What to eat for Nutrition and Cancer Prevention – Prevention and treatment of cancer via food.
‘ Let thy food be thy medicine, let thy medicine be thy food‘ Hippocrates.
This article is written because we care about your health and those of your loved ones; especially if you are a cancer patient. First of all, know that cancer is just like any other disease and is not a fatality. Good knowledge about what to eat during cancer treatment can go a long way in alleviating your pains and providing a lasting therapeutic solution. Also, a good knowledge of healthy eating habits that can help in preventing cancer, don’t they say; ‘ prevention is better than cure’?. However, there are no universal recipe-in terms of food intake- for people suffering from cancer. Their nutritional requirements vary from individual to individual. Therefore, talking to your doctor or dietitian is still necessary. This review will serve simply as a guide.
Organic and functional food.
Before we review the eating habits that can help us in preventing cancer or treating cancer, we need to understand what functional and organic foods are.
FUFOSE (Functional Food Science in Europe) worked out a definition of functional food-also known as nutraceuticals or medifood or vita food- like food that satisfactorily demonstrated to affect beneficially one or more target function in the body, beyond adequate nutritional effects, in a way that is relevant to either an improved state of health and wellbeing and/or reduction of risk of diseases.
According to the American Dietetic Association (ADA), Functional Food is a food potentially healthful or food ingredient that may provide a health benefit beyond the traditional nutrients contain. But the ADA added that, for the effect of functional full to be effective, ‘it should be consumed as part of a varied diet on a regular basis’.
Functional foods include foods or food ingredients that exert a beneficial effect on human health and/or reduce the risk of chronic diseases beyond basic nutritional functions (Huggett and Schliter, 1996).
Organic foods are produced without synthetic (man-made) fertilizers and pesticides, growth hormones, antibiotics, and genetically modified organisms (GMOs). The food grown in such conditions has the certification of a recognized governing body. These are some general characteristics of organic foods:
Some studies show that organically produced vegetables and fruit may be:
• Phosphorous, iron, magnesium
• Vitamin C
• Phytochemicals (anthocyanins, flavonoids, carotenoids- natural plant compounds that may have health benefits)
We have to note that organic or functional foods are better in fighting cancer than their conventional counterparts. Organic contains more flavonoids and antioxidants. Synthetic herbicides, pesticides, and fertilizers can contribute to the risk of cancer.
Part A. Cancer prevention via food
According to Sun, Dep 25, 2011. London (Reuters), Cancer diagnosed worldwide are expected to increase by 45% in the next 20 years. This raises a cause of concern, mostly when we know that this disease is preventable by some simple eating habits. Eat healthily can just be alternative medicine in the prevention of cancer. A knowledgeable specialist demonstrated this abundantly in the book Foods That Fight Cancer: Preventing Cancer through Diet. The book is available on Amazon at the cost of $44.99. ( FOODS THAT FIGHT CANCER)
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The author of this book understands the relationship between the chemistry of food cancer. the text of the book is highly readable and explanations are illustrated with clear pictures. The public opinion about food and cancer is often confusing, the help of a specialist is more than imperative for those who want to get at the core of the matter. In Foods That Fight Cancer, leading biochemist Richard Béliveau teams up with Denis Gingras to describe the science of food and which properties of particular foods are the active cancer-fighting elements. They deftly explain how different foods work to protect the body against different cancers and show which foods will be most effective. By understanding the science behind these therapeutic benefits, we come to realize not only why it is so critical to add these foods to our diet, but how easily it can be done.
Cancer proceeds from a disorderly multiplication of somebody’s cells. Good eating habits can create an environment that is inhospitable for cancer in our bodies. This is so because the food we eat communicates with our genes. “For better or for worse, everything in our human environment, from the foods we eat to the air we breathe, to the songs we sing (think stress, or the lack thereof) affects our genes, playing a role in how long we live.” Rebecca Katz.
First of all, any food that exposes you to overweight and obesity, exposes you to cancer. Below is the list of some cancer that can proceed from obesity and/or overweight:
- Esophageal cancer
- Liver cancer
- Stomach cancer
- Advanced prostate cancer
- Post-menopausal cancer
- Gallbladder cancer
- Ovarian cancer
Fat can cause cancer because of the following reasons:
- Fat tissue produces estrogen which promotes cell multiplication.
- Fat cells produce hormones, called adipokines, which cause low-grade inflammation.
- Increased level of insulin and insulin-like growth factor-1 (IGF-1)
- Some obese people have chronic low-level inflammation, which has been linked with increased cancer risk.
Foods that can promote cancer
Sugar and Refined Carbohydrates
Foods such as white bread, white rice, pasta, chips, candy, high fructose corn syrup, etc. promote inflammation. And inflammation is a close cause of cancer.
