Eating Well: Diet and Nutrition
Cancer survivors should strive for a plant-based diet full of fruits, vegetables and legumes to provide vitamins, minerals, fibers, carotenoids and other beneficial nutrients that help prevent cancer.
You should also incorporate whole grains and high-fiber foods — including whole-grain breads, cereals, rice, pasta and beans — into your diet. Associated with a lower risk of developing cancer, whole grain foods are made from the entire grain seed (wheat, rice, oats and barley) so they’re higher in fiber, vitamins and minerals than processed grains.
Cancer survivors should avoid or limit their consumption of saturated fats, processed foods, high-calorie foods, added or refined sugars, and processed or red meat.
A major contributor of fat and cholesterol, processed and red meat are associated with an increased risk of developing cancer. Nitrates, which can lead to cancer, are added to many processed meats. Additionally, cooking meat at high temperatures produces mutagens and carcinogens known to cause cancer.
If you do eat red meat, opt for lean cuts and smaller portions, and prepare meat, poultry and fish by baking, broiling or poaching.
A diet emphasizing vegetables, fruits, whole grains and legumes can reduce your risk of developing cancer.
What you should eat:
- 2.5 cups of a variety of vegetables and fruits daily
- Include vegetables and fruits at every meal
- Emphasize whole vegetables and fruits
- Choose 100% juice if you drink vegetable or fruit juices
- Protein sources, such as beans, poultry or fish
- Whole grains instead of refined or processed grains
Brown rice instead of white rice
What you should avoid:
- Creamy sauces, dressings and dips with fruits and vegetables
- Processed meats, such as bacon, sausage, luncheon meats and hot dogs
- Red meat including beef, pork and lamb
- Fried foods and charbroiled meat
- Refined carbohydrates, including pastries, candy, sugar-sweetened breakfast cereals and other high-sugar foods
Forget the Fads: Three Real Ways to Reduce Your Cancer Risk
February 27, 2017
Cancer Urban Legend: Extreme Diets Can Lower My Cancer Risk
February 20, 2017
Diet during cancer treatment: Tips to ease dry mouth
September 8, 2014
High-fat diet? You are what you eat, right down to your DNA
September 3, 2014
Diet during cancer treatment: Tips to combat nausea
August 25, 2014