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5 in REASONS FOOD

5 in REASONS FOOD MATTERS Cancer Treatment and Survivorship 1 2 3 4 5 A healthy diet is the foundation for surviving and thriving. The right nutrients can strengthen our immune system. Cancer is promoted by inflammation. We can lower inflammation through diet. For many cancers, diet can have a direct anti-cancer effect. Oncologists don’t treat late effects. Proper nutrition can help. REASON NO 1 A healthy diet is the foundation for surviving and thriving. l The foods we eat everyday create an overall environment in our bodies. While an anticancer diet alone is not curative, it can make our body more or less favorable to cancer, and more or less favorable to a healthy recovery from cancer treatment. l No diet has ever been shown to completely cure or prevent cancer. But many high-profile, peerreviewed studies show that the right dietary strategies lead to lower cancer rates, better quality of life while in cancer treatment, and a longer survival time. 1 l Most researchers believe that an overall healthy diet works on so many different parts of the body and in so many different ways, that it is easiest to talk about creating a healthy overall bodily environment, rather than about how a diet can have a single, specific effect. 2 MAXLOVE PROJECT | Fierce Foods: A Guide for Families & Their SuperKids

FIERCE FOODS REASON NO 2 The right nutrients can strengthen our immune system. l While there are sometimes good reasons to depress the body's immune system (as in bone marrow transplants or auto-immune diseases) the immune system plays a key role in healing from cancer. As a group of researchers stated in a recent study: The strength of the immune system is “the strongest prognostic factor for [cancer] recurrence and overall survival.” 2 l The immune system is a complex system of organs, tissues, cells, and cell products that fight substances harmful to the body. It’s not fully understood, but we do know that stress, exercise, sleep, and diet influence it in powerful ways. l Diet not only boosts the immune system, with foods like slow-cooked broths, mushrooms, broccoli, berries, but diet can also suppress the immune system, with things like sugar, refined carbohydrates, and highly processed foods. REASON NO 3 Cancer is promoted by inflammation in the body. We can lower inflammation through diet. l Inflammation is the body’s natural immune response to damage (shocks, cuts, burns, poisons, infections, etc.). But it is now widely accepted that inflammation plays a large role in cancer growth, “including initiation, promotion, malignant conversion, invasion, and metastasis.” 3 l Diet can affect inflammation in the body. Sugar, refined carbohydrates, and too much omega-6 fat from grains and vegetable oils can contribute to inflammation. l Most whole foods are anti-inflammatory: cold-water fish (wild salmon, cod, halibut, haddock, chunk light tuna), grass-fed beef and dairy, organic omega-3 eggs, dark leafy greens, berries, sugar-free chocolate. l Specific plant extracts are strongly anti-inflammatory: turmeric (curcumin), green tea extract, quercetin, and resveratrol. www.maxloveproject.org Fierce Foods: A Guide for Families & Their SuperKids | MAXLOVE PROJECT 3

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