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Some doctors refer to this simply as 'insult'. What happens when you insult a cell so often it gets upset? Just like you or I might do - it gives up on host and sets out for itself. Our consumer culture is presently rich in ways for us to insult our cells and stress them without us even realising.
The growth begins when oncogenes (controlling cell growth and multiplication) in a cell or group of cells are 'transformed' by carcinogens. Cell insult often starts with 'free radicals', which are unstable atoms or molecules produced by body as part of its natural defence against disease. Sometimes body over-reacts in its production of these and produces more than it needs. Recognised stressors that can spark overproduction include cigarette smoke, smog or pollution, too much ultraviolet light, illness or even too much exercise!
Free radicals contain a negative charge that makes them highly reactive. As soon as they are produced they start looking for other molecules with positively charged particles. The reaction they have on meeting is called oxidisation, and this reaction can have a harmful effect, damaging D.N.A. inside cells or cell membranes and opening door for cancer.
When a cell is changed into a tumour-forming type, change in its oncogenes is passed onto all offspring cells. Hence a small group can become established and then start dividing rapidly. Usually these cells 'give up' on their normal specialised task in body and escape from normal controls such as bodily hormones and nerves.
Cancer has no regard for condition of its host only success of its own growth, it is 'anti-synergistic' and a parasite to body, consuming nutrients and contributing nothing. It converts energies around it to its own use and blocks any attacks by suppressing body's own immunity. This immunity self-attack is an emerging pattern in modern diseases.
Cancer cells interact with each other and cells around them. They affect growth of cells nearby and elsewhere in body, they change immune system to benefit themselves, they can avoid or destroy normal body defences such as lymphocytes. They can even persuade body to grow new blood vessels to feed a tumour.
Cancer cells move seemingly 'at will' around body, dissolving glue of healthy cell walls to pass through and set-up camp elsewhere, creating metastases (secondary growths) seemingly anywhere. It is a highly complex disease with over a hundred definable types and many variables within each.
Cancer is a form of chaos that grows inside us. It is no wonder this most frightening and mysterious of diseases is immortalised in 'dreaming mechanisms' of our media. Movies such as Alien series capitalise on our fears of something unknown and unwanted growing inside us.
Cell insult happens in a number of ways and if right conditions for cancer exist it will start to grow through cell multiplication. Once cancer growth gets going, and conditions that engendered it are still present, growth continues at various rates, depending on host and what they provide. Cancer grows best in an P.H. acid body with lots of glucose, oxygen and easily accessible nutrients.
Even with immortal cell replication it can take many years before a cancer becomes noticeable. A million cells together create only a small growth. Diagnosis is still difficult at this stage as there may not be any visible evidence of cancer.
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