Grapes and products made from grapes may promote body terrainthe internal conditions of your body, including nutritional status, fitness, blood sugar balance, hormone balance, inflammation and more factors known to be important in cancer, including better blood sugar and insulin levels and less oxidative stressan imbalance between free radicals and antioxidants in your body in which antioxidant levels are lower than normal; this imbalance can cause harmful oxidation reactions in your body chemistry.

How do experts use grapes and grape extracts?

Integrative experts provide recommendations for grapes and grape extracts in treating people with cancer. Learn more about the approaches and meanings of
recommendations ›

Published protocols, programs, and approaches

These protocolsa package of therapies combining and preferably integrating various therapies and practices into a cohesive design for care, programs, and approaches by leaders in integrative cancer care use or recommend grapes or grape extracts.

We do not recommend specific integrative protocols or programs but provide information for you to evaluate with your healthcare team.

Lise Alschuler, ND, FABNO, and Karolyn Gazella

These books describe approaches for certain cancer types, or along with certain conventional therapy treatments, or for particular conditions such as insulin resistancea condition in which cells in your muscles, fat, and liver don’t respond well to insulin and can’t efficiently take up glucose from your blood for energy.

Grapes as food enhance immune function, provide antioxidant action, protect cells, and enhance detoxification.

Keith Block, MD

Block KI. Life over Cancer: The Block Center Program for Integrative Cancer Care. New York: Bantam Dell. 2009.

The integrative Block Program has recommendations to people who are at different places along the cancer continuum:

  • Those who’ve been recently diagnosed
  • Those in treatment
  • Those who’ve concluded treatment and need to remain vigilant to prevent recurrence

Dr. Block’s protocol uses red grapes and purple grape juice for blood circulation/coagulation. Grape seed extract is used for these effects:

  • Improve oxidation and reduce oxidative stress
  • Improve circulation/coagulation (also red wine extract)
  • Reduce radiation enteritisinflammation of the small intestine caused by radiation therapy to the abdomen, pelvis, or rectum
  • Target progression pathways after treatment
  • Target epidermal growth factor receptor (EGFR)

Gerald M. Lemole, MD; Pallav K. Mehta, MD; and Dwight L. McKee, MD

Lemole GM, Mehta PK, McKee DL. After Cancer Care: The Definitive Self-Care Guide to Getting and Staying Well for Patients with Cancer. New York, New York: Rodale, Inc. 2015.

These doctors present easy-to-incorporate lifestyle changes to help you “turn on” hundreds of genes that fight cancer, and “turn off” the ones that encourage cancer, while recommending lifestyle approaches to address each type.

Grapes or grape extracts are used in protocols for these cancer types:

  • Breast cancer
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Prostate cancer
  • Leukemia

Neil McKinney, BSc, ND

McKinney N. Naturopathic Oncology, Fourth Edition. Victoria, BC, Canada: Liaison Press. 2020.

This book includes descriptions and uses of many natural and complementary protocols for cancer in general and for specific cancers. It also includes information on integrative support during conventional cancer treatment.

Grapes are a source of boron—linked to lower risk of lung cancer in adequate amounts—and are rich in ellagic acid and salvestrols—plant antifungals that are “pro-drugs” that become toxic in cancer cells. Grapes also support mitochondrial recovery and help eliminate carcinogens from fungal toxins.

Uses of grapes:

  • Cancer prevention
  • Breast cancer
  • Stomach cancer
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Skin cancer

Uses of grape seed extract for anticancer effects:

  • Inhibit angiogenesisformation of blood vessels
  • Inhibit tumor invasion
  • Support p53 activity in cancer prevention
  • Suppress estrogen biosynthesis (hormone blockade)
  • Supportive to intravenous vitamin C therapy

Uses of grape seed extract for body terrain support:

  • Anti-inflammatory
  • Antiviral
  • Increase natural killer cell activity
  • Antioxidant protection for damage from radiation devices, such as scans

Uses of grape seed extract for managing symptoms and side effects:

