Posted by Melanie Bowen via Jeff Berk, BOLT International;
Stylized representation of some sort of nutritious food. p.s. Sorry Melanie. If you thought you were going to get posted WITHOUT a sarcastic intro… Not Today!
So I got this request to post from one of our blog readers. She can describe herself better than I can (since I’ve never met her, i suppose that this is especially true):
“Melanie Bowen is an awareness advocate for natural health and holistic therapies for cancer patients. You will often find her highlighting the great benefits of different nutritional, emotional, and physical treatments on those with illness in her efforts to increase attentiveness and responsiveness on like topics”
I’ll get to Melanie’s post in a second. I just want to put this in context. I believe in drugs. I just love the little fellers. They kept Steve Jobs alive long enough to make toys for all the spoiled brats who are littering the streets of our major cities as we speak (you can never find one of those road paver steam roller machines when you really need one). But drugs don’t constitute the universe of medicine. Because where drugs leave off… there’s always surgery.
Except for minor details like recovery time and some serious shit pain, I believe in surgery almost as much as I believe in drugs. Heck, take the two together and my walking around is literal proof of how far medicine has come in my life time.
And where surgery leaves off… So if my attitudes are, if you will, befitting The Dark Side, may I present to you Melanie’s more holistic view of the world. She’s going to share some of her thoughts about nutrition and aggressive disease. If you have anything constructive to add to her comments, please do. And if you think that they’re hokey, well… they’re HER hokey comments. Not mine.
So here ya go…
Eating for Your Life: Nutrition During Cancer
Having a nutritious diet is important for everyone, but especially for people who have been diagnosed with cancer. When undergoing treatment for cancer, it is vital for you to take care of yourself. Having a healthy diet contributes to a positive mood, helps reduce the side effects of treatment, may increase life expectancy, allows your body to heal more quickly and boosts immunity. It also promotes strength and energy, particularly for those suffering from aggressive disease.
Be certain that you get enough protein in your diet. Protein helps to repair damage to the body caused by cancer, surgery and treatment. Without adequate protein intake, your body will resort to a condition called catabolism, which is the breakdown of lean muscle mass for the body’s protein needs, this is particularly important for those suffering from rare but aggressive disease like mesothelioma or pancreatic cancer. This will cause a reduction in your strength and energy levels.
Fat is an excellent source of long lasting energy for your body. It is essential for the absorption of certain vitamins, such as A, E and D, which are all very important for maintaining immunity, mood and and energy. Omega-3 is a fat that you should also make sure to add to your diet. Your body cannot produce these fatty acids on its own, so they must come from food sources or supplements. Omega-3 plays a significant role in cell repair, hormone synthesis, mood and immunity.
Carbohydrates are necessary for energy, cognitive function and mood. When consuming grains, choose whole ones, since they provide the most nutrition. Avoid sugar and refined or processed carbohydrates at all costs! These substances destroy immunity, leaving you wide open for infection. They also contribute to hypoglycemia, or low blood sugar, leading to depression and weight gain.
Fruit and Vegetables
Fruits and vegetables are, by far, the best things to eat when you have cancer. They contain numerous vitamins, minerals, antioxidants and phytonutrients that will support your health during and after treatment. They are also a great source of fiber–with enzymes that aid proper digestion and nutrient absorption.
Statistics suggest that most Americans, about 80 to 90 percent, suffer from chronic dehydration because they don’t drink enough water. Water flushes toxins and waste from the body, promotes energy, aids weight loss and reduces strain on various bodily systems, such as the liver and kidneys. When you’re dehydrated, your kidneys are over worked and your liver has to pick up the slack for detoxification. As a result neither of these systems work as well as they could for toxin build up in your body. Many vitamins are also water soluble, meaning they require water intake for absorption and utilization. Make sure that you drink spring or distilled water. Avoid tap water, as it contains chemicals such as chlorine, chloramine, fluoride and arsenic that can further harm your health.