Ep.21: Beat Cancer with Chris Wark
I have a really exciting subject for you today, and someone to introduce you to who is one of my favorite people on the planet. His name is Chris Wark, and he’s going to talk about living a high vibration life by avoiding or beating cancer. I know that doesn’t sound like the most high vibration topic, but you’re going to learn a lot here. He has an amazing story of how he healed from colon cancer at age 26 through alternative treatment. He’ll also discuss some of the most high vibration foods and lifestyle choices that can help you obtain optimal health.
LINKS AND RESOURCES
Chris’ blog: http://www.chrisbeatcancer.com/
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Robyn: Hey, everyone. It’s Robyn Openshaw. Welcome back to Your High Vibration Life. I have a really exciting subject for you today, and someone to introduce you to who is just seriously one of my favorite people on the planet. I call him my brother. He may not be one of my actual six biological brothers, but I always call him my brother. I’ve been so excited to watch his career just go crazy. He’s speaking on stages everywhere. He is coming out with something really exciting I want to tell you about, but the topic of our talk today, with Chris Wark, is your high vibration life and cancer.
Now, I know that that doesn’t sound like a high vibration topic, but you’re going to learn a lot here. I’m not going to tell his story, and I’m not going to be a splinter here. I want him to tell it. That’s the back story, but I want you to meet Chris Wark and hear about his incredible back to health story. Chris, I’m just waiting for this interview. It’s kind of weird that I didn’t tell the name of your website or anything much about you, but that’s because we’ll get to that in a bit. I want to start with taking you back 13 years ago. Tell us about your life, starting 13 years ago.
Chris: Well, thanks, Robyn. Yes. I’m excited to do that. 13 years ago, December 2003, I was diagnosed with stage IIIC colon cancer. I was 26, which as you know, is pretty freaking weird for a 26-year-old to get a cancer that usually people get in their 60’s, 70’s, 80’s. Completely took me by surprise. Wasn’t expecting to have cancer or cancer diagnosis. I’d had some abdominal pain, thought it was an ulcer, and you know, it got worse and worse over a course of most of the year, really.
Somewhere between six and nine months, it had been bothering me, and then I finally got a colonoscopy, which you don’t do when you’re 26, but anyway, there it was golf ball-sized tumor. At that point, I was told, “Well, okay. You’ve got colon cancer.” We took a biopsy, called me a day later, and they said, “Yeah, it’s definitely colon cancer, right? We need to get you into surgery right away because this is going to spread. It’s going to kill you if we don’t cut it out.”
Now, I was a very typical cancer patient, completely clueless, and was just like “Okay, doc, whatever you say.” Like freaked out. We just rushed into treatment. Now, this was two days before Christmas, which I was like, “Look, I can’t.” I mean, they wanted to have me in surgery the next day, right? I was like, “I can’t be in the hospital on Christmas. Can we just postpone this like a week?” They’re like, “Yeah, that’s fine.”
I go in on December 30th. They cut out a third of my large intestine. I woke up after the surgery, and they’re like, “Listen, it’s worse than we thought. We thought you were stage II, you’re stage IIIC. You’re going to need nine to 12 months of chemotherapy.” Now, the reason is because metastatic colon cancer is the second leading cause of cancer death in the US. The reason it’s the second leading cause of cancer death is because surgery doesn’t cure it, and chemo doesn’t either. They said I needed nine to 12 months of chemotherapy. At that, I didn’t know anything about anything, so I was just like, “Okay. I guess this is my life now. I’m a cancer patient now. I’m 26.”
At that time, even growing up, I struggled with insecurity. I think a lot of people do, but that was my most insecure moment right there, right? If you’re ever insecure, and then you get a cancer diagnosis, you’re feeling really good about yourself. A couple of things happened in the hospital that really made me think that something’s not right about this. The first thing that happened was … Remember, they cut out a third of my large intestine, okay? Sewed it back together, and then brought me some food. The food they brought was a sloppy joe, a sloppy joe. They put it in front of me and I was just like … I just remember thinking like, “What is this? What?” I was on heavy, heavy pain drugs, right? Like, everything was a total blur, but they put it in front of me, and I’m just like, “Where am I? Is this summer camp. Why are they serving sloppy joe’s to sick people in the hospital?” This is such a crappy food that you can’t even order it at a restaurant. Am I right?
Robyn: You’re right.
Chris: Restaurants do not sell sloppy joe’s. Anyway, I’m like, “Man.” I did eat some of it. I was starving. I hadn’t eaten in several days and all that. I just remember thinking, “Why in the world are they serving this to sick people and cancer patients, me?”
The next little red flag that happened was the day I was supposed to leave the hospital, the surgeon comes in to check on me. We had a little talk or whatever. I was kind of concerned about what I was supposed to do when I got home, right? I mean, they cut out part of my digestive system. I mean, everything you eat goes through there. I’m worried about is there food I should eat, or maybe avoid. I’m like, “Hey, is there any food I need to avoid?” He was like, “Nah. Just don’t lift anything heavier than a bear.”
I was like, “Oh, okay. That’s all we got to say about that?” That was it. I mean, that was like … He’s like, “Basically, it doesn’t matter what you eat. Just don’t strain yourself.”
Robyn: Do you feel like this is typical for cancer patients …
Chris: This is very typical. Yeah. They all get the same information from their doctor, which is it doesn’t matter what you eat. Go home and eat whatever you want. Nothing you did contributed to your disease. Therefore, nothing you can do matters. You just show up for your treatments, and we’ll take care of the rest. You just enjoy as much ice cream, pizza, cheeseburgers, milkshakes, much as you want. Make sure you get enough calories. That’s all they’re concerned about, because chemo is going to make you so sick you’re not going to want to eat anything. You’re going to lose a ton of weight, and so they want you to eat really high calorie food, which is junk food.
