June 2021 SIO Newswire

From the President

In this newswire:

Dear SIO Members and Friends,

As spring turns to summer (despite one of the coldest Memorial Day weekends in US history), I am encouraged to see pandemic restrictions being lifted in many places. The data on the effectiveness of the COVID-19 vaccines to prevent infection, reduce severity of disease, and limit transmission gives me optimism.

Our choice to have a hybrid conference this year means we can take advantage of the beautiful Baltimore Harbor location and once again see each other in person after almost two years. As the state of Maryland and the city of Baltimore lift pandemic restrictions, the hotel is also able to increase the number of conference attendees permitted at events like ours. Our staff is working with the Baltimore Renaissance Harborplace Hotel to make this a great event. The virtual conference experience will also be rich with workshops, international content, and live-streamed programming. Early Bird registration is open now, and information on scholarships is coming soon.

SIO’s popular Wellness Wednesday series will return this summer with two webinars per month from June through August. This programming represents countless hours of work from Leigh Leibel, MSc, C-IAYT, Co-Chair of the Yoga SIG, for which we express our appreciation. Each Wellness Wednesday will include a free, live, one-hour informal lunch conversation with cancer subject matter experts who will illuminate the challenges faced by people touched by cancer, particularly those in underrepresented communities. A  companion 20-minute mind-body wellness video will be released with each  episode and uploaded to SIO’s YouTube channel. Our goal is to highlight the benefits of integrative medicine in the context of equitable cancer care.

Our first Wellness Wednesday episode, a special 90-minute presentation in recognition of National Black Family Cancer Prevention Week (#BlackFamCan), will air June 16, 2021 from 12-1:30pm ET. Please stay tuned for an email announcing this wellness series and the registration information for Black Family Cancer Prevention: Engaging the Generations to End Health Disparities. 

Don’t miss the latest Integrative Oncology Talk podcast episode, Embedding Whole Person Care into Cancer Care, now available for viewing on the SIO YouTube channel. In this episode, host Santosh Rao, MD, ABOIM and co-host Judith Lacey, MBBS, FRACGP interview Eduardo Bruera, MD, FAAHPM, a world leader in person-centered cancer care, to explore lessons and strategies to embed delivery of integrative oncology into cancer care systems.

Congratulations to SIO international members from Italy and Israel on an important open access publication. The newly launched Journal of Cancer Rehabilitation has released a special issue on integrative oncology which presents SIO’s leading role in the international field of evidence-based integrative oncology. This special issue is edited by SIO members Vittorio Gebbia, MD, PhD, and Stefano Magno, MD, and their colleagues in Italy. The preface and editorial have been written by Eran Ben-Arye, MD, Co-Chair of the SIO Global Task Force, and his colleague, Noah Samuels, MD. The preface introduces readers to SIO’s definition of “integrative oncology” and our society’s joint effort with ASCO in developing evidence-informed clinical practice guidelines. The editorial discusses a framework for translating these guidelines into practice in European countries through a call to “a new vision of oncology in which therapeutic innovations and research need to be inserted into an algorithm that sees the patient at the center and not his disease.” I wish to thank the authors for their dedication to the work of improving the lives of people with cancer throughout the world.


Ting Bao, MD, DABMA, MS

SIO 2021 Conference

The Science of Living Well with Cancer


Friday, September 24 through Sunday, September 26, 2021

Learn more about the upcoming conference here!

Click HERE to register online

Herb of the Month

The last two decades have seen a significant increase in dietary supplement use by cancer patients. Despite the proliferation of Web sites that contain information about dietary supplements, finding a reliable source can be overwhelming. The Integrative Medicine Service at Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center developed and maintains a free Web site “About Herbs” ( that provides objective and unbiased information about herbs, vitamins, minerals and other dietary supplements, and unproven anticancer treatments.  Each of the 286 and growing number of entries has healthcare professional and patient versions that are regularly updated with the latest research findings. The free About Herbs App, compatible with iPad, iPhone, and iPod Touch devices, can be downloaded at
Omega-3 fatty acids are essential for a wide range of physiological functions including cell growth and muscle activity. Dietary sources include fatty fish, some plants and nut oils. Omega-3s are also marketed as supplements to decrease inflammation, improve cardiovascular health, and to manage depression.
Available evidence suggests that omega-3s obtained through diet can have health benefits by lowering inflammation and triglyceride levels. But conclusive findings to support use of supplements for preventing and treating cardiovascular disease or cancer are lacking … link to monograph.

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SIO welcomes your support of our Society, which helps us develop projects and educational programs to realize our mission of advancing evidence-based, comprehensive, integrative healthcare to improve the lives of people affected by cancer.
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