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  • Nutrition Again

    Posted 8/18/2013 by hhill
      It is always delightful to read an article that is confirming common sense. This one, from Nutrition and Cancer, reminds us that there is no such thing as a "miracle food". Food and diet are frequent topics of conversation in my office--usually clustered around two general themes: what should I eat during treatment and what can I eat to lower the risk of recurrence and stay healthy? The first question has a short tongue-in-cheek-but-true answer: "whatever you want, whatever sounds good." The only food rule during treatment is to eat enough protein as both chemotherapy and radiation kill healthy cells, and our bodies need the protein to rebuild. Beyond that adage, it is all about personal comfort food and what slides down when you may not be feeling so well. Some women eat ice cream, some love soup, others crave spicy foods. There is a general preference for carbs, and there is an old joke about the ideal meal during chemo being mashed potatoes, mac and cheese, and white bread. Read more... Comments (0)
  • Dietary Supplements

    Posted 5/22/2013 by hhill
      This is another controversial and frequently misunderstood topic. Many, if not most, cancer patients at least think about their diets and wonder if there are foods that can be added or subtracted that would make a difference in their cancer progression. As far as I know (and I do try to keep up), there is zero proof that anything we eat or don't eat causes cancer or cures cancer or even has an impact on recurrence risk or progression. Certainly there is a great deal known about healthy eating, and the usual advice is the usual advice: meaning eat lots of fruits and vegetables, minimize the amounts of red meat, white flour, sugar. Today's article takes this all a step further with a careful look by the Clinical Practice Committee of the Society of Integrative Oncology at commonly used nutritional supplements. Read more... Comments (0)
  • Benefits of Yoga

    Posted 4/6/2013 by hhill
      Learning more about the potential benefits of yoga is not really surpising, but it is nice to read more positives about this special form of exercise. For several years, I participated in a weekly class for women who had been treated for breast cancer, and it was great. Indeed, I felt strong and more flexible and very relaxed in the immediate moments afterwards. Life changed, and that particular class stopped, and I have not really done yoga since. Last summer, I went one morning to a drop in yoga class near our cottage in Maine. I had seen the sign, and it seemed like an easy and good opportunity to try this again. Instead, it was a stark reminder of the difference a few years (maybe 8, not really sure when the earlier yoga class ended) can make, and that, although I do go to the gym daily, yoga clearly uses different muscles. Several of the poses were very tough, and the larger problem was the next morning when I could barely move. Read more... Comments (0)