I went home. I was sleeping on the couch. Sometime during those first few days of being home, as I started to sober up, and I really wanted to get off the pain medication. I didn’t like being doped up. You just had his instinct that like I needed to get off this pain medication. Well, I learned years later that morphine drugs promote metastasis, which is insane. They’re giving morphine drugs to cancer patients every day. Anyway-
Robyn: Well, what’s the food of cancer?
Chris: Cancer loves sugar, but it is a little more complicated than that, because cancer also feeds on cholesterol. It requires iron, and also can … the adrenaline fat, you know? People think it can’t run on fat, but tumors can adapt and use fat for fuel.
Okay. I’m thinking about my life and about my next steps and thinking about chemotherapy, and the idea of poisoning my way back to health did not make sense to me. I just couldn’t see myself as a chemo patient, right? I mean, I was already bone-thin, and my instincts, my gut, my intuition, whatever you want to call it, was saying don’t do it, but I didn’t know what else to do. I didn’t have another option. I didn’t know anything about anything. I prayed about it.
My wife and are Christians, and we just prayed. I was like, “God, I don’t know what to do. This doesn’t feel right. If there’s another way, besides chemotherapy, just please show me.” Just a very sincere help me prayer, you know? Two days later, a book shows up on my doorstep, and this book was sent to me from a man who lives in Alaska. I’m in Tennessee. This guy was a business acquaintance of my dad. He sends me this book, it’s called, “God’s Way to Ultimate Health.” I’m like, “Oh, what’s this about?”
I start reading the book, and I learned very quickly in the first chapter that the author was a pastor. His mother had been diagnosed with colon cancer, went through all these treatments, suffered and died just a horrible death. Then, he had seen a lot of his church members suffer and die from cancer treatment. Then, he got a diagnosis of colon cancer in his 50’s, and refused treatment. Well, he didn’t really refuse it, he didn’t know what to do. He had sort of a health nut buddy that was like, “Man, you need to get on the raw food diet and start drinking a bunch of carrot juice.” He was like, “Well, I don’t want to do what my mom did, because the treatment didn’t work for her, and she suffered and all that.”
He converted to the raw food diet, and within a year, the tumor was gone. I’m like, “Wow, this is amazing. I can’t believe this book showed up on my doorstep. I’m pretty sure this is an answer to my prayer.” I got really excited about it. I was like, “This is what I’m going to do. This is it. I asked for something, and this is what showed up, so this is what I’m going to do.”
I call my wife. She was at work. I was really excited. I was trying to tell her about the book, and like … The conversation didn’t go well, right? I’m like, “I’ve got this book, and there’s this guy heals cancer with a raw food diet. We need to get a juicer.” I’m probably talking 90 miles an hour, and my wife’s like, “Okay. You’re still doing chemo, right?” I’m like, “No, I don’t want to do the chemo, and blah, blah, blah.”
As soon as we hang up the phone, other family members are calling me. They’re calling me saying, “Chris, we heard you were thinking about not doing chemo. I know someone who did that and they died. Don’t you think if the doctors had something better, they would be using it?”
Robyn: My favorite question.
Chris: I’m like, “I don’t know. I just happily read the first two chapters of this book.” Right? I don’t know. I am like trying to believe that this is the answer to my prayer, and then everybody’s telling me like, “No, it’s not.”
Things got really complicated in that moment, because I had this simple answer to prayer. I was really excited about it. I was full of faith, and then all of a sudden, everyone around me is saying, “No, no. That’s not an answer to prayer. That’s a mistake. You don’t do that.” The only person in my life at the time that was sympathetic was my mom. My mom was like the Green Smoothie Girl of the 80’s, shopped at the health food store, had stacks and stacks of books written by everybody. I mean the who’s who of raw food and nutrition, Jack LaLane, all the Paul Bright books. I mean, you name it. She had the Sunfood Diet. I mean, she had this insane library of health and healing books, and had never been sick. Like, my mom never had any health issues at all.
At the same time, she didn’t raise me like a hippie. She bought like normal kind of food, right? She was the kind of mom that would buy like wheat bread instead of white bread. She would buy like the peanut butter you had to stir, instead of the Jif, which I really wanted.
Anyway, I still ate what I would consider a pretty Western diet growing up. I tell my mom about this book, and she’s like, “I’ve got some books. I’ve really been thinking and praying about your situation. I’ve got some books that I think you should take a look at.” There was an amazing sort of confirmation, that my mom had been storing up all these books her whole life, since the early 70’s. Here it was 2003, so 30 years of books. I went from book to book, right? By the way, at that time, the Internet was not helpful. I got on the Internet, and most of us don’t remember that the Internet in 2003 was like pretty crappy. There was no social media. There were no videos on the Internet in 2003. There were a few websites about like alternative cancer therapies, but they were really sketchy, and like some guy just kind of hacked together in his garage kind of websites, and didn’t inspire much confidence.
All I had were just sort of a handful of books to start with. It just started with one person’s testimonial. It was all I needed. It was enough for me. Again, everybody me was just scared. I reluctantly agree to go see the oncologist. We go to the clinic. The parking lot’s packed. Go on the waiting room, it’s packed. It reminded me of the first day … I went to three high schools. It reminded me of like that kind of first day of school, when you’re walking into the lunch room, and you’re looking around like, “Okay. Who’s in here? Anybody like me I can sit by?” I’m scanning the room. It’s like, “Well, you’re in the cancer club now. Let’s see who else is in here.” It was all old people.
Now, nothing against old people, but I was 26, like kind shag, rock dude hair, handlebar mustache. I’m a musician, too, so I’ve been playing in bands and toured and done all that stuff. I’m looking around. I’m like, “There’s nobody in here like me at all.”
