"The groundwork of all happiness is health." - Leigh Hunt

Using food to fight prostate cancer

By Suzanne Rose

Last week I attended. Massachusetts Prostate Cancer Coalition 14Th Annual Symposium. I wasn't in any respect surprised that nearly every seat within the nutrition session was taken, given the recent headlines Coffee may protect against prostate cancer. Development and that heart healthy Omega-3 fats can promote this.. Perhaps everyone hoped to learn more about coffee and other “miracle” foods.

Nutritionist Sheila Wolfson

Boston area nutritionist Sheila Wolfson The focus is on something more realistic but just as vital – healthy eating once the cancer appears. What he needed to say about particular foods wasn't exactly groundbreaking, but the best way he linked food to quality of life captured the audience's attention. Wolfson notes that men with prostate cancer (or anyone with cancer for that matter) often feel they’ve little control over their lives. But by making healthy food decisions, individuals with cancer can take control of their health, which may improve their behavior. By making more nutritious food decisions, people can construct energy and vitality and improve their quality of life.

Wolfson's introduction made me think she was going to rattle off the seemingly countless and overwhelming list of dietary changes that men with prostate cancer must make without acknowledging how difficult it could possibly be. . Instead, he talked about what he ate growing up — a number of meat and few vegetables, mostly of the canned variety. She admits that maintaining a healthy diet doesn't at all times come naturally and other people must take small steps over time to achieve success. Wolfson recommends three steps toward a more healthy weight-reduction plan:

  • Eat more plant-based foods.
  • Eat less animal food.
  • Watch portion sizes and eat all foods sparsely.

A growing body of evidence suggests that top intakes of pork and other animal foods, together with extra weight, increase the chance of certain diseases, including prostate cancer. That's why Wolfson said people should fill two-thirds of their plates with plant-based foods like vegetables, grains, fruits, legumes (beans), nuts and seeds.

If you're not a fan of vegetables, Wolfson offers one other helpful tip: Try one latest vegetable or good-for-you food per week—and don't quit for those who don't prefer it. “Kel may not be excited for you the first time, but keep working to make it palatable,” Wolfson said. “Try cooking it differently, adding it to a soup, or finding another recipe that appeals to you.”

When asked about coping with a wheat allergy, Wolfson said eating whole grains doesn't mean a slice of whole wheat bread. There are many non-wheat grains, including buckwheat, quinoa, barley, brown rice, cornmeal, and rye. Since different grains contain different nutrients, one should attempt to eat a wide range of them. As for breakfast cereals, select whole-grain varieties with not more than 5 or 6 grams of sugar per serving. To sweeten the cereal, add fresh fruit, corresponding to blueberries.

When it involves fruit, Wolfson says to decide on fresh or frozen fruit if possible, for more dietary value. Dried fruit is an option, but don't overdo it since it's often high in sugar.

A healthy weight-reduction plan also needs to include legumes corresponding to kidney beans, black beans, chickpeas and hummus, lentils and natural peanut butter. Canned beans are easier to make use of than dry beans, but for those who buy the canned variety, wash the beans to remove excess salt, which may raise blood pressure.

For many within the audience, the take-home message was probably not latest: It's best to follow a weight-reduction plan wealthy in plant-based foods. It's not as exciting a message as “coffee can prevent prostate cancer,” but it should have big advantages in the long term.

Published on May 25, 2011.