. Chen added, beetroot has detoxification property, can stabilize emotions, lead to good appetite and enable one to sleep soundly. Burdock root, on the other hand, can enhance blood generation. With these soups, Chen managed to improve her daughter’s appetite without having to spend a lot on expensive health care products. Having eaten well and slept soundly, Pei-ying garnered the strength to fight cancer for one year.

Chen said, Pei-ying was operated on to remove the tumour after the second chemotherapy treatment, followed by another seven chemotherapy sessions. While having her fifth chemotherapy treatment, she received 35 radiotherapy treatments. Pei-ying was originally scheduled to complete the treatments in one year but she needed only nine months to complete the processes.

Recalling the treatments, Chen disclosed that she usually avoided creating any disturbance after every chemotherapy treatment. She would not force Pei-ying to take food but her daughter was required to drink water, especially beetroot soup.

“Every time after drinking beetroot soup, not only did her emotion stabilize but she also managed to sleep soundly. Having enough sleep is essential for patients fighting cancers,” Chen said.

Revealing methods to benefit patients

Chen said, beetroot is mostly consumed in juice form but children may dislike the taste of raw beetroot. Therefore, she decided to boil it into soup.

“Being rich in protein and having blood generation property, burdock root can prevent the need for blood transfusion. My daughter needed blood transfusion in the event of infection and fever, which concerned me the most as they affected the progress of treatments,” Chen said.

Before and after every treatment, Chen prepared beetroot and burdock soups for her daughter. As a result, Pei-ying managed to clear every assessment before undergoing treatments. She only needed blood transfusion in her first chemotherapy treatment and during her operation.

Chen revealed her diet plans after seeing many parents who are clueless about their children’s condition. Each time when the children fail to clear assessment, they receive blood transfusion which essentially delays their treatments. Chen hoped that her diet plans can serve as a reference for families with cancer-stricken members. To date, more than 20 cancer patients have “benefitted” from her recipe.

Don’t purposely hide children’s illness

Apart from the diet, Chen believed that parents must have the right attitude by not hiding the fact that they have cancer-stricken children. On the contrary, they should constantly consult doctors about their children’s diseases and search for useful information.

According to Chen, the children will not have the courage to face the world if their parents are playing the hiding games.

“We can tolerate their behaviours due to the sufferings they have to go through, but we cannot indulge them too much as they will become excessively willful. I was not over-protective of Pei-ying for fear of infection. Instead, I allowed her to lead a normal life but I would pay particular attention to her diet and hygienic aspect,” she said.

According to her, isolating sick children would only increase their psychological burden. Only with right attitudes and healthy body can they battle cancer smoothly.

Chen also thanked her neighbours and friends for extending their help to her family when Pei-ying was undergoing treatments. Their support and donations enabled the family to keep fighting with courage.

Body weight dropped to 11kg

Pei-ying lost her appetite and was almost fully dependent on glucose for survival after receiving treatments. As a result, she lost 6kg to a mere 11kg in just a month. Heartbroken, Chen decided to search for ways to encourage her to eat so that she could get stronger.

“After reading some books and newspapers, I realized that patients suffer a lot when undergoing treatments. Not only do the drugs destroy cancerous cells, they also kill normal cells and severely affect the immune system. In order to battle cancers in the long run, patients must have a strong body. For me, only eating enables one to gain strength,” she said.

Based on her little understanding on traditional Chinese medicine and herbs, she started searching for information. Coupled with some observation on Pei-ying, Chen finally found a recipe that could restore her appetite.

“Many say that patients must not simply take any food during treatments but I have the opposite view. In fact, chemotherapy will seriously affect the appetite and getting children to eat is a difficult task. Moreover, I put my daughter on a diet of vegetables and plant-based food which are beneficial.”

Preparing to face walking difficulty

Having completed her treatment, Pei-ying is now into the third year of recovery. During this period, the soups prepared by Chen allow her to enjoy stable health and she is expected to overcome the disease smoothly.

Though Pei-ying managed to keep her uterus, ovaries and urinary tract, the only regret is that her spine was affected by the disease. Both of her legs are weak and she has started to face difficulty in walking.

Despite this, Chen is grateful that Pei-ying managed to survive the ordeal. The girl may not be able to walk in the future but Chen will face the situation with courage.

Diet a week before chemo treatment

Vegetables: green vegetables, cabbage, bitter gourd, amaranth
Soups: arrow root, lotus root, ABC soup, water cress, beetroot, burdock root
Beans: a little soft bean curd
Fish: regardless of their sizes, any fish with scales can be consumed
Eggs: regular eggs can be taken

Soups:
First week: arrow root
Second week: ABC soup
Third week: water cress
Fourth week: lotus root
Fifth week: burdock root
Sixth week: beetroot

A day before checking into hospital: take beetroot soup, drink water boiled with antelope horn before sleep

Note: Buy RM10 worth of antelope horn, boil in water for half an hour, let it cool and drink before sleep.

Methods to prepare beetroot soup: Get a corn, 15 seeded red dates, a little medlar and soup ingredients. Boil for one and a half hours to two hours. After that, add in organic salt. Do not put in more than 20 dates.

After discharge from hospital (in preparation for next chemo treatment)

First day: beetroot soup
Second day: lotus root soup
Third day: burdock root soup
Fourth day: ABC soup
Fifth day: water cress or arrow root soup

Food to avoid during chemo treatments

Fish types: prawns, crabs, squids and fish without scales
Chicken: plain chicken
Vegetables: water convolvulus
Fruits: mango, durian, pineapple
Mushrooms: various types of mushrooms
Beans: red beans, mung beans, twisted cluster beans
Dairy products: mayonnaise
Pickled and preserved food, white sugar, table salt

Likely symptoms during chemo treatment and ways to tackle them

1. No appetite: try to eat some food to avoid bleeding in the stomach, can drink plenty of boiled or mineral water
2. Vomiting: take antiemetic medicines
3. Fever: try the best possible to keep children away from fever
4. Reduced hemoglobin level: can drink beetroot soup
5. Reduced platelet count: can eat a slice of papaya
6. Hair: it will re-grow

Beetroot prevents blood vessels from clogging

Beetroot has been hailed as the superstar in the world of nutrition. Rich in potassium, phosphorus, sodium, iron, magnesium, glucose, vitamins A, B, C and B8 (biotin) which can stimulate insulin secretion, it also enhances glucose distribution and improves digestion.

Betaine can accelerate the secretion of bile and help to clear up clogging in blood vessels. Meanwhile, zinc enzyme can cure dimethylglycine (also known as DMG), prevent clogging in blood vessels, prevent heart disease and treat depression.

Beetroot has long been consumed as a type of food. Besides increasing cellular oxygen levels, its minerals and plant compounds can lead to detoxification, blood generation and blood purification. In the ancient and traditional medical practices in the UK, beetroot was regarded as the “root of life” due to its importance in treating blood diseases.

Burdock root for blood generation

Rich in dietary fiber and protein and known for its blood generation property, burdock root can hinder the merging of carcinogens and genetic material of the cells and thus, preventing uncontrollable proliferation of cancerous cells. It can even lead to tumour regression and have a reversal effect on cancerous cells.

*Note: Above are only suggestions and it is advisable that patients consult their doctors before having similar diet plans.

 

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