We sit down, and we’re watching the morning show, whichever one it was, and out comes Jack Lalane. He comes out and they’re interviewing about something, I don’t remember what, but he just starts going off, right? I mean, he’s like 5’2″. He’s real stocky. He was probably in his 80’s at that time, and was just passionate about nutrition, fitness and health. He was just going on and on about the reason we’re all sick is because we’re eating all this man-made, processed food, and we’ve got to get back to whole foods from the earth, fruits and vegetables, especially raw, and juicing. He said, “If man made it, don’t eat it.”
I mean, I was glued to the television. I could not believe it was on at that moment when I was in the waiting room. I turn to my wife and I’m like, “Can you believe this is on right now?” She’s like, “That’s pretty weird.” We go back and see the oncologist. The meeting did not go well. This guy comes out, and he’s like … Obviously, he’s looked through my chart. He’s like, “Okay, you’ve got stage IIIC colon cancer. You’re going to need 5-FU and leucovorin chemotherapy. By the way 5-FU chemotherapy fluorouracil, has been around for 60 years.
Robyn: Yeah. So much for cutting-edge cancer treatment, right?
Chris: They’ve been using that stuff for 60 years. Nothing better has come along in 60 years? I didn’t know that at the time. Learned it later.
Robyn: That was 13 years ago, and they’re still prescribing it.
Chris: It’s bananas. Yeah, that was 13 years ago. They’re still prescribing 5-FU. Anyway, but he says, “Here’s the chemo you’re going to get. You’re going to get sick. You’re not going to feel good. You’re going to lose your hair and stuff,” the standard pitch. I had been on the raw food diet for a week. He’s telling me this stuff. At some point, I said, “Well, what about the raw food diet? Can I do that while I do chemo?” He says, “No, no, no. That’ll fight the chemo. You can’t do that.” I’m like, “What you talking about, Willis?”
Then I said, “Well, are there any alternative therapies available?” At that moment, his demeanor changed. It was like flipping a switch. He became very arrogant and condescending. He looked at me dead in the eye and he said, “No. If you don’t do chemo, you’re insane.” Just a wave of fear came over me. I mean, it was just like … Then, he’s just talking down to me. I don’t even hear what he’s saying. Everything’s getting blurry. When you’re afraid, your stress hormones start pumping. When your stress hormones pump, adrenaline and cortisol, when they circulate through your body, they actually cause physiological changes in your body. One of them is they affect your brain function, right? You don’t think clearly or rationally or logically, your emotions take over, and you become very animalistic, and your memory doesn’t work very well.
I don’t even know what all he said to me. He was just talking. I was just like in a daze. One thing popped out. He’s talking blah, blah, blah, and then all of a sudden, he’s like, “Look, man. I’m not saying this because I need your business.” I was like, “Whoa. Hang on. Wait. What just happened?” I was in sales for years. One of the first things they taught me in sales was a technique called “The push away.” The push away is where you act like you don’t need their business, right? You’re selling but then you kind of take it away. “I don’t need your business.”
I’m like, “This dude just did the push away to me right now. What’s going on? What does business have to do with cancer treatment? I thought doctors were like angels or something.”
Robyn: Were you aware at the time that he would get part of the chemotherapy paid for by your insurance?
Chris: No I didn’t know then… private practice oncologist make up to 60% of their income from the profit off of chemotherapy drugs, because they buy the drugs direct from the manufacturer, mark them up, and then sell them to you a.k.a. bill your insurance company, and they get this really nice profit margin on the top. They have a very strong incentive to prescribe chemotherapy, because that’s where they make their dough. I didn’t know that. I did not know anything about the cancer industry or the business of oncology at that moment. I just knew he said some couple weird things to me that didn’t sit right.
Now, having said all that, even though I got these clues, in the moment I was still really fearful and stressed, right? I’m in this really stressful conversation, confrontational conversation with the doctor. He kind of finishes his diatribe, or whatever, and we’re like, “Okay.” We get up, we leave the little office. Like a robot, I just go straight to the desk and make an appointment to get a port put in to start chemo. Then, we walk out to my wife’s car and got in her car and sat there and held hands and cried and I just like choked through a prayer, because I was so discouraged and afraid. I went into that clinic confident in what I was doing and feeling really good about what I was doing, and I walked out of there, terrified.
That’s what happens to most cancer patients. I mean, not that they walk in on a raw food diet, but the cancer industry, a lot of people … I have to be careful. I don’t want to just demonize the whole industry, or every doctor, but I’ve talked to a lot of patients, and they report back to me, and I hear it over and over and over, is doctors use fear to motivate them to take action, right? The pitch is, if you don’t do what I say, you’re going to die.
Robyn: Right. That’s basically the best sales pitch there ever was.
Chris: Yeah. I mean, the biggest motivator in the world is the fear of death. Anyway, we go home. I really thank God that I had time. I had three weeks before I was going to start chemotherapy, because I was still healing from the surgery. I had time to like get my wits about me. The next day, I went and saw … I heard about a nutritionist, naturopath guy in Memphis. I went and saw him. I meet with him. We talk about everything. I tell him what I’m doing. I said, “Yeah, I’m on this raw food diet. I read this book.” He said, “I know. I’ve read the book. I know all about it. You made the right decision. You’re doing the right thing.”
He was the first person to tell me that, and it was a huge confidence booster to have someone validate what I was doing. Like, I love my mom, but like mom doesn’t really count, because it’s your mom. Especially when you’re an only child, they think everything you do is fantastic. Then, he connected me with an integrative oncologist named Dr. Roy Paige. Now, he’s deceased now, but Dr. Paige had come out of retirement in his 70’s because he didn’t like being retired. He just liked being a doctor. Dr. Paige was a surgical oncologist, but he did some integrative therapy, because he had spent a lifetime treating cancer patients with chemo and surgery and watching it fail them. He just really cared about people and he wanted to try to find non-toxic therapies that could help boost their immune system, and just help them get well.
