Okay, these weren’t the exact words used by my breast cancer nurse, but she did make a point of saying very early on ‘Don’t change your diet, you can eat all the same things and don’t listen to anyone who tells you any different’. This, presumably is what she says to each new patient diagnosed with Cancer. At the time I was so shell shocked by the actual diagnosis that I didn’t think anything of it, but I started to do my own research fairly quickly and soon found that diet is extremely important, probably THE most important thing when you are fighting this disease.
The ‘diet’ issue doesn’t go away when you are in NHS hospitals. In both the chemotherapy and clinic waiting rooms at the hospital there is a poster entitled ‘Diet Myths’. On this poster it says that there is no such thing as a superfood and that it is a marketing device to get your money. It also says that it is fine to eat sugar, Aspartame is ok (!), organic food is no better etc etc… Each time I visited the hospital it wound me up, so I put in an official complaint. I had a meeting with the head of cancer services and she said ‘I kind of agree with you, but for some people at late stages it really doesn’t matter what they eat’! My complaint is that if people are even considering changing to a healthier diet, this poster may put them off. What really annoys me is that although the medical establishment deny that sugar feeds cancer, when you have a CT scan they give you a glucose injection which goes straight to any cancerous cells in your body! Go figure!
After a lot of research I found that the best diet to follow if fighting cancer is a raw vegan diet. Sugar does, indeed, feed cancer, so it is better to avoid it. It IS better to eat organic fruit and vegetables (again, a no-brainer to me, lots of pesticides and chemicals cannot be great), and everyone already knows how bad aspartame and other artificial sweeteners are.
It is one thing for the NHS to not mention diet, but to my mind very irresponsible for them to try to dissuade you from having a healthier diet!
Another annoying aspect of a hospital visit is the food on offer, both in the Restaurant and also on the ward while you are having chemo. Cakes, biscuits, white bread are the staple of hospital food. I gave up dairy products soon after diagnosis, but they only have cows milk, so I wasn’t even able to have a cup of tea, let alone eat anything!
I have ranted a little here, but I really believe that the diet issue is so important and all my research backs this up…