-Limit consumption of red meat (beef, pork, and lamb) to no more than 11-18 ounces per week
-Eat lean cuts – choose loin and round
– Avoid grilling, charring or frying
Examples of processed meat to be avoided include Sausage, Hot Dogs, and Luncheon meats.
Alcohol consumption exposes women to breast cancer. This should be an acceptable limit if alcohol has to be consumed:
- – Servings are 12 ounces beer, 5 ounces wine and 1.5 ounces spirits
- – 2 drinks per day for men
- – 1 drink per day for women
Eating habits that can hinder the development of cancer.
Foods with a high insulin level most are avoided because they promote cell growth. A diabetic condition can also expose us to cancer and consequently, we must aim to be as lean as possible without being underweight.
Avoid weight gain is important, mainly weight gain at the level of waist for adults. Wholefood plant-based diet is the kind of food that we need to privilege if we want to avoid cancer. Our food must have 4 essential components: Fruits, Whole grains, Vegetables, and Protein.
Below is an example of the best plant-based fruits, ideal for cancer prevention, what should be the Nw American food.
- Whole grains
- Raw and Cooked Vegetables
- Fresh and dried fruits
- Nuts and seeds
- Moderate meat
- Olive oil
- Moderate wine
The Mediterranean pyramid food below can also serve us as a guide for healthy eating habits.
Women who adopt a Mediterranean eating habit can decrease their likelihood to develop breast cancer. Men who take at least two plates of vegetables weekly are less likely to develop prostate cancer. Broccoli and cauliflower appeared to have the biggest impact.
Some general rules for healthy eating.
Overall, you have to increase your fruits and vegetable intake. Diets high in vegetables and fruits (400 g/d) may prevent at least 20% of all cancers (Kari Natwick, RDN, LD. Don’t eat anything your great grandmother will not recognize as food, don’t eat it if it came from your car window; don’t it if it is made from the natural, prefer to eat the natural.
The functional version of vegetable and foods are better than the conventional counterpart because they are reinforced with some nutrients that can reduce cancer risk in a more efficient manner. You can get functional foods here:
Review on the cancer-preventive potential of Specific foods
Fruits: Berries and Cherries
– Powerful antioxidants that protect cells from damage by free radicals.
-Damaged cells that are not neutralized by antioxidants can replicate and begin the cancer process. -In berries, anthocyanins affect how genes and molecular pathways are triggered in our bodies.
-Elegiac acid – an anti-cancer compound
Vegetables: Cruciferous vegetables
These include Arugula, Broccoli, Brussels sprouts, Cabbage, Cauliflower, Collard greens, Horseradish, Kale, Kohlrabi, Mustard greens, Radishes, Rutabaga, Turnips, Turnip greens, and watercress.
Cateronoids rich foods.
Cateronoids are also powerful anti-oxidants.
This is a list of some cateronoid rich food:
Yams, Squash and Sweet Potatoes, Bok Choy, Broccoli, Carrots, Corn, Greens, Pumpkin, Bell pepper, Tomatoes, Apricots, Cantaloupe, Nectarines, Peaches, Oranges, Papayas, Watermelon.
Preventive and therapeutic advantage and garlic:
– Reduction in stomach cancer in high-risk people
– May lower incidence of breast, colon, skin, and lung cancer.
List of herbs that can lower the risk of cancer:
Basil, caraway, cardamom, cinnamon, clove, coriander, cumin, garlic, ginger, rosemary, saffron, thyme, and turmeric.
The most recommended fish include:
- Seal Oil,
- Albacore tuna
- Rainbow trout
Part B. Cancer treatment via food.
First of all
In order to stand the negative effects of cancer, you need special nutrients. The conventional treatment of cancer includes chemotherapy, surgery radiation therapy, or a combination of the three. We are here to investigate an alternative treatment of cancer: Food therapy for cancer. This alternative therapy insists on the natural treatment of cancer.
We believe that our organism is built with a self-healing power ( Our Immune System). If our Immune system is appropriately fueled with the Right food, we can eliminate all manners of diseases and sicknesses. That is why we put so much importance on the natural process of healing via Food. We think that Chinese people have discovered some very important secrets of natural healing. They use special natural food to boost the immune system of the body which is empowered to heal himself from almost all diseases ( including cancer).
It is intended to inform you and empower you in your fight against cancer with the aid of your diet. Just by accessing the secrets, 70% of your fears will be wiped away.
Below are some simple rules you can observe in order to start you can cancer treatment.
- 1. Have a Positive Mental attitude.