Anyway, I connected with him, and did a consultation. In our first meeting, he was very guarded about what he would say to me. He just said, “Well, you know, the standard treatment for your type of cancer is chemotherapy, or whatever.” I said, “Yeah. I’ve decided I don’t want to do that.” He was like, “Okay.” That was the last time he ever brought it up.
He did IV vitamin C therapy, high-dose IV vitamin C like between 40 and 60 grams, dripped over two hours. We did a lot of those treatments. He ordered blood work for me, ordered a few CT scans about every six months for the first couple of years, and we were just keeping a very close eye on my blood and my body to make sure that what I was doing was working. He was concerned, right? I mean, he just knew the odds were not in my favor, and that a recurrence was imminent.
I should mention that there’s been some really fascinating developments in cancer research. Even just this past year, a really fantastic study came out where we now know with absolute certainty that once a cancer site in the body is big enough to detect, which should be like a millimeter, which has a hundred million cells or more in it, you already have metastasis.
Robyn: There is no stage 1 cancer ever caught, right?
Chris: That’s right. You know, I first heard this from our mutual friend, Dr. Thomas. I’ve first heard this from him years ago. I was like, “Wow, really?” It’s true, stage one is metastatic, because circulating tumor cells and circulating stem cells leave the primary tumor site very early before it’s even stage I, they leave. They will find new places to hang out in other parts of the body, like bone marrow or other organs, or wherever. That’s why surgery doesn’t cure most cancers, because those circulating tumor cells have already spread. They’re already in other parts of the body.
What has to happen is we all know that your immune system is the reason you don’t have tumors, but this is not a new concept. This concept goes back to Hippocrates, or even further, that your body can heal, right? If your body created it, your body can heal it if you give it the proper nutrients and care. Yes, it’s all about the immune system.
There’s many components to health and healing, but A, nutrition supplies your body with the raw materials that it can use to repair, regenerate, and detoxify. For me, it was a long process of overdosing on nutrition, which was my basic strategy, and detoxification, which happens anyway when you stop putting toxins in. Your body will flush things out. I mean, it’s flushing things out every day. Whether you like it or not, it’s always detoxifying, but-
Robyn: We’re going to send you to it right now, and also put in the show notes. Chris has a resource that, I think, is possibly the most helpful thing I’ve ever read about cancer prevention, and it’s called 20 Questions for Your Oncologist. You can get it at greensmoothiegirl.com/Chris, okay? Greensmoothiegirl.com/Chris. The thing I love about it is it’s not just so that you can walk in. Please go get it even if you don’t have cancer, or your sister doesn’t have cancer, or your mom doesn’t have cancer, because I want you to go get that and have it even if you don’t have cancer, nobody close to you has cancer, because if one in two of us is getting cancer, having that isn’t just a good thing to read before you go meet with an oncologist who’s going to do some witchcraft on you and make a death sentence on you so that you buy the chemo, but it’s also just reading the questions will give you a massive education in what to know about cancer, in general.
He’s totally like underselling that. It’s more than 20 questions. Nobody’s going to be able to ask an oncologist all those questions even in a two hour appointment, but you do want to say to your oncologist, “I need two hours with you. What’s it going to take?” Greensmoothiegirl.com/Chris to make it easy for you. Get that 20 Questions for Your Oncologist.
Chris has finally … I’m so excited about this. I’ve gone through the whole thing because I am a cancer researcher, and sort of a cancer junkie. So much of my family has been affected by cancer. I’ve gone through his whole course before he launched it, but he’s finally put together the cancer course of what he did A to Z, getting rid of all the froufrou, and all the fluff, and all the stuff he doesn’t think made difference, and it’s called Square One. He is basically showing you exactly what to do, holding your hand along the way. It’s video. It is so nurturing. You can tell he’s really funny.
I want you to know that that resource is there for you. I want everyone to have it even if cancer has not been part of your world yet. Tell us what a cancer preventative or a cancer treatment diet looks like, and what the crappy diet is, the worst of the bad that cause cancer.
Absolutely. Thanks for the big plug. You know, the 20 questions guide, if anybody misses, it’s free, right? I created it because so many cancer patients, myself included, go into their oncologist, they go to see the doctor, and they have no idea what’s about to happen to them. They don’t know the right questions to ask. Guess what, doctors are busy, and they skip a lot of important details. They just tell you the basic stuff, like, “You’re going to need chemo, your hair’s going to fall out. You’re not going to feel good. We have some other drugs to maybe help you with the nausea and stuff.” Like, that’s about it. There are so many critical questions that if you ask them, you’ll get very surprising answers that may lead you to make some very different decisions.
You really absolutely need to know what you’re getting into before you sort of sign your life over to someone who wouldn’t remember your name if they saw you in the grocery store next week. That’s the purpose of the 20 questions guide. It’s a one-hour audio, and you can download the transcript to read it if you prefer to read it. Anyway, get that.
Now, the diet. What I did was I converted to a raw vegan diet, a hundred percent raw fruits and vegetables. The premise was that, in the first book I read, was that like, look, God created the earth. Everything we need comes from the earth. I was like, “This is kind of crazy. I’ve never heard of the raw diet.” I mean, this is 2003. Nobody was talking about the raw food diet. It was not cool or hip. There were no hip young twenty somethings on a raw food diet, at least on the Internet. All the raw food people I came across during that time were just like kind of old and weird.
I didn’t feel like a cool, awesome dude, but I was like, “Okay. I’m going to do this.” What I did was I got this book, and I’m starting to figure out, “Okay, how am I going to do this? I’ve got a juicer.” I started making 64 ounces of vegetable juice every morning, and I would drink it throughout the day. It’s about eight, eight ounce servings of vegetable juice, mostly carrot juice, but then I ended up kind of improving the formula with some help from my nutritionist, naturopath. We added beet to it, and celery, and ginger root.
