How obsessed are you all with diet?

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Pagola44
Posts: 315
Joined: Mon Jul 03, 2023 7:57 pm

How obsessed are you all with diet?

Postby Pagola44 » Sat Jan 27, 2024 3:15 am

I try and eat healthy, to be honest I always did even before I was diagnosed.

I know there are studies that show associations between recurrence and healthier diets that include whole grains, vegetables etc.

But my question is how obsessed are you guys with diet? Are you all very strict in what you eat?

Do you avoid sugar at all costs? I always hear that "sugar feeds cancer" , I also read a study about Glycemic Load and colon cancer recurrence (https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pmc/articles/PMC3502194/)

"Higher dietary glycemic load and total carbohydrate intake were statistically significant associated with an increased risk of recurrence and mortality in stage III colon cancer patients. "

Now I feel guilty if I have a treat such as a cake, a donut or cookie. I get worried about what I eat, if i'm not eating "healthy" enough or I should totally avoid any high sugar foods.

Would like to hear your thoughts
29m Male.
DX: CC, Right Hepatic Flexure, 4cm, T3, G2, M0
Stage III3B , Positive lymph nodes: (2/20)
Baseline CEA value: 1.98
LVI and PNI: absent
Surgical margins: clear
No lynch Syndrome or MSI
Primary surgery type: Laparascopic

zephyr
Posts: 360
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 7:31 am

Re: How obsessed are you all with diet?

Postby zephyr » Sat Jan 27, 2024 11:25 am

I'm not an expert but I think I've worked with it all over almost 8 years as a Stage 4 patient, and have worked with a few oncology dietitians. I was vegan when I was diagnosed and I've been all over the board since then. There are differing theories with impressive experts on all sides. One group says keto is the answer: avoid sugar and most carbs generally, consume more protein and fats, because glucose feeds cancer so you need to deprive it of glucose. Another group says yeah, that's good, but not so fast because cancer cells are smart and adaptable so if you deprive them of glucose as a fuel source, they will learn how to thrive on protein, and then you'll be feeding them. What I have found to be most successful - and this is just me - is a periodic fast-mimicking diet followed by a Mediterranean diet based on Valter Longo's research and about $40 million in clinical trials, many (or all?) of which were conducted with cancer patients. If you're interested in researching it, I recommend the section on Cancer in his book, The Longevity Diet. He also has some YouTube videos and information on his website. Again, I'm not an expert and this is based on my experience (you get what you pay for and this is free), and how I've found diet to affect my cancer. Everyone's body is different so what works for one may not work for another, and that may explain all the differing advice and testimonials for various cancer dietary plans.

As for how obsessed I am, I pay attention but try not to be insanely strict or obsessive because it creates too much stress, stress causes inflammation, and (I believe) inflammation feeds cancer. I use the 80/20 rule: I try to get it right at least 80% of the time and don't worry about the other 20%.
Nov-2009 Early stage CRC, routine colonoscopy
2010-2014 F/U colonoscopies, all clear
Jun-2016 CRC during F/U colonoscopy, surgery, Stage 4, KRAS, MSS
Aug-2016-May-2018 Folfox, 5FU, Folfiri & Avastin
Aug/Sep-2018 YAG laser surgeries (Germany), 11 nodules removed
Nov-2018 clean CT scan
Mar-2019 New lung nodules
Apr-2019 Dec-2020 Xeloda/Avastin, SBRT, cont. Xeloda/Avastin
Mar-2021 Forfiri/Avastin
Mar-2022 Ablation & Thoracotomy
Feb-2023 Folfiri & Avastin
Nov-2023 Xeloda & Avastin

JP66
Posts: 21
Joined: Sun Jan 21, 2024 8:42 am
Facebook Username: joseph peck
Location: Westchester, NY

Re: How obsessed are you all with diet?

Postby JP66 » Sat Jan 27, 2024 12:10 pm

I am definitely obsessed with that topic, LOL :)


I basically am a big believer in what you hinted at namely: Based on what I have read in the scientific literature I feel there is little doubt that diet can influence cancers of all kinds. (Plus I have a good friend who beat a late stage prostate cancer and so I'm following his footsteps.)

Personally I was mostly vegan before my diagnosis as my wife and daughter have been fully vegan for quite some time so switching to a 100% vegan diet was easy as a starting point. Next, however, I have a personal guess that I helped my cancer along by drinking too much red wine (as in 500 ml to 750 ml almost every day for 20 years) and now I feel that depriving the cancer of all it's possible favorite foods then maybe, just maybe a "healthy" diet in combination with radiation and chemo will at the very least slow and the very best eliminate the cancer growing inside my body. As such I am trying to reduce or even eliminate the list of potential culprits that the scientific literature tells us MIGHT be aiding and abetting our cancer.