  • Treat pulmonary fibrosis from radiation therapy
  • Treat skin with radiation dermatitis (topical oil)
  • Reduce nerve injury
  • With conventional cancer treatments:
    • Anastrozole and letrozole
    • Reduce toxicity from cyclophosphamide
    • With doxorubicin to reduce myocardial oxidative stress, reduce toxicity, and improve effectiveness
    • Manage joint pains from letrozole
  • Use with acetyl-L-carnitine for “chemo brain”
  • Treat cachexiaweakness and wasting of the body due to severe chronic illness
  • Treat hot flashes
  • Slow bone breakdown in bone metastases

Grape extracts are incompatible with N-acetyl-cysteine.

Used with these cancer types:

  • Breast 
  • Bladder
  • Brain and nerve 
  • Carcinoid (GI neuroendocrine)
  • Cervical
  • Colorectal
  • Esophageal
  • Kidney
  • Leukemia (AML)
  • Liver and gallbladder
  • Lung
  • Lymphoma
  • Mesothelioma
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Myelodysplastic syndrome
  • Nasopharyngeal, head and neck 
  • Ovarian
  • Prostate
  • Sarcoma
  • Skin (non-melanoma)
  • Stomach
  • Uterine

Nasha Winters ND, FABNO, LAc, DiplOM, and Jess Higgins Kelley, MNT

Winters ND, Kelley JH. The Metabolic Approach to Cancer. 2017. Chelsea Green Publishing.

This book’s metabolic approach to cancer is a “naturopathic nutrition program that uses the medicinal powers of traditional foods, therapeutic diets and non-toxic lifestyle approaches as cancer counteragents and preventives.“ The program focuses on 10 terrain elements and how to assess them and bring them into balance.

Red grapes are listed as a top food for inhibiting angiogenesis and metastasis. This book lists red grapes as a source of resveratrol, which activates adaptive stress response signaling pathways. See Resveratrol ›


Dosage has not been standardized for use in cancer care, but recommendations are available from this source:

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Grape Professional Monograph ›

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General information about dosing

Find general dosing guidelines regarding natural products and supplements in Dosing Guidelines ›

Keep reading about grapes and grape extracts


Nancy Hepp, MS

Lead Researcher
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Ms. Hepp is a researcher and communicator who has been writing and editing educational content on varied health topics for more than 20 years. She serves as lead researcher and writer for CancerChoices and also served as the first program manager. Her graduate work in research and cognitive psychology, her master’s degree in instructional design, and her certificate in web design have all guided her in writing and presenting information for a wide variety of audiences and uses. Nancy’s service as faculty development coordinator in the Department of Family Medicine at Wright State University also provided experience in medical research, plus insights into medical education and medical care from the professional’s perspective.

Nancy Hepp, MS Lead Researcher


Andrew Jackson, ND

Research Associate
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Andrew Jackson, ND, serves as a CancerChoices research associate. As a naturopathic physician practicing in Kirkland, Washington, he teaches critical evaluation of the medical literture at Bastyr University in Kenmore, Washington. His great appreciation of scientific inquiry and the scientific process has led him to view research with a critical eye.

Andrew Jackson, ND Research Associate

Last update: June 3, 2024

Last full literature review: February 2024

CancerChoices provides information about integrative in cancer care, a patient-centered approach combining the best of conventional care, self care and evidence-informed complementary care in an integrated plan cancer care. We review complementaryin cancer care, complementary care involves the use of therapies intended to enhance or add to standard conventional treatments; examples include supplements, mind-body approaches such as yoga or psychosocial therapy, and acupuncture therapies and self-care lifestyle actions and behaviors that may impact cancer outcomes; examples include eating health-promoting foods, limiting alcohol, increasing physical activity, and managing stress practices to help patients and professionals explore and integrate the best combination of conventionalthe cancer care offered by conventionally trained physicians and most hospitals; examples are chemotherapy, surgery, and radiotherapy and complementary therapies and practices for each person.

Our staff have no financial conflicts of interest to declare. We receive no funds from any manufacturers or retailers gaining financial profit by promoting or discouraging therapies mentioned on this site.

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