Now, my sort of amped up formula also includes lemon juice, green apple, turmeric root, and then garlic. That’s a super potent amped up version. The point is I was drinking 64 ounces of juice every morning, I mean, all day. Making it in the morning, drinking it all day. Then, for lunch, I made a giant salad. In the beginning, I got some raw food cookbooks, and I was trying to figure out how am I going to do this. I realized pretty early on that I don’t like to cook, and all these raw food books had like all these steps, you know, like you’ve got to buy a dehydrator, and then you make these raw crackers, you make like a raw pizza crust, or something. I don’t know.
I was like looking at all these recipes like, “This is a lot of work. I don’t know. I don’t think I’m going to be able to keep this up.” I had to really distill it down just to the simplest daily protocol, because I knew my own limitations. Like, I’m going to fail at this if I don’t make it so ultra-simple that I can just do it every day without thinking about it, just make it just sort of like a mindless practice, right? I realized like, okay, I want to be overdosing on nutrition. I want to be getting like every vegetable on earth … not possible … but a long list of vegetables in my body every day, twice a day. The only way to do that is a giant salad, because raw food recipes usually don’t have that many ingredients, not like a salad would.
I took all the most potent anticancer vegetables that we know from nutritional science are the most potent. I didn’t even know that at the time. I was just really running on instinct, and some claims that people made in books before we had good nutritional science about this. I would start with spinach or kale, some kind of leafy green, broccoli, cauliflower … excuse me … red cabbage, red onion, mushrooms, peppers, lots of garlic powder, oregano, turmeric powder, curry powder, and then I would top it with sprouts. I would sprout beans like mung beans or lentils or garbanzo beans. I throw some nuts on there, almonds or walnuts, some days, an avocado.
I just make this monster salad, and then I would use a homemade dressing, which is super easy, apple cider vinegar, Bragg, of course, and then a Bragg olive oil, which I don’t think the olive oil is really necessary anymore. At the time, I just used olive oil and an apple cider vinegar, like an oil and vinegar, and even a squeeze of lemon juice on top of the salad. It will just knock you out. It is so good. It’s just delicious. So many spices and vegetables in there. I mean, everyone I’ve ever made it for is like, “Whoa. This is great.” Anyway, you can Google giant cancer fighting salad. You’ll find a video of me making it from years ago.
Robyn: You really can’t do any better than that. I mean, you just named about 40 of the most anti-cancer foods there are, that are available to us. What a miracle that we can get this stuff year-round, like 365 days a year, at five grocery stores within five miles of your house. Everything isn’t bad in the world these days. Like, when has that ever been a possibility for people? We have, at our disposal, a lot of tools to rehabilitate our immune system and feed it what it needs to get on top again.
Chris: Absolutely. Back then, there was only one place in town that sold organic produce, that was Whole Foods. Now, you can get it everywhere.
Robyn: It’s a great time to eat healthy.
Chris: Yeah, I buy giant bags of organic berries at Costco now. I mean, it’s fantastic. Yeah, it’s way better. All I had was Whole Foods. My grocery bill tripled back then, because it really was super way more expensive compared to the way it is now. To me, at that time, I just made a decision. This is the most important thing I can spend my money on, the most important thing is on food. I was looking at it like food and nutrition is what’s going to help me. Food is medicine, right?
I created this very simple plan, juicing every day, giant salad for lunch and dinner, and then I started incorporating a fruit smoothie. I would get fresh organic … Of course, I went 100% organic. That’s really important, because when you eat conventional produce, you’re eating pesticides, herbicides and fungicides, and other kinds of toxic chemical fertilizer stuff. You want to reduce your toxic load as much as possible when you’re trying to heal, or if you just want to stay well. Everything was organic. No exceptions.
Anyway, we know now that berries are the most potent anticancer fruits, because berries are rich in anthocyanins, and ellagic acid and all these wonderful anticancer compounds. Let me be back up to the vegetables, cruciferous vegetables and allium family, which is garlic, onions and leeks, are the most potent anticancer vegetables. There’s a number of reasons why, and specific compounds like Allison, which is in garlic. In cruciferous vegetables, there’s two that are worth mentioning. One is sulforaphane. Sulforaphane is a liver detoxifier. It’s the most potent liver detoxifier known in food. Broccoli sprouts have the highest concentration of sulforaphane. You want to eat broccoli sprouts every day.
As much cruciferous vegetables as you can get in your body every day. It’s just awesome for you. They also have a compound called indole-3 carbinol. Indole-3 carbinol activates … basically, your intraepithelial lymphocytes, which are immune cells in your gut. It’s your body’s first line of defense. It’s almost like it wakes them up and tells them like, “Hey, get on patrol.”
I didn’t know any of these back then. Then like once I started to find the nutritional science about it, I was like, “Well, okay. That explains why this helped me get well.” I created this protocol, and I just stuck with it, like every single day. No exceptions. I became brutally efficient, all right? Because I knew exactly what to buy at the grocery store. I didn’t have to plan my meals, because I knew what they were going to be, and I ate every single thing I bought, which is like amazing, because you know how much food we typically throw away? I heard an expression that I stole from Jeff Walker, he probably saw from someone else, but “100% is easy, 99% is hard.”
I mean, as soon as he said it, I was like, “That is the truest statement ever spoken,” because for me, yeah, I went 100% all the way, and it was easy, but you know when people try to make little changes, like, it’s not going to help you.
Robyn: Well, when you’ve got this plate here. Well, I’m going to eat some sugar, and I’m going to drink some alcohol, and I’m going to do these things. You know, I’ve actually, since you said that to me the first time not long ago, I’ve totally ripped it off, and I’ve been repeating it and pretending like it’s my own quote. No, not really pretending like it’s my own quote.
Chris: It’s okay.