So . . . I have eliminated meat (including chicken), dairy, and alcohol totally and aside from a few cheats I try to stay away from gluten and high glycemic foods like white rice. It's really not that hard so long as I shop for the right foods and don't buy the other stuff. My dietary goal is to stick to fruits, vegetables, legumes, nuts, and complex starches like oatmeal, brown rice, quinoa, etc. Of course, I "cheat" with a granola bar, or Impossible Burger, or really cheat at a Thanksgiving dinner, but in general I try to stick to a gluten free vegan diet. I also use calorie restriction off and on as well. Not intentionally, but just as a function of skipping meals due to a busy schedule including treatments etc. I think the scientific literature on fasting or other forms of calorie restriction are pretty clear as regards inhibiting cancer growth.

I should mention that I also try to hit 300 mins a week of exercise, but by exercise I'm talking fast walking, squats, planks, and light weight lifting with high reps and 5 sets of things like curls, lat pulls, tricep bends, etc.

Now will this make a difference? I have no idea, but it makes me feel good thinking that I am trying AND it's generally considered healthier overall. So far the hardest part has been reducing sugary foods like putting honey in my oatmeal or eating a granola bar loaded with peanut butter and sugar.
- Male 57 y/o
- TIIIbN+M1
- Stage IV (diagnosed 10/23)
- MSI status - ?
- KRAS non-mutant
- surgery - TME planned post chemo
- Modified Neo-adjuvant Therapy (I'm not sure why they call it "modified" although my guess is the chemo is FOLFIRINOX and not FOLFOX)
- tumor 3.9 cm craniocaudal length, 7.4 cm from AV, moderately differentiated
- 01/24 completed 27 treatments radiation+Xeloda
- CEA 8,10,11/23 1.8,1.3,1.6
- dihydroxi vit D 70.9 pg/ml

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Peregrine
Posts: 255
Joined: Tue Mar 01, 2022 1:18 am

Re: How obsessed are you all with diet?

Postby Peregrine » Mon Jan 29, 2024 12:07 am

Pagola44 wrote:...
Now I feel guilty if I have a treat such as a cake, a donut or cookie. I get worried about what I eat, if i'm not eating "healthy" enough or I should totally avoid any high sugar foods.

Would like to hear your thoughts

Hi Pagola44 -

What you eat while on chemo depends on the context. For example, if you are on chemo and your Body Mass Index (BMI) drops below 18.5, then some recommend that you eat anything you can tolerate just so you can gain some weight and re-gain muscle mass:

https://coloncancersupport.colonclub.com/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=60780&p=481412&hilit=cachexia#p481408

See also:
https://coloncancersupport.colonclub.com/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=66306&p=513442&hilit=cachexia#p513442

But ... not everybody agrees with this approach. Some experts disagree on how to handle cachexia appropriately.

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Cowgirl918
Posts: 326
Joined: Sun Jan 17, 2016 12:55 am
Location: Indiana

Re: How obsessed are you all with diet?

Postby Cowgirl918 » Tue Jan 30, 2024 11:35 pm

I am finding diet very challenging. Since my cancer is a rare type, a combination low amine and low residue seems to be the best plan. There must be some truth to the diet as I “pay dearly” when I deviate. Ironically many of the items on the low residue diet are counter intuitive to healthy eating such as simple carbs, white bread etc.
I like the 80/20 rule mentioned above. If I find a cookie that is plain enough to eat I have one and enjoy it.

Otherwise I am sticking to small meals, high protein in white meats and only iceberg lettuce occasionally. At least I can enjoy white toast without feeling guilty.
I think that diet for me will always be a work in progress with changes and adjustments along the way. And yes…. I am rather obsessed with diet as food now directly impacts my quality of life.
HX Colon Polyps Villious and Tubillovillous
12/29/15 Colonoscopy/Endoscopy - Ascending Colon Mass- Hemicolectomy Scheduled
1/17/2016 Right Hemicolectomy Cancelled
1/25/2016 CT No evidence of other disease
2/12/2016 EMR-ascending colon mass 80%
8/12/2016 EMR #2 ascending colon mass curative
8/13/16 NED
7/26/2023 Neuroendocrine mass small bowel, two mesenteric lymph nodes
9/1/2023 Small bowel resection jejunum and lymph nodes removed mesentery

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Green Tea
Posts: 441
Joined: Mon Oct 24, 2016 10:48 am

Re: How obsessed are you all with diet?

Postby Green Tea » Wed Jan 31, 2024 5:19 am

Pagola44 wrote:...But my question is how obsessed are you guys with diet? Are you all very strict in what you eat?

To answer your question, "yes" I am very obsessed with what I eat and drink, especially whether the food and beverage items are compatible with each other and compatible with whatever supplements/medications/chemo that I happen to be on at the moment.

14 Incompatible Food Combinations You Must Avoid
https://coloncancersupport.colonclub.com/viewtopic.php?f=1&t=66548

P.S. - Green tea does not mix well with certain drugs, e.g., FOLFIRI.

