I´m obviously an advocate for healthy nutrition, not only have I dedicated the past several years of my life researching and preparing myself through my masters program and certifications; but holistic nutrition is also one of the three pillars on which my recovery was based: holistic nutrition, a gifted medical team and determination (which comes from family, faith and a positive mind). Scientific studies have concluded that nutrition and exercise are associated with a reduced risk of chronic disease, such as cancer. I also know from personal experience that food has healing properties that contribute greatly to a person´s recovery; which is why I´m still blown away when I hear people calling holistic nutrition “yet another food craze”. How could choosing whole, unprocessed, natural foods be considered a “trend” or a “marketing trick”? One of the most common excuses that I hear when people are resisting making healthy changes in their diet is, “My grandparents ate everything and lived well into their late 90s”.

Sorry Guys Weak Excuse!

Eating a variety of whole, unprocessed foods is not a health craze, but instead it is the definition of going back to our roots. Increases in industrialization and urbanization have created drastic changes in food and beverage intake, physical activity habits and body composition. We are not living in the same world as our grandparents! We are surrounded by fast food, I mean if you can even call it food, and no I’m not only referring to McDonalds. Go into your supermarket and analyze what percentage of food comes in a can or a box compared to the fresh produce. Meals have become more energy dense but not more nutrient dense, meaning we consume more calories per portion, with less vitamins, minerals and proteins. Also physical activity has decreased considerably, which in combination with these high-energy dense meals (high in calories) have led to obesity. Obesity, especially a large waist size has been linked to many chronic diseases, including cancer.

It´s important to understand that cancer is caused by both internal factors (inherited mutations, hormones, immune conditions and metabolic mutations) and external factors (tobacco, chemicals, radiation and infectious organisms), these factors may work collectively or in sequence to begin carcinogenesis (Marian & Roberts, 2010). Although all cancers begin with abnormal cell growth controlled by our genes, only 5% of cancers are hereditary. Which means that our nutrition and lifestyle choices are the most significant aspects, which we DO HAVE CONTROL OVER in cancer prevention.

Recent Cancer Prevention Recommendations (The American Cancer Society and the World Cancer Research Fund/American Institute for Cancer Research)

Maintain a healthy body weight , focused on BMI and waist size
Adopt a physically active lifestyle
Consume a healthy nutrition plan with an emphasis on plant food sources
Limit alcoholic consumption
Limit energy dense food and avoid sugary drinks
Limit the amount of red meat and AVOID processed meat
Limit the consumption of salt

Knowledge is power! Consult a Registered Holistic Nutritionist, a Registered Dietitian or a nutritionist with who specializes in Oncology Nutrition so that they can support you with a nutrition plan that is designed to meet your needs.

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