Healthy eating is important, and that’s especially true when it comes to fighting cancer. Beth Beckett, certified oncology dietitian with the Community Cancer Center, says healthy food choices can help you feel better before, during and after treatment.
“Eating the right foods can relieve side effects and help with the healing process,” explains Beckett. She notes that it’s very common for cancer patients to experience a loss of appetite. Cancer treatment can also lead to changes in the sense of taste, as well as nausea, constipation, diarrhea or dry mouth. Beckett says the dietitians at the Community Cancer Center work with patients to help them get the nutrients they need for repair and healing.
“Cancer-fighting foods include dark green leafy vegetables, orange vegetables like carrots and sweet potatoes, and foods with high anti-oxidant properties like beans and berries,” says Beckett. Other cancer-fighting foods include tomatoes, onions and garlic, as well as salmon and other fish with high omega-3 content.
The dietitians at the Community Cancer Center have collected their most popular recipes for healthy eating and posted them on the center’s website. While chosen for the special needs of cancer patients, the recipes are ideal for anyone who is interested in healthy eating.
Beckett notes the recipes are often plant-based and feature cancer-fighting ingredients, adding, “We rely on guidelines from the American Institute for Cancer Research.” The dietitians also choose recipes with ease of preparation in mind. “We want to make it easy for you to eat healthy,” explains Beckett. “That means fewer ingredients and simple steps.” She notes that Spice Grilled Salmon, which uses only five ingredients and can be prepared in minutes, is one of their most popular dishes.
At the same time, Beckett adds, “We encourage people to step outside their comfort zone and try vegetables they don’t usually eat,” like the kale-apple salad featured on the website.
For delicious, healthy recipes, visit communitycancercenter.org/wellness/recipes.