Your mental attitude goes a long way in preparing your body or not to receive treatment. Miracles take place only when people have faith. Having a positive mental attitude here is to focus on your healing and not on your sickness. You have to see yourself heal and keep thoughts and words favorable to your healing.
- 2. Buy foods you delight eating in your freezer, you don’t have to bother going to shop often.
- 3. Request help from your loved ones about shopping for you whenever you are in need.
With this condition, you need foods with calories and protein more than any other food. With a diet rich with these nutrients, you will cope well with the condition. The fluid is better in between meals, and preferably fluids rich in calories and protein.
You need to have high hygiene of life. Always wash your ditches well, drink clean water always, and cook your meat well. Maintain some level of physical activity, at least do some walking at least twice a week. This might help in maintaining some muscle mass.
Managing your eating habits.
These are some rules you can follow in order to manage your eating habits.
- a. Maintaining your appetite
In order to maintain your appetite, you can do the following:
- Make eating time enjoyable; by eating with friends for instance, by watching your best TV show or by playing music.
- Eat small quantities of a meal at a regular period. You can eat 5-6 times per day small portions of meals instead of eating large portions of meals 3 times per day.
- Take only small quantities of fluids during mealtime.
- Keep snacks close to you so that you can take them at any time when the need arises. Those snacks include biscuits, chocolates, etc.
b. Managing constipation
- Fix your eating times during the day.
- Consume fiber-rich foods such as wholegrain foods, vegetables, fruits, beans, and lentils. The functional version of these foods is preferable because it is reinforced or enhance with special nutrients that can reduce the development of cancer. You can some functional foods for cancer treatment here wholegrain foods, vegetables, fruits, beans, and lentils.
- Drink at least 8 cups of fluid daily.
- Maintain some level of regular light exercise
- Avoid overeating
- Take fluid in-between meals
- Chew food thoroughly
- Avoid foods that tend to favor gas formation such as soft drinks, lactose-containing dairy products.
d. Managing Diarrhea
- Eat small and frequently during the day.
- Avoid high-fiber, high‐fat (greasy/ fried), spicy, or very sweet foods.
- Limit sugar-free gum and candies with sorbitol.
- Inform your doctor if a diarrhea condition arises.
e. Managing Nausea
- Eating snacks will help in controlling nausea.
- Drink clear fluids like barley water, ginger tea and clear soups between meals
- Take the small level of salty foods such as sour plum
- Take anti-vomiting or anti-nausea medicament. Ask advice from your doctor.
f. Managing dry mouth
– Avoid taking beer and wine
– Sip fluid throughout the day.
– Take food with a high level of moisture.
– Take foods that are easy to swallow such as steamed dishes, porridge, yogurt, mashed potatoes, etc.
– wholegrain foods, vegetables, fruits, beans, and lentils
-Consult your doctor in case of persistent symptoms.
g. Managing your weight loss
Weight loss occurs frequently in cancer patients. Weight loss can even be an early symptom of the presence of cancer; this can lead to a condition called cancer cachexia-which can reduce response to therapy- if nothing is done. That is why it is necessary to eat constantly even if it is only a small portion of meals or snacks. The meal must be rich in protein and calories; theses have the potential to reverse the condition. Reinforced foods are advisable. This is where you can get some reinforced foods specially prepared for cancer patients: wholegrain foods, vegetables, fruits, beans, and lentils. You can also use oral nutritional supplements ( example of Eicosapentaenoic acid (EPA) and omega‐3 fatty acid) to help boost your calorie and nutrient intake. In case of persistence of weight loss, consult your doctor.
Diet after Cancer Treatment
After the treatment of cancer, your taste and smell might change and get rid of this problem may last long. If cancer affected one organ in your digestive system, the problem might last for life.
The general rule of diet after cancer treatment is eating a balanced and varied diet. You have to return to normal. Cancer may re-occur if your diet is not balanced. Again the consumption of wholegrain foods, vegetables, fruits, beans, and lentils is advisable. In addition, foods contain protein such as fish, lean meat, bean products (e.g. tofu), and dairy products (e.g. low-fat milk).
Your drinking habits also need to change. You must choose to drink water over sweetened drinks to help in weight management. The types of oils you must use include: canola, soy, sunflower, and peanut oils) in moderate amounts.
Overall, you must eat well and make food your medicine. The services of a dietitian might be helpful.
Can Cancer be beating just by Food?
We cannot confirm that in all cases, food will be the only alternative therapy to cancer treatment. Food can be used in conjunction with other known methods of Cancer treatment. In some cases, Cancer has been beaten without the use of conventional medicine. It is the case for Young Chris ( 26 years) who beat cancer only using Natural therapy. His case is proof of the efficiency of the right diet and the adoption of a healthy living style.