Nutrition Before During and After Cancer

Information on nutritional needs for cancer patients


Energy Balance and Body Fatness: AICR Report

With over 70% of Americans living with overweight or obesity, this factor is projected to overtake smoking as the biggest preventable cause of cancer. Understanding the contributing factors and causes of excess body fat are key to creating policies and interventions that will help make a difference in cancer prevention.

Energy Balance

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Appetite stimulation during cancer treatment

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Eating foods high in Sulphur helps to stimulate liver detoxification such as garlic; Brussel sprouts cabbage, onions, broccoli, cauliflower and radish.

Have a vegetable juice each day (beetroot, carrot, celery and ginger) as these encourage liver detoxification, and cleanse the system.

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Ensure adequate water intake. The thirst center in the brain is also closely related to appetite, dehydration may affect metabolism

Eat 4 or 5 small meals throughout the day, rather than 3 large ones. This ‘grazing effect’ keeps your metabolism working at a higher rate throughout the day and stimulates the appetite.

Small Portion1

Include spices in your diet, this may help to increase metabolism by adding thermogenic effect to the digestive system and raising the heat of the body to encourage the digestive juices to flow.  Spices, such as Chili, turmeric, garlic, cumin are some examples.

Spices

Spices collection on spoons

Reduce your consumption of saturated fats. Saturated fats decrease the appetite by decreasing the transit time of food through the digestive tract, reducing metabolism and affecting digestive and liver health.

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High fiber diets also slow transition time and reduce appetite.

whole grains and dietary fiber

Include whole grains and good quality protein (such as almonds, fish, and organic dairy products). Increase lean good quality protein at each meal. Have lean beef, lamb, tofu, beans, eggs; increase whole grains such as oats, brown rice, spelt, barley, millet, rye etc., increase full spectrum of vegetables and fruit of all colors; snack on almonds, pumpkin seeds, sunflower seeds, etc.

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Avoid soda drinks as these can affect the absorption of vital minerals and also cause over-stimulation of the nervous system due to the high amount of caffeine and sugar and they reduce appetite.  Sparkling or flat water is a healthier alternative

Some herbal teas aid digestion, – Dandelion, fenugreek, fennel, Spearmint, Peppermint, lemon and ginger.  Some other useful herbs include alfalfa, anise seed and cinnamon.

Tea

Daily physical activity will help with appetite stimulation.

Eat with others in a relaxed atmosphere.

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Tags: Appetite, cancer, foods

Category: During

 


Cook with Care

What if I told you, your vegetarian diet—the one designed to protect your health and your family’s health—could kill?!

Vegetables

Meh. That’d be a little dramatic. But look, there are a few ways to accidentally harm yourself or your dinner guests by preparing plants the wrong way, and a few of them aren’t obvious if you’ve never been taught. All cooks, especially new ones, should read up on the hidden dangers of seemingly harmless ingredients, and so… here we go.

The humble potato, an integral part of the world’s food supply, is definitely not toxic. But a potato abandoned and forgotten in your pantry will eventually turn green in places, or even sprout. That’s when you know the poison solanine is now present.

Green, sprouted potatoes

Throw away (or plant!) green or sprouted potatoes. Cooking with them will result in gastrointestinal illness at least, and eating enough can kill.

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Yuca (cassava)

Cassava root, otherwise known as Yuca, is a staple food for over a half billion people and one of the most drought-resistant, pest-resistant sources of carbohydrates in the tropics. And why is it so pest-resistant, you ask? That would be all the cyanide.

Cassava, especially bitter cassava, contains cyanide and must be processed before consumption. Even soaking the product for a few hours will make a difference. Otherwise, unprocessed bitter cassava can kill if consumed in sufficient quantities

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Rhubarb leaves

Rhubarb is a sour, red, celery-like stalk most often used in desserts like the ever-popular strawberry rhubarb pie. Rhubarb stalks are a great ingredient, but avoid the leaves: they’re high in oxalic acid, which causes kidney failure. Just 25 grams of oxalic acid would kill, but you’d need to eat 11 pounds of rhubarb leaves to get there.

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Asparagus berries

You’ll never see these in a grocery store but apart from the safe stems, the asparagus plant also produces red, poisonous berries. So if you ever find yourself on an asparagus farm or something, don’t eat the berries—even a handful will make you vomit

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Tomato vines & leaves

Technically tomatoes aren’t vegetables, but we’re still not putting them in fruit salads. And technically tomatoes aren’t toxic either, but their leaves and stems may be slightly poisonous. In fact, tomatoes were widely feared in medieval times.

These days we rarely see tomatoes plated with anything other than the red fruit, but if you’re served tomatoes “on the vine,” don’t eat the vine. Tomatine found in the stems and leaves are said to cause headaches and dizziness.

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Raw lima beans

Lima beans contain a toxin called limarin, which is only neutralized by cooking the beans for 15 minutes. Don’t be tempted to throw raw lima beans on salads, and don’t slow-cook raw beans without boiling first. Limarin is fatal at high doses, but even a couple raw lima beans can cause gastrointestinal distress. Canned is fine

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Raw kidney beans

Raw kidney beans contain phytohaemagglutinin, a toxic lectin, and must be boiled for 10 minutes before use in any recipe, including slow cooking. In fact, slow cooking raw kidney beans that haven’t been boiled multiplies the toxicity.

Raw kidney beans have killed rats in lab tests. In fact, just like gluten, avoidance diets targeting lectins like phytohaemagglutinin are starting to gain popularity.

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Underripe tomatillos

Each tomatillo grows on the vine shrouded by a papery “lantern,” which begins to dry and peel off on its own once the tomatillo is ripe. There’s some debate on whether or not the tomatillo inside is toxic before the lantern peels, but the fruit is sour at this stage anyway, and probably not worth the risk. All other parts of the plant—including the lantern, leaves, and stem—are poisonous, so wash your tomatillos well.

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Mystery mushrooms

Grocery store ‘shrooms are harmless, of course. But with the popularity of wild mushroom foraging on the rise, it’s important to remember the average forest isn’t all morels and chanterelles. Some mushrooms, like the intimidating “death cap” amanita phalloides, can kill in one bite. Unless you’re an expert or you brought one along, don’t taste anything until you’re sure.

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Meet a Registered Dietitian this year

RD

New Year brings with it a lot of hopes, promises and resolutions, one of those promises that you make should be about watching what and how much you eat.

The daily promises about curative powers of everything from pet ownership to meditation. And various doctors discussing another superfood, it’s easy to see why most of us get confused about what we ought to be eating, taking or doing to optimize our health and when to seek advice from a Registered dietitian to learn the truth rather than listen to fluff.

RDN

The National Center for Health Statistics reports that 18 percent of Americans use herbal supplements. That’s more than twice the rate of the next-most-popular complementary medicines, chiropractic and osteopathic manipulation (8.5 percent) and yoga (8.4 percent).In addition, the National Center for Complementary and Integrative Health says that 92 percent of Americans believe massage therapy is an effective treatment for reducing pain.

People are highly motivated now to try to stay healthy by taking vitamins, herbs and nutraceuticals, or by seeking out complementary and alternative medical treatments. People need to discuss these with their doctors and dietitian.

Vitamins, herbs and supplements

Traditional medicine, unfortunately, does focus on treating disease. Treating the whole person rather than just the symptoms of illness is becoming more mainstream and even conventional physicians are increasingly likely to discuss the nutraceuticals and wellness therapies patients have already prescribed for themselves.

Personal touch

Registered dietitians provide nutritional counseling, answer food/diet related questions, to become healthy and stay healthy, rather than just looking for Diet when sick.