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Natural Treatment for Pancreatic Cysts

Natural Treatment for Pancreatic Cysts

Are there natural treatments for pancreatic cysts? It may be surprising, but there are things you can do at home to prevent and treat pancreatic cysts. However, before self-treating, it is important to talk to your doctor to see if you are at risk or already have pancreatic cysts. If you are already undergoing treatment for pancreatic cysts, do not replace it with these natural treatments without your doctor’s approval.

What are pancreatic cysts?

Firstly, before we can discuss the treatment of pancreatic cysts, we should discuss what they are. A cyst is a pocket-like growth that contains fluid. In the pancreas, different types of cysts can occur. Two common types of pancreatic cysts are mucinous or serous cystadenoma. Serous cystadenoma contains thin, clear fluid and usually considered non-cancerous. On the other hand, mucinous cystadenoma contains mucus and is potentially cancerous.

Pseudocysts are another condition that can be mistaken for actual cysts. These also have fluid, but do not have the same epithelial lining as serous or mucinous cystadenoma. Pseudocysts are not considered harmful, however, and are usually due to pancreatitis.

Natural treatment options for pancreatic cysts

While pancreatic cysts usually do not require much treatment, large cysts may cause pain and discomfort. Although uncommon, some cysts can transition into cancer. Typically, treatment involves surveillance of the cyst and if indicated, surgical removal of the cyst.

Aside from watching and waiting, natural treatment options for pancreatic cysts include watching your diet and maintaining general health. Like with most diseases, including cancer, proper diet and exercise can improve vitality and boost your immune system.

The exact cause of pancreatic cysts is not known, but conditions like pancreatitis can be associated with cyst formation. A low-fat diet, ideally less than 50 grams per day, is best for patients with pancreatic diseases. Smaller, more frequent meals are preferred than large, heavy meals. Also try to include fat-soluble vitamin supplements or eat more food that contains vitamins A, D, E, and K. Some food that are rich in these vitamins are:

  • Carrots, sweet potatoes (kamote), squash (kalabasa)
  • Mangoes
  • Broccoli
  • Cabbage
  • Spinach, kangkong, petchay
  • Liver
  • Whole eggs
  • Fatty fish (e.g. salmon, mackerel, sardines)
  • Seafood (e.g. shrimp)
  • Nuts
  • Fortified milk
  • Whole-grain bread and cereal

Avoid alcohol and always stay hydrated. Too much alcohol can damage the liver and pancreas, leading to inflammation and decreased function.

Natural Treatment for Pancreatic Cysts

Key Takeaways

In conclusion, pancreatic cysts are usually nothing to worry about. Maintaining a healthy diet and lifestyle is sufficient unless the cyst continues to grow. If you experience abdominal pain, make an appointment with your doctor to determine if the cause is a cyst. You may be asked to undergo imaging tests like an MRI, CT scan, or ultrasound. Pancreatic cysts cannot be treated without surgery, but staying healthy can ease the discomforts of their symptoms.

Learn more about Digestive Health here.

Hello Health Group does not provide medical advice, diagnosis or treatment.

Sources

Pancreatic cysts, https://www.mayoclinic.org/diseases-conditions/pancreatic-cysts/diagnosis-treatment/drc-20375997, Accessed December 19, 2020.

Pancreatic cysts, https://pancreasfoundation.org/patient-information/ailments-pancreas/pancreatic-cysts/, Accessed December 19, 2020.

Types of pancreatic cysts, https://jamanetwork.com/journals/jama/fullarticle/2553450, Accessed December 19, 2020.

Pancreatic cysts, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/books/NBK525979/, Accessed December 19, 2020.

Should I be worried about pancreatic cysts? https://www.health.harvard.edu/diseases-and-conditions/should-i-be-worried-about-a-pancreatic-cyst, Accessed December 19, 2020

Nutrition advice and recipes, https://pancreasfoundation.org/patient-information/nutrition-advice-recipes/, Accessed December 19, 2020.

Chinese Herbal Medicines Attenuate Acute Pancreatitis: Pharmacological Activities and Mechanisms, https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC5403892/, Accessed December 19, 2020.

The best foods for vitamins and minerals, https://www.health.harvard.edu/staying-healthy/the-best-foods-for-vitamins-and-minerals, Accessed December 19, 2020.

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Written by Stephanie Nicole Nera, RPh, PharmD Updated Jun 25
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