Stage 4 Melanoma Survivor, Coley’s Toxins, Gerson Therapy | Bailey O’Brien

In 2011 Bailey was diagnosed with stage 4 inoperable melanoma and was told she had just a few months to live. Bailey didn’t agree. After researching alternative options she radically changed her diet and jumped on a plane to Mexico for treatment and never looked back.

8 years later Bailey is cancer-free and is now helping others through their integrative cancer journeys.

Bailey is an Integrative Nutrition Health Coach and a Certified Square One Cancer Coach. Her focus is on diet and lifestyle as the foundation to health and healing.

***Resources Mentioned***


In This Episode:

Bailey shares her incredible cancer journey starting from when she was first diagnosed with melanoma as a teenager to its recurrence 3 years later. In 2011, after multiple surgeries she was given the devastating news that her cancer was inoperable and she didn’t qualify for the latest new drug. Bailey felt hopeless. But with the help of friends and family she radically turned her life and health around and now inspire others with her amazing healing story. 

Have you always been holistically inclined? 

  • Studying dietetics as an undergrad
  • Didn’t agree with what being taught in nutrition classes
  • When working in conventional medicine, nutrition is secondary to pharmaceutical drugs
  • Believe in the power of nutrition as medicine
  • When healing from cancer food was the medicine

Is there a difference between what is learned to become a registered dietitian working as part of the conventional system compared to what we learn through ‘alternative’ channels like this?

  • Nutritionists and dieticians have mostly the right ideas
  • There are benefits of having first hand experience of healing through food 
  • Conventional system can help with acute things like diabetes
  • Problems arise when the conventional system considers something ‘incurable’

What led to your diagnosis?

  • Was studying away from home 
  • Fearful of the world and doing things on my own. Didn’t feel like I fit in
  • Very stressed and didn’t know how to deal with it. Started overeating
  • Sailing camp counselor – got a lot of sun exposure and sun burns
  • Used lots of toxic body products 

After all your research, what’s your advice on sun exposure?

  • Sensible exposure – don’t get burnt, if you’re pale, be careful
  • Recommend non-nano zinc or titanium dioxide (although toxicity of titanium dioxide has come into question)
  • Recommends Badger Sunscreen
  • Regular sunscreen is full of toxic chemicals and can be more harmful than not wearing anything
  • Titanium Dioxide provides a physical barrier between sun and skin. The size of the particulars are important. Nanoparticles are small enough to get into the bloodstream. Look for non-nano sunscreen

Back to diagnosis…

  • Found a weird looking spot
  • Biopsy showed it was highly suspicious for a melanoma
  • DIdn’t know anything about cancer, just knew it was serious
  • Had surgery to remove legion and a tracer was injected to see where melanoma had spread
  • Tracer showed cancer had spread to lymph node near ear
  • More surgery, removed 45 lymph nodes from neck and parotid gland. Nodes removed were not positive
  • Given two options – do nothing or Interferon treatments (an older form of immunotherapy)
  • Opted for Interferon to help prevent a recurrence. Wasn’t doing anything else to support body in terms of diet and lifestyle
  • 2 years later melanoma returned 
  • Two more 2 surgeries to remove tumors plus a round of radiation treatment 
  • Found another lump under chin that was melanoma
  • Scan showed another 5 lesions in neck lung and spine that were suspicious 
  • Oncologist recommended Temodar (chemotherapy pill) and PABA (b-vitamin)
  • Was told cancer was very aggressive and had only months to live
  • Started looking at alternative treatments 

Where did you start?

  • Took some supplements and did one round of Temodar and PABA
  • Tumor started to shrink
  • Went to CHIPSA in Mexico and started the Gerson Therapy, Coley’s Toxins, B17 injections and IV Vitamin C
  • When left Mexico lump had disappeared from under chin
  • Before went to Mexico saw an integrative oncologist / naturopathic doctor who prescribed modified citrus pectin, resveratrol, green tea extract and glutamine powder during radiation. 
    • Recommended high protein diet organic diet with no sugar. Not the perfect diet but heading in the right direction
  • Gerson therapy
    • Lots of juicing, vegetables and carbohydrates
    • Cancer result of nutrient deficiency and toxins in the body
    • Coffee enemas to detox
    • Potassium powder 
  • Self vs non-self immune system model
  • Danger model – immune system doesn’t respond to things that are foriegn but rather to things that look dangerous such as surgery or infections 
    • Cancer cells can have a ‘cloaking’ effect to ‘hide’ from the immune system
    • Damage a cancer cell through chemo the immune system can recognise it and respond
  • Preserve your immune system through low dose chemo not high
    • Immunotherapy can also help with stubborn tumors
  • Coley’s Toxins
    • Mixture of two different bacteria injected intravenously, subcutaneously or intratumorally 
    • To stimulate an immune response in the body that attacks the cancer
    • Often people who go into spontaneous remission have had an infection
  • Came home from Mexico and continued protocol:
    • Coley’s Toxin – 3 injections per week
    • Coffee enemas – 3 per day
    • Juices – 13 a day with iodine and potassium supplements
    • B vitamins – intramuscular injections once a week
  • 2 months after Mexico went for scan – no sign of active disease

Did your Oncologist seem to believe in the alternative treatment?

  • Oncologist was so emotionless. Said “whatever you’re doing seems to be working so keep it up”

How do you guide others going through an integrative cancer journey?

  • Do your own research
  • There are somethings that people must do – diet, lifestyle and managing stress are the most important 
  • Often people stop too soon. 18 months to 2 years minimum
  • Recommends using prayer for guidance and healing

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