The word "Cancer" is one of the scariest words in our language, and while it may seem like that word often carries a death sentence with it, many people have overcome some of the deadliest cancers by making drastic diet and lifestyle changes.
How you live and what you choose to put in your body has a direct effect on whether you get cancer and whether you can survive cancer.
Cancer will affect, on average, one out of three us in our lifetime. Keeping this information in mind can be a powerful tool to manage one of the world's deadliest diseases.
There are many factors that figure into the causes of different types of cancer, and there are many unknowns as well.
But we do know one thing: what a person eats, or doesn't eat, can dramatically change the outcome and course of this grim disease.
Kate Flaherty is our guest blogger today who has written an article on the power of diet and cancer.
We may not always hear about them, but there are countless stories of end-stage cancer survivors who recovered from cancer by changing their diet. In fact a book called "The Cure is in the Kitchen" details the day-to-day diet and recovery of cancer patients.
Cancer studies show that most cancers are related to dietary deficiencies, so it is safe to assume that a positive change in a cancer patient's diet can help dramatically in the recovery process. In fact, many patients claim that changing their nutritional habits have played an enormous role in their recovery.
Dr Dean Ornish is just one of the doctors that has studied the cancer and diet relationship. He looked in particular, at the macrobiotic diet theory and published his reports in the British medical journal "Lancet" in 1990. His research showed that dietary changes had a very positive effect on the cancer patient's PET scans when high-tech surgery and drugs could not.
Many of the chemicals in commercially grown foods can be tied directly to many different cancers.
Chemicals in the food supply can not only block nutrients in the body, but actually contain substances that can disrupt hormones in the body, as well as contribute to the growth of tumors.
Pesticides and preservatives not only block nutrients essential for maintaining a strong immune system, but processed food contain far less of naturally occurring vitamins and minerals.
While a diet higher in fruits and vegetables is a great start to helping fight and heal from cancer, it is extremely important to avoid the deadly chemicals in conventionally grown foods.
Fruits such as grapes, peaches, strawberries, apples, and cherries typically have the highest amount of pesticides found on them when they are not organically grown. Vegetables including spinach, bell peppers, and potatoes generally have high pesticide residue as well.
Though more expensive, it is important to know that all organically grown fruits and vegetables are safer, especially for cancer patients.
Avoiding processed foods is especially important. Not only are processed foods missing necessary vitamins and minerals, they also have added preservatives, sugars, and chemicals. One of the worst of these is processed meats and lunchmeat. Nitrates and nitrites added to meats are known carcinogens and should be avoided at all costs.
In addition, conventionally raised meat not only is raised on a diet of pesticide-laden grain, but these animals are given antibiotics and growth hormones as well. Growth hormones have been shown to directly affect the growth of certain cancerous tumors, so avoiding conventionally raised meat is very important.
Eating naturally raised organic and grass fed meats whenever possible is obviously the safest and healthiest choice.
Cancer patients are often missing a variety of vitamins and minerals and this alone could be a key factor in recovery. Adding plenty of organic fruits, vegetables and naturally raised meat in one's diet will go a long way towards replacing those missing nutrients.
Avoid processed foods. And avoid sugar at all costs–high blood glucose feeds many types of cancers.
Multiple studies have proven that cancer does not have to be a death sentence and making necessary in diet and lifestyle can have a huge impact on whether a cancer patient survives or not.
Making these important lifestyle changes will determine whether you get cancer and survive or succumb to it:
– avoid smoking and second hand smoke
– drink alcohol in moderation; 1-2 drinks per day or less
– eat large amounts of organic vegetables and fruit
– avoid all processed, fried, junk, or refined carbohydrate/grain foods
– absolutely avoid all sodas and sweetened drinks, and avoid fruit juice as well
– avoid processed meats
– avoid trans fats, corn oil, soy oil, or canola oil
– eat only organic, grass-fed, free-range meat, fish and eggs
– eat “smart” fats (wild fatty fish, fish oil pills, avocados, nuts, olive oil, butter
– get daily sunlight exposure
– get plenty of antioxidants from your diet and supplements
– manage stress to regulate hormones appropriately
For more information on diet and cancer see my article "Sugar Kills".
Catherine (Cat) Ebeling RN BSN,is a back to basics diet and nutrition specialist. In addition to her advanced degree in nursing from a major medical school, she has spent the last 30 years intensely studying diet, health and nutrition. She also has a book titled “The Fat Burning Kitchen, Your 24 Hour Diet Transformation” that has sold over 60,000 copies worldwide, and has helped thousands of people transform their lives, lose weight and improve their health.