It's predicated on the doubling time, and since I'm not an oncologist (or a doctor), assuming it is correct, it does indicate that exposure to carcinogens at an early age led to very early cancer.
This early cancer was "delayed" by his healthy lifestyle.
By the time they found the cancer, 9 months delay of surgery is nothing (again, assuming the doubling time theory is valid).
No doubt despite the healthy diet, in my opinion STRESS was the main killer (carcinogens being the seed, since others were exposed as well, genetics and so on as well, but there is a strong argument about stress causing issues) - even Steve suspected this, he talks about how he had to shuttle between Pixar and Next/Apple and that was a big source of stress, possibly because he had to really divide his time and also travel himself, he never seemed to have a driver to take him around.
So... McDougall's argument is sound, provided the doubling time theory is legitimate - as a Biology major it sounds a bit too straightforward to be exactly like that because the growth rate is not constant throughout your life but obviously doctors and oncologists understand the approximation that McDougall is arguing for.
In the end... it is about the human price we pay for success.
Clearly his major surgery messed him about more than if he didn't do it and that pretty much wrapped up his life and led to a very painful death.
With chemotherapy and so on, I wonder if one day I will refuse such treatment if I get cancer (or if it is already brewing in me).
But diet is probably one of the biggest factors in healthy living, besides attitude and stress management.
I've lost almost 10kg, good weight loss, in the past year or so, eating organic at home, and much less meat, less refined sugar, less refined carbohydates, etc. and it's well... improved my life a lot.
Australia is also a much healthier place (if you want to be healthier) compared to most modern Asian cities - stressful, chaotic, polluted, food very much rich in oil, meat, etc, as they become "Westernised", less fresh vegetables because of disconnect with traditional farming and new "modern" lifestyles etc.
May the Divine Bless You, Steve, wherever you are.
Originally Posted by Tallest Skil
I liked his premise (I read your spoiler), but he's just doing "simple math" by his own admission. I know nothing about oncology, but isn't it possible that these things grow exponentially or logarithmically? He didn't cover that. He just said "well, it doubled from this time to this time, so it must have been doubling from the start.
Not to say that isn't wrong! Again, I don't know the particulars myself; I just found it odd that he wouldn't have gone to an oncologist and asked about how these things grow.
Again, talking about time taken, he says "no one who really knows how this works would have said [he was a fool for waiting the nine months, as that is what killed him], and I just showed you that (going back to his math earlier)". I would have loved to see some third party evidence of this here.
But he makes some VERY good points, regardless.
Yes, if it doubles every x time period then that ~is~ exponential as it is a geometric progression as per how biological growth happens when you are talking about cell growth in most cases because the cell splits (mitosis) to grow.
In fact come to think of it, indeed, most life on Earth grows by increase in cells (single or multi-celled organisms) rather than the cell getting bigger.
Back to your point, indeed, any rational thinker will think that the main assumption here is that the x time period between doubling is "constant".
Of course, I think McDougall and oncologists using that "calculator" probably have more sophisticated tools but yes, the data points are slim because you're only using two points in time (2003 or so and 2011 when Steve died).
But like I said if looked at carefully by doctors and oncologists if the time approximation is reasonable then McDougall has a good case about the cancer being contracted very early on in life.
Qualitatively it does appear that a lot of people that get various forms of cancer, if they don't live, they go pretty fast... usually a period of months, or at most a few years. 2004 to 2011, seven years, is a pretty unusual stretch. They say because it was a "benign" cancer but the question is, was it benign because it was benign or because Steve's body/diet/etc. kept it "benign" to that level of slow growth.
Certainly it would be interesting to see what the oncologists come up with. But since McDougall is an MD usually MDs can make such determinations by their own research, doctors are trained to do so.
But yeah if the "big guns" of cancer come out and agree or provide corroborating evidence then case closed, Steve had cancer very early on.Edited by sr2012 - 12/24/12 at 10:41am