Pagola44
Posts: 315
Joined: Mon Jul 03, 2023 7:57 pm

Re: How obsessed are you all with diet?

Postby Pagola44 » Fri Feb 02, 2024 7:11 pm

Very fascinating responses thanks guys
29m Male.
DX: CC, Right Hepatic Flexure, 4cm, T3, G2, M0
Stage III3B , Positive lymph nodes: (2/20)
Baseline CEA value: 1.98
LVI and PNI: absent
Surgical margins: clear
No lynch Syndrome or MSI
Primary surgery type: Laparascopic

Pagola44
Posts: 315
Joined: Mon Jul 03, 2023 7:57 pm

Re: How obsessed are you all with diet?

Postby Pagola44 » Fri Feb 02, 2024 7:13 pm

I try and make myself berry smoothies everyday, but i read online how anti oxidant supplements can interfere with chemotherapy effectiveness, i suppose having berry smoothies everyday wont be an issue?
29m Male.
DX: CC, Right Hepatic Flexure, 4cm, T3, G2, M0
Stage III3B , Positive lymph nodes: (2/20)
Baseline CEA value: 1.98
LVI and PNI: absent
Surgical margins: clear
No lynch Syndrome or MSI
Primary surgery type: Laparascopic

zephyr
Posts: 360
Joined: Thu Aug 18, 2016 7:31 am

Re: How obsessed are you all with diet?

Postby zephyr » Fri Feb 02, 2024 7:37 pm

Berries are not the same as supplements. Big difference. Until you see a legitimate study saying that eating berries interferes with chemo, don't worry about it. One of the most common pieces of nutritional advice I've received - from several oncologists and dietitians - is to eat 1 cup of berries (frozen or fresh) every day.
Nov-2009 Early stage CRC, routine colonoscopy
2010-2014 F/U colonoscopies, all clear
Jun-2016 CRC during F/U colonoscopy, surgery, Stage 4, KRAS, MSS
Aug-2016-May-2018 Folfox, 5FU, Folfiri & Avastin
Aug/Sep-2018 YAG laser surgeries (Germany), 11 nodules removed
Nov-2018 clean CT scan
Mar-2019 New lung nodules
Apr-2019 Dec-2020 Xeloda/Avastin, SBRT, cont. Xeloda/Avastin
Mar-2021 Forfiri/Avastin
Mar-2022 Ablation & Thoracotomy
Feb-2023 Folfiri & Avastin
Nov-2023 Xeloda & Avastin

Pagola44
Posts: 315
Joined: Mon Jul 03, 2023 7:57 pm

Re: How obsessed are you all with diet?

Postby Pagola44 » Fri Feb 02, 2024 10:03 pm

zephyr wrote:Berries are not the same as supplements. Big difference. Until you see a legitimate study saying that eating berries interferes with chemo, don't worry about it. One of the most common pieces of nutritional advice I've received - from several oncologists and dietitians - is to eat 1 cup of berries (frozen or fresh) every day.


Great thanks!
29m Male.
DX: CC, Right Hepatic Flexure, 4cm, T3, G2, M0
Stage III3B , Positive lymph nodes: (2/20)
Baseline CEA value: 1.98
LVI and PNI: absent
Surgical margins: clear
No lynch Syndrome or MSI
Primary surgery type: Laparascopic

rp1954
Posts: 1847
Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2011 1:13 am

Re: How obsessed are you all with diet?

Postby rp1954 » Mon Feb 05, 2024 11:14 pm

Pagola44 wrote:... but i read online how anti oxidant supplements can interfere with chemotherapy effectiveness....

I would suggest, again, that that phrase preys on the intellectual sloth, FUD, and chemical illiteracy of many patients and doctors with broad, confounded, non-specific terminology like "anti-oxidant", where specific chemical combinations and interactions are the name of the game. All chemistries deserve knowledgeable support, and a little caution.

My wife had to use megavitamin levels of many "antioxidant supplements" to help keep her 5FU working for years and years, well beyond oncology's time envelopes for 5FU based regimes, with fewer and lower side effects. For our purposes, with 5FU "only" - no oxi-/iri-/Avastin, concentrated extracts without the sugars or carbs, were very desirable to help keep 5FU turned "on".

Your own oncologist apparently shoots you with enough of a megavitamin/antioxidant (LV) to overdose my wife on her chemo with LV doses ca three to 80 fold too high, depending on averaging period (monthly vs injection day).
watchful, active researcher and caregiver for stage IVb/c CC. surgeries 4/10 sigmoid etc & 5/11 para-aortic LN cluster; 8 yrs immuno-Chemo for mCRC; now no chemo
most of 2010 Life Extension recommendations and possibilities + more, some (much) higher, peaking ~2011-12, taper chemo to almost nothing mid 2018, IV C-->2021. Now supplements


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