Robyn: I really just wanted to let your story play out because it’s astonishing, fast forward, 13 years. Everyone, I saw Chris post on his Facebook page just in the last few weeks, “This is my 13th year cancer-versary.” What are the statistics, Chris? Because you were talking about how bad the outcomes are for people that are 22, have stage IIIC cancer. You know what, there’s no control group to study who did what you did, because nobody does and do it. Nobody outside of chemotherapy and radiation. I mean, what you did is a one in a million thing.
What are the odds? Now, you’ve gone back and you’ve looked at the statistics. If you have stage IIIC colon cancer, and then you inject your veins with all kinds of heavy metals and carcinogens, and then you radiate your self potentially, what is the outcome for someone to survive 10 years? I mean oncology doesn’t talk about cure anymore. That’s like irresponsible. They all see it that way. How many people with stage IIIC cancer, who do this standard of care, how many of them live 10 years?
Chris: Well, I wish I had an easy answer for it, but there isn’t an easy answer because age is a big factor, how old they are when they’re diagnosed, whether they’re stage IIIA, B or C. There’s so many other factors at play. For me, from all the research I’ve done, I had about a 28% chance of being alive in five years, and a less than 20% chance, like maybe 16 to 18% chance of being alive in 10 years, because there’s a lot of other factors, like even just if the tumor’s on your right side, you have a lower chance of survival, and the tumor was on my right side.
There’s like all these other little factors, variables that play into it, but every single one of them was stacked against me. Here I am. Why I believe I’m here is not because I got lucky. It’s not because surgery cured me, because surgery isn’t curing metastatic colon cancer for people, like I said in the beginning. It’s the second leading cause of cancer death. The difference was because I took massive action. I changed everything, and I rebuilt my body.
I changed my internal terrain. This is a medically documented expression, but when you read cancer research, they talk about whether or not the internal terrain is hospitable to cancer growth. I changed my internal terrain through nutrition, and made it inhospitable to cancer growth, right? It wasn’t the one supplement I did, or it wasn’t the one therapy, it was I did everything. I changed my whole life. I do have to say it wasn’t just physical, right? It was mental, emotional and spiritual. Those are the things that a lot of people, a lot of patients don’t even consider. They don’t even consider that their thoughts and their attitude, and their unforgiveness, and their stress are really the root cause of their disease, because stress leads us to destructive behavior. Destructive thoughts lead to stress. Stress causes immunosuppression in the body, and it increases inflammation in the body.
I had to get like really honest with myself, and had to start really loving myself, because I secretly hated myself. If you’re really insecure and you secretly hate yourself well, you’re hating your body, right? Your body is going to respond. If you hate it, it’s going to get sick. It’s not going to thrive. That was a problem for me, my body wasn’t thriving. It was like I’m dying at 26. What the heck’s going on? I realized I had a lot of bitterness and resentment in my life, toward people that had hurt me. You know, I was never abused. I had like a great childhood, but we all get hurt by people. We get cheated. We get lied to. People betray our trust. People dump us as friends, or as boyfriends, girlfriends, whatever. Of course, worse things, some people have to live through.
I just realized, man, I’m carrying a lot of unhappiness and negativity. I need to like catch those thoughts when they happen, and change them, right, and choose to think positively about people, and choose to forgive, and not let negativity ruin my life.
Robyn: Which really goes to the whole theme that we talk about here on Your High Vibration Life. We talked a lot in past episodes about how low vibration emotions actually cause our cells to vibrate lower, which makes us really susceptible to cancer. When we vibrate high and strong and clean, generally that’s because not just we ate our big, giant salad with sprouts on it, and we understand that broccoli sprouts are one of the most powerful foods there are, and we use our turmeric, and all of our strategies, but we are also choosing into high vibration emotions. I’ve seen you become a person who is magnetically attracting other high vibration people. You’re so willing to own it. Since I’ve been through your whole cancer course before you’ve released it, I feel like you take people just literally A to Z, and you don’t just leave it at the diet, and the supplements. I think the supplement stuff that you take people through in your cancer course is incredible, because if you start diving into that … because you and I’ve both gone deep into the rabbit hole of studying non-toxic cancer treatment, you even more than me.
I know a lot about non-toxic cancer treatment. I’ve been all over the world for years on my own dime, completely fascinated by it. Of course, of course, I want Chris in my orbit. You go through … “Here’s the supplements that I did in my first stage, and then later, there’s more supplements that you might want to consider.” He’s like a 26-year-old, just out of college, and he’s doing this on a budget. He wasn’t made of money. He wasn’t being bankrolled by millionaire daddy, or whatever. He doesn’t stop at just the food and just the supplements. He also takes you through, in such a compassionate way, Chris shows you what he did and chose to get really real about people who had wronged him, and how that was actually creating part of the climate where cancer was able to get the upper hand. You take people through what they have to do. They have to forgive.
Chris: They have to forgive. I’ll tell you, you know, some of the most powerful health-promoting, healing therapies are free. They’re free. Fasting is free. Forgiveness is free. Exercise is free. Deep breathing is free. Affirmations, you know, like we’re encouraging yourself is free. These are things that don’t cost any money. You don’t have to pay anyone to do them. You don’t have to buy anything.
Even just changing your diet now, I mean, the difference between an organic diet and a standard American diet, I mean, you’re going to spend a little more, but not much, right?
Robyn: Well, because a lot of the things that are cancer-causing are very expensive.
Chris: There are so much research now that is so fantastic on the healthiest cultures around the world. We know, without a doubt, that there are dozens and dozens of countries with much lower cancer rates than the United States. Mexico has half the cancer rates than the United States. If you go to South America, if you go to India, if you go to China, if you go to rural Africa, and Southeast Asia, and the Mediterranean, the cancer rates are way lower, for almost all of the Western cancers …
Robyn: Yeah. Very, very poor countries.
Chris: … colon, breast, prostate, lung. Why are the cancer rates so low in these poor countries? Well, it’s because number one, they’re eating a popper’s diet. They’re eating whole foods from the earth. Very simple, humble diet. What is it? What are they eating? What’s the secret? They’re eating rice, beans, potatoes, lentils, peas, corn. They’re eating starches. I know it’s like people are just like flipping out right now.
