Doctors tell their patients all that time that if you’re overweight (or obese) losing weight can help cut your risks of cancer, but one expert cautions that not all diet plans are as effective in bringing down that risk. A diet that offers protection against cancer is one that involves long-term changes in how you eat, and includes a variety of anti cancer foods from every food group according to Daxaben Amin, senior clinical dietitian out of the University of Texas M.D. Anderson Cancer Center.
We all know that diets that support short-term changes (aka, diet trends) don’t work. Not only is it nigh on impossible to stick to the plan over the long haul, but these ways of eating often don’t give you the nutrients your body needs to stay healthy, much less free of cancer. So while you might hear about (or even experience) rapid results for a bit, this doesn’t mean that boast worthy weight loss is healthy or lasting. Losing more than two pounds a week is actually considered bad for you, it causes you to drop more muscle than fat, and is damaging to the body.
Topping the list of the best cancer fighting eating plans is one we all have heard so much about – the Mediterranean style diet – a lifelong commitment to eating well that also happens to suppress cancer and fight heart disease. This plan calls for eating plenty of fruits, veggies and other plant based foods, using herbs/spices for flavor (not salt), limiting how much red meat and alcohol you consume on a regular basis, using healthy fats (olive and canola oil) instead of butter and eating fish/poultry at least two times a week.
Another winner on the cancer-fighting diet front is the whole body diet, a plan that calls for eating 6 to 7 small meals per day, rather than the 3 large ones we’re all used to. In terms of cancer prevention, this way of eating calls for fruits, veggies and whole grains in at least half of your meals for the day, limiting foods that are high in fat, eating lean protein and being active every single day.
When it comes to the plans that aren’t so effective… Gluten free diets have grown in popularity, but experts’ caution that you shouldn’t adopt this eating style unless you’ve been diagnosed with gluten intolerance. Those who follow this plan stay away from foods with whole grains that are also high in fiber, vitamins and minerals. It’s the fiber and other essential nutrients that while bad for the celiac patient, help to protect body cells from the type of damage that can precede cancer.
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Best (And Worst) Diets For Fighting Cancer… Continued…
Also on the no-no list are carb free diets. If you totally cut our carbs you deprive your body of its basic source of energy. You’ll also be withholding some important cancer-fighting foods, fruits, vegetables, whole grains and beans. Instead of cutting the carbs altogether, choose them ore carefully. Go for whole grains instead of refined ones… limit the cakes and cookies.
When it comes to keeping yourself at a healthy weight, and thus reducing your risk of many forms of cancer, moderation is the most important thing to keep in mind. You’re making a lifelong commitment according to Amin, and the best chance for long-term success comes from doing things in moderation. Remember too, preventing cancer, including the consumption of anti cancer foods, is the most effective treatment available at the moment for what can be a deadly disease.