Healthy Eating While Dealing with Cancer (Guest Post)

We all know what a great impact diet can have on a person’s wellbeing and I have witnessed first-hand how a diet rich in plant-based whole foods has kept people free of illness and virtually stopped the aging process. A healthy vegan diet has acted as a sort of preventative medicine for me and I am not a big fan of non-natural medical solutions that our society too often relies on in reaction to ailments. I have heard many stories about how diets that are plant-based and free of processing, chemicals and toxins have helped cancer sufferers get stronger while they recover, but I have never felt qualified to write on the subject. Luckily, that is no longer an obstacle to sharing information about diet and cancer.

I was recently approached by Jillian McKee, who works with the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance and is an expert in complementary and alternative medicines when used in conjunction with traditional cancer treatments. She has written the following guest post which I am happy to be able to share:

Living with cancer and going for traditional treatments can be a scary thing.  You may be wondering what you can do to help in the healing process.  One thing that you may want to try would be to incorporate a healthy diet into your daily routine. Healthy eating has a number of benefits that you will find to be useful for you while seeking treatment for cancer.  You should first familiarize yourself with these benefits so that you can make the decision on whether or not you would like to talk to your doctor about making any changes.

Cancer patients who eat healthy and nutritious foods often find that their energy levels are improved throughout the day. This is due to the fact that healthy foods often have vitamins and minerals that aid the body in the healing process. You will also find that these vitamins give you an extra boost of energy the more that you eat them.  If you incorporate healthy foods into your diet all the time, you can expect to have a lot more energy than if you were eating a diet filled with junk or processed foods every single day of your life.

Another fantastic benefit to eating healthier foods is that they can actually improve your mood and help your body to heal itself quicker.  Healthy foods will note cure your cancer on their own, but they can help you to feel better and in less pain when you are going for more traditional treatments.  After you go for a treatment session, you may even find that you are in less pain simply because your body has the ability to heal itself a lot quicker.  This will help to boost your mood and help you to feel more at ease.

Besides having an increased sense of wellbeing, a nutritious diet can be beneficial in many other aspects.  You will want to talk with your doctor about changing your diet so that you are able to incorporate more healthy foods into your life.  Your doctor can recommend healthier foods that you will enjoy.  This also means adjusting portion sizes or number of times you eat throughout the day so that you will meet your caloric intake for that particular day.  This ensures a healthy and sufficient recovery from your symptoms of mesothelioma or other type of cancer.

Whether you were just diagnosed with cancer or are in remission, healthy eating is never a bad idea.  Even individuals who do not have cancer will benefit greatly from changing their diet to an organic and cleaner one.  You will want to familiarize yourself with different diet plans available and talk to your doctor about which one is the best choice for you.  Being healthy and feeling your best can be as easy as changing the way that you eat and what you put into your body at each and every meal.

May this information help. May you be strong. Namaste.

One Response to Healthy Eating While Dealing with Cancer (Guest Post)
  1. Kyrstin Clodfelter
    November 15, 2012 | 14:11

    I do agree with the importance of healthy eating in general during all stages of life. However, as an oncology dietitian, I have found that 80% of my patients are lucky to be able to eat anything at all, healthy or otherwise. They are suffering from nausea, vomiting, loss of appetite, diarrhea and so on. Coming from an outpatient practice where I counselled on weight loss, I had to really change my thinking with my onlcology patients. My instructions to them are often “eat anything that sounds good to you”. This is a far cry from what I usually teach, but since malnutrition and weight loss are related to increased morbidity and mortality, I think it is important to realize that cancer patients need to focus less on “eat healthy” and more on “eat”. The “eat healthy” aspect can resume when treatment is over; I bring many of my patients back afterwards so we can tweak their diets to promote life-long health. Not to discredit this article at all; feeling better is definitely a goal of all cancer patients and filling your body with the proper nutrients will assist in this. I just think it’s important to note that for many patients, healthy eating needs to be a smaller priority than say…staying alive.

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