Robyn: Oh no, carbohydrates.
Chris: They’re eating a high carbohydrate, high starch diet, lots of fruit. When it’s in season, as much fruit as they can eat, and very little meat or dairy, because meat and dairy, unlike the US where it’s everywhere, if you’re in a poor country, meat and dairy are scarce. They’re scarcities. They’re not subsidized by the government. They’re expensive. Most poor cultures, if you raise livestock, you can’t just go kill a chicken every night for dinner, because you’re going to run out of chickens.
Robyn: You save that little guy underneath your bed in your tiny little hut. I mean, I’ve been to these nations all over the world. You save it for twice a year when some important dignitary comes to town. You don’t have it every night.
Chris: Right. That’s exactly right. If they have a chicken that’s laying eggs, okay, you get a few eggs a week from the chicken or whatever. Yeah, I mean, dairy is very rare. Of course beef is … You know in India, they don’t eat beef at all, because they worship the cow. Most the Indian culture’s vegetarian. They also eat a lot of root vegetables. Of course, carrots and beets, cabbage is fantastic, turnip, stuff like that.
Robyn: Let’s talk really fast. When you said they eat a high carbohydrate, high starch diet. Let’s pause for one quick second, because the diet industry has done a number on your brain. People, the last 15 years, since the current reigning food cult is to vilify carbohydrates … let’s just pause there for a second … they’re not eating Wonder Bread. They’re not eat white rice. When he says starches and carbohydrates, brown rice, wild rice, legumes, these whole foods are the starches and carbonates he’s talking about. Carbohydrates are good food. It’s just when we process them that they’re a problem.
Chris: Absolutely, right. Carbs that are healthy are not potato chips, french fries and Pepsi, and whatever like candy bars and stuff that people eat. No. They’re eating whole foods from the earth, starchy vegetables. Those are wonderful health promoting foods. Those cultures, again, eat very little meat and dairy. Of course, no processed food, no junk food, and tons of plant food.
It has dramatic effect on their health. They had not only low rates of most Western cancers that are dietary cancers like colon cancer, breast cancer, prostate cancer, but also they have super low rates of heart disease, Crohn’s disease, colitis, appendicitis, ulcers, hemorrhoids. I mean, all of these Western diseases, not to mention thyroid disease, which is huge now, and autoimmune disease, many of these diseases are extremely rare in developing countries that haven’t adopted our Western diet and lifestyle.
Now, there are a couple other components I’m going to touch on. One is typically poor people are getting more fresh air, more sunshine, and more exercise, right? Because they’re not driving or riding the subway somewhere, right? They’re working. They’re doing manual labor outside. They’re active. We’re very sedentary. All of these factors, including them having lower stress, because they’re not in this fast-paced, crazy, modern world trying to keep up with the Jones’s. All of those factors together promote health and longevity.
We haven’t even talked about my website. Six years ago, I went public. 2010, I started Chris Beat Cancer. That’s a blog that I just thought, “Well, gosh, it’s been seven years, I’m still here.” People kept asking me like, “What did you … You’re still alive? What did you do? Did you do chemo?” I’m like, “I guess, I should maybe like tell somebody about this, because it seems like important.” I was like, “I don’t know. Maybe I’ll start a blog, whatever that is.”
I just started writing about … sort of documenting what I did, and trying to explain what I did, just for my friends, really, and people I knew on Facebook when it was in its infancy. Then, I started making videos and talking about health and nutrition and things. Then, people started coming out of the wood works saying lie, “Tell me more. Help. Can you help me?” Or “Hey, I healed my cancer, too, in 1980.” I’m like, “What? Can I interview you?”
The site has grown a lot in six years. Last year, I don’t know, two and a half million visitors. I’ve compiled 50 plus interviews now with people who’ve healed cancer like me with nutrition and natural, non-toxic therapy. Some of them refused all treatment. Some of them went through all the treatment and it failed them, and they still got well at stage IV. I mean, there’s just these amazing remarkable stories from just real people. Most of them don’t have books or anything to sell you. They just have this incredible life story and healing story that they want to share with the world.
Robyn: He does fantastic interviews. He really gets people to tell their stories that are not just beautiful and miraculous, but also just the heart of this devastating diagnosis that they receive, and then how they come out on the other side, and they have so much to share. He really did this. He really does this deal. I’ve eaten with him. I’ve been away on conferences. We share tips on how we eat. Chris isn’t as pure now as he was. My grandmother wasn’t either. My grandmother didn’t stay as rigorous as she did in that first two years when she was literally just starving cancer out, right, Chris? I mean-
Chris: Yeah, I know. I’m glad you brought that up, too, because I don’t want people to think I’m a raw foodist. I was 100% raw for 90 days. Then we added 20% cooked food back to my diet, because I just needed more calories. The raw food diet is amazing if you have extra weight to lose, because it’s so low in calories, but it’s rich in nutrition, and so the extra weight will just come off. Like, it’ll just come off really fast.
If you have a super high metabolism, like I did, then you realize really quickly like, “I’m not getting enough calories every day,” so we added cooked food, like I mentioned, lentils, sweet potatoes, brown, black, red rice, quinoa, so some good healthy starches. That made a huge difference. My nutritionist also recommended I add one to two servings of what we call clean meat now, right? Wild caught salmon, or organic lamb were his two recommendations, which I did for a time. I still eat a plant-based diet. It’s about 98% plant-based, so I’m still very, very serious about eating a plant-based diet because of the tremendous health benefits of it.
It’s been 13 years. Yes, I give myself freedom to enjoy something that would be considered not healthy, what I call recreational food. Every once in a while, like take the kids out for ice cream or something. Yeah, just I’ve held myself to a very high standard not just because I’m afraid of a recurrence, because I’m pretty far past that now, but my odds are the same as anybody else’s of getting heart disease or cancer in my 40’s, 50’s, 60’s, 70’s. I don’t want to get those diseases, so that’s why I make the choices I make now.
