Get advice on healthy eating, nutrition, and weight loss from expert dietitian Tara Gidus.See all posts »
Are you seeing pink ribbons everywhere? Well, it is October....which means it is Breast Cancer Awareness Month!
Cancer is such a difficult disease to think about prevention because we really don't know the cause and we definitely don't have a cure. The best advice I can give on prevention from a nutrition perspective is to eat a plant-based diet. This does not mean that you need to become a vegetarian (although that would be OK), but it does mean that meat and other animal protein (dairy) should not be the majority of your diet. I like to think of it as an accessory to the base which is whole grains, fruits, and vegetables. We know that the antioxidants, phytochemicals, vitamins, and minerals that are in these plant-based foods work in synergy to help prevent disease.
Going through treatment
If you have cancer and are going through treatment, make sure you are keeping your strength up with good foods.
- Focus on protein for healing. The cancer itself and the treatments to fight it all increase your body's need for protein.
- Keep yourself well hydrated. Chemo can be especially hard on the kidneys. Drink 8-10 glasses of water every day. Regardless of your treatment plan, hydration is a must.
- If you are nauseous, try some ginger and snack on bland complex carbs like dry toast, crackers, and pretzels.
- Do not lose weight. Even if you have been trying to lose weight for years, now is not the time to say good-bye to extra pounds. Your body needs nutrients to fight off the disease, and not getting enough food could leave you sicker and more weak.
Last but not least, ladies.....do your Breast Self Exams every month and get your mammograms as advised by your physician!
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