https://www.nccn.org/patients/resources/life_after_cancer/nutrition.aspxWhat's Best to Eat?
During cancer treatment, many people lose weight because chemotherapy and radiation side effects, such as nausea, taste changes and loss of appetite, make eating unpalatable; sometimes the therapy itself impairs the absorption of nutrients. Other people may put on pounds from medications, reduced activity, or emotional and stress-related eating. Consulting with a dietician may help you develop the best eating plan for your situation. Ask your doctor for a referral.
Whether you want to gain, lose, or maintain weight, experts recommend that cancer survivors follow these guidelines for a healthy diet:
Eat a minimum of five servings of fruits and vegetables a day. A serving can be a cup of dark leafy greens or berries, a medium fruit, or a half cup of other colorful choices; use plant-based seasonings like parsley and turmeric;
Go for whole grains. Opt for high-fiber breads and cereals, including brown rice, barley, bulgur, and oats; avoid refined foods, such as donuts and white bread, and those high in sugar;
Choose lean protein. Stick to fish, poultry, and tofu, limiting red meat and processed meats;
Keep dairy low fat. Select skim milk, low-fat yogurt, and reduced-fat cheeses.Other tips to maximize nutrition
Aim for a variety of foods. Create a balanced plate that is one-half cooked or raw vegetables, one-fourth lean protein (chicken, fish, lean meat, or dairy) and one-fourth whole grains;
Eat fatty fish, such as salmon, sardines, and canned tuna at least twice a week. The fats in these fish are the "good" heart-healthy omega-3 fats; other sources of these fats include walnuts, canola oil, and flaxseeds;
Limit alcohol consumption. Alcohol has been linked to cancer risk. Men should have no more than two drinks a day; women should have no more than one drink;
Eat foods high in vitamin D. These include salmon, sardines, fortified orange juice, milk, and fortified cereal. Research suggests that vitamin D, which also comes from sun exposure, prevents cancer and may decrease the risk of recurrence and improve survival. People in regions with limited sunshine may be deficient and thus benefit from a vitamin D3 supplement (ask your physician about a blood test to measure deficiency);
Food – not supplements – are the best source of vitamins and minerals. There is no evidence that dietary supplements provide the same anti-cancer benefits as fruits and vegetables, and some high-dose supplements may actually increase cancer risk.
Be "mindful" when eating. Research suggests that we tend to eat more calories and food with fewer nutrients when we are watching TV, driving, or doing other activities.To Go or Not to Go Organic
Research on the nutritional benefits of organic fruits and vegetables has been mixed, and there have been no studies examining whether organic produce is better at preventing cancer or cancer recurrence than non-organic produce.
Stephanie Meyers, a senior clinical nutritionist at the Dana-Farber Cancer Center in Boston, tells her clients to buy whatever produce they like, and to rinse all fruits and vegetables thoroughly with clean water. Buying organic foods is a personal choice, Meyer says, and cancer survivors do themselves no harm by not choosing to go organic.
For more information on pesticides in produce, visit the Environmental Working Group's Shopper's Guide.
58 yo male at diagnosis - T1bN0M0, 0/15 lymph nodes, low grade/moderately differentiated adenocarcinoma
03/2016 colonoscopy #1: 2 small polyps removed in left colon; CEA = 1.3
04/2016 colonoscopy #2: caecum sessile 3.5 cm polyp piecemeal removed with kind of clear margins
05/2016 CT scan, blood test ...
05/2016 "prophylactic" laparoscopic right hemicolectomy with a few complications (bleeding, leak, infection)
06/2017 CT scan (lower body), colonoscopy OK; CEA = 1.6