Robyn: To wrap this up, I want to pull one … sort of might seem strange … point. This gentleman in Alaska. This really struck me, this time I heard your story. This gentleman in Alaska, who sends a young guy in Tennessee he doesn’t know, a book. I just want to point out the impact that our acts of service can have on others.
I think we have opportunities to do service like this and to be a spokesperson for God, or the universe, or however you see it. Either way, God and the universe are up leveling in our high vibration. That guy felt called to share something with you that completely changed your life, and you are now changing millions of lives.
I also want to point out one other thing, and that is how Chris’s emotional response to life changed. He was serious about changing that. He’s a guy now that you just have so much fun talking to. He’s fun. He’s kind. He has stopped doing real estate so that he can be of service to cancer patients, people being diagnosed, millions of people all over the world every year who need the kind of inspiration and hope that he brings to them through other people’s stories, because there are truly thousands and thousands of people who’ve beat cancer the way Chris did. He lives in the high vibration emotions. He’s serious about that.
I have one more. It’s kind of a weird one to end on, Chris, but I actually want to go back tom something you said early on, and have this be your last question. You were talking about how when you were diagnosed, your family said to you … I honestly believe that people, for whom this is all new information, that people beat cancer all the time. Honestly, if you didn’t have the background and weren’t way down the bunny trail like we are. Some people were saying to you, “Don’t you think if the doctors had something better, that they would tell you?” Can you just address that before we end tonight?
Chris: It helps to understand that the cancer industry is basically was created by the pharmaceutical industry. They’re only interested in therapies that … and drugs, obviously, drug therapies, that can be patented and sold for high profits. They ignore all of the amazing nutritional science research on the anticancer compounds that are so incredible anticancer compounds in turmeric, and garlic, and cruciferous vegetables, and berries, and green tea. There’s mounds of research on … You just go to PubMed and type in “Turmeric and cancer, garlic cancer, blueberries cancer, green tea cancer,” and you’ll see all this incredible research, but the problem is you’ve got independent scientists that do the research and they make these amazing discoveries, but then the pharmaceutical industry, basically, they look at it and like, “Okay. Well, we can’t do anything with that because we can’t make any money on blueberries.”
That’s the reason that we don’t find nutrition incorporated into cancer treatment, and that you don’t see any natural compound used in medicine. You realize everything used in medicine is a patented drug, or was a patented drug, and now it’s the generic. I’m not trying to demonize the doctors, the industry, but look, it’s just sort of an industry … a conspiracy of greed, I guess you could say. It’s just capitalism, right? It’s like, “We want to make money, as much money as possible. The only way to make money is through procedures like surgery, treatments like radiation, which is crazy expensive equipment, obviously, and drug therapies.” That’s where the money is. It costs a billion dollars on average for a drug to get approved for use in cancer treatment, to go through phase 3 clinical trials.
I mean, what are you going to do? You’re going to take green tea extract, spend a billion dollars to take it through phase 3 clinical trials? Who is going to do that? Nobody. That’s why you hear doctors say, “Well, we don’t have any evidence that nutrition works, or that that helps.” You’re right, because it’s so freaking expensive to “get human clinical trial evidence.”
When they say we don’t have evidence, it doesn’t mean we tried it and it didn’t work. It means no one is funding this kind of study, because it’s ridiculously expensive. Until a benevolent billionaire comes along, who’s like “Yeah, I’ve got more money I don’t know what to do with.” Let’s do all kinds of nutrition and cancer research studies. I will say this, there is one really awesome study that Dean Ornish did. He took prostate cancer patients that were early stage, and put them on a plant-based diet, and added exercise and stress management, and put them on this program. Within a year, all of their PSA’s had reversed. He proved that a plant-based diet plus exercise and stress management reverse the progression of early-stage prostate cancer. The only reason he got permission to do that was because it was early stage prostate cancer, which is typically slow-growing. If you try to do that same study, and people have, with let’s say, breast cancer, stage II or III, or colon cancer or whatever, they don’t get approval because the argument is well known, they need standard of care first.
Sure, you can try that after they’ve gone through all the surgery, chemo, and radiation that they’re supposed to have. If they’re still alive, and they still have cancer, sure, you can try your nutritional approach and see if it helps. I mean, for those people, a lot of them, it’s just too late. They’re wrecked by all those treatments, right? They’ve been burned on the inside, head to toe, and their immune system’s destroyed, their elimination and detoxification systems and organs are destroyed. Their nervous system is a wreck. You know, they’re just in really bad shape.
The reality is the cancer industry, even the best oncologist in the world … when I say best, I mean the ones that really do care about people and didn’t just go into it because it was a lucrative career … are trapped in a system that pays them really well to do what they do, despite the results. It really doesn’t matter if their patients get well, they’re going to get paid anyway, right? It’s like the famous quote from Molière, “I believe medicine is the best of all trades, because whether you do any good or not, you still get your money.”
Robyn: You know, I am a huge fan of the career of Chris Wark, and you’re just warming up.
Chris: Well, I’m a huge fan of Robyn. I’m so glad we met. It’s just been really fun. You’ve been a really fun friend to have in the health and wellness world. We’re surrounded by a lot of crazy, weird people.
Robyn: You know, I feel really strongly that everyone should have Chris’s 20 Questions for Oncologists. It’s literally the best piece I’ve ever written on cancer. I’ve read way more than my share. Get that at greensmoothiegirl.com/Chris. Chris, my brother, thank you so much for being on my podcast, sharing as you have many, many times on live stages in your own site. Make sure you tune in to Chris Beat Cancer, because he has new stories coming out all the time of people he travels to learn more about their story and share it with us. Thank you.