By allowing ads to appear on this site, you support the local businesses who, in turn, support great journalism.
Ask Dr. Gott 1/15
Bubble gum makes life better for cancer survivor
Placeholder Image
    DEAR DR. GOTT: I guess you could call me a cancer survivor. I was told I had throat cancer in the year 2000. I went through chemotherapy and radiation that caused my salivary glands to malfunction, causing me to have a constant dry mouth that lead to choking and gagging.
    I tried all kinds of prescription medicines for the condition, and nothing really worked until my wife suggested chewing bubble gum, which works very well. Please pass this information on to others.
    DEAR READER: Cancer occurs when normal cells transform, grow and multiply. The cells form a mass known as a tumor. Not all tumors are cancerous, but obviously yours was. Oral squamous cell carcinoma is the most common form of throat cancer, accounting for more than 90 percent of all cancers. Other less common forms include minor salivary-gland tumors.
    Tobacco, snuff, chewing tobacco and alcohol are common risk factors, and men are twice as likely to develop throat cancer than are women. I'm not sure this translates to more men indulging in these two vices than do women, as there is no evidence to substantiate my observation. However, I admit I don't know any women who chew tobacco or use snuff, so perhaps it's a guy thing. In any event, tobacco use — in both inhaled and smokeless forms — should be discontinued, as should excessive alcohol consumption. Cancer patients should follow a balanced diet to avoid nutritional deficiencies.
    Therapies commonly used after biopsy include radiation and surgery, with chemotherapy being used in some advanced cases. It appears your doctor chose to treat your cancer aggressively.
    Radiation can affect healthy as well as cancerous cells of the body, with side effects of dry mouth, fatigue, sore throat, weight loss and difficulties eating and swallowing.
    I have to agree with you that you are a cancer survivor. Congratulations. Follow your doctor's advice, stay off tobacco if you were a smoker and excessive alcohol if you indulged, and keep chewing that bubble gum.
    To give you related information, I am sending you a copy of my Health Report "Viruses and Cancer."

    DEAR DR. GOTT: I've been following your no flour, no sugar way of eating for a year and a half now, and it has been the answer to my prayers! Trying to control my weight for about 40 years, I finally admitted I'm a sugar addict. My doctor is amazed I was able to lower my weight and cholesterol, both of which had been horribly out of control. I'm totally off my cholesterol medicine! Thanks so much for this relatively easy and safe answer to a lifelong problem. I'm making this my lifestyle.
    DEAR READER: I'm truly glad that you had such success with my diet. Thanks for writing.
Sign up for the Herald's free e-newsletter