So an important part of the life of any cancer patient who wants to try and aid their own healing has to be their diet. To add to the overuse of the following quote
“Let food be thy medicine and medicine be thy food” – Hippocrates
Whenever I see this quote I wonder at the use of “thy”. Clearly designed to give the quote a sense of age, ruined only slightly by the fact that Hippocrates was Greek and so this is therefore a translation and could use any age or English. But I digress.
A proper diet should boost your bodies ability to do what it is meant to do, i.e. keep you in good health. And that is where I feel my diet has been lacking. My reasons for believing this are based on the following observations,
- I was frequently gassy: Often after meals I would find myself gassy, and, dear reader, you will be thrilled to know that often it did not smell great.
- I have been having trouble putting on weight. Despite a large intake of calories I have often dropped weight. I do not necessarily mind being slimmer than others as I feel even our ideas of “normal” weight today are skewed towards over consumption, however it is my underutilisation of the calories I am consuming that makes me think that my digestive system (DS) is not coping optimally with my diet.
- During both of my fasts, when load was taken off my DS I have noticed improvements in both the tumor masses and the edema in my leg. I feel that I should be able to achieve a similar affect with a diet that stresses my DS less.
- I continue to this day to get abdominal cramps around my diaphragm. I have got these ever since my radiation treatment to my pancreas. I have come to suspect that this has something to do with a sub optimal diet as they often appear around the eating of certain foods.
- In October last year, right after I had relapsed, I tried a diet which, although not one I would repeat, had some interesting affects. It was a diet high in fat (natural fats such as flax oil, avocado and nuts) low in sugar (eliminating all fruits) and high in non starchy vegetables. This diet lead to some DS problems including bad abdominal pains. However on this diet I ate a lot of raw food in the form of avocado, nuts and salad. Looking back there were a lot of problems with this one, too much fat being only the start, however there was a definite improvement in my health. I suspect that it was due to either the low grain content, the low starchy vegetable content, the low sugar content, or the high raw food content. If I had to put my money on something I would go with the raw food and the grains.
Summising that you have a sub optimal diet is all well and good, but in order to improve things, a thorough and scientific test must be done (although it must be scientific I feel that the things tested should be chosen by your intuition.) So I have decided to use my post fast period in order to test out some ideas I have regarding what my diet should be.
The diet I have chosen to test first I can justify cognitively, but was chosen intuitively. I have decided to try a raw food diet for 2 weeks. This is based on the observations of my own body, and my assessment of what has been working for me.
I have decided to blog about this experience (indeed it was one of the factors that finally got me off my ass and in front of the computer) so that anybody else considering such a diet in a similar situation may benefit from my experience. I will be posting what I eat each day, my vital stats, urine pH, heart rate, body temp, general condition (I would do more but that is all I have the resources to measure) and pictures and recepies of the foods I make. As someone new to raw food I am pretty excited. At the end of the two weeks I will make a judgment call as to whether to continue for another two weeks or to start slowly introducing cooked foods and seeing the result.
I have the first week mapped out. It is fairly standard, an average of 30% callories from fat (avocados, flax oil, nuts) and a large amount of sugar from fruit and vegetables (an average of around 200g a day). Calorie intake is around 2200 a day is not restricted. After the first week I will either test, low fat, low sugar or low calorie depending on how I feel the first week went. I will be introducing all raw fruits and vegetables tomorrow, flax seeds and nuts the day after, avocado the day after that, and tahini the day after that.
So, may it be useful for somebody else someday, and hopefully me today (well I guess technicaly tomorrow). I the mean time I sit here drinking by carrot and beetroot juice, pondering the fact that it is a nice day and I am not out getting my vitamin D.
Absolutely here supporting you, and fascinated to hear how it all goes, the whole way! I particularly like your mention of the blend of the cognitive and the intuitive. And now I should probably get back to work…
Thanks Hannah. Looking forward to exploring more food with you in the future 🙂
I’ve enjoyed catching up on your news via your blog Jerome. I was actually munching on a rocket and chickpea salad at the time and feeling relieved that I was on solids!! I hope that you are having success negotiating with your DS acceptable fuel! I am finding that the better my diet is,the fussier my DS is to ‘crap’. I think that my brain is listening and is gradually finding it easier to say ‘No’ to temptations that used to taste delicious!!
Good to hear from you,
Love Betsy xx (March 5-day!)
Thanks Betty. I have been finding the same thing. The better your diet the more you realise what you can and can’t eat. This is a big one for me as 6 months ago I don’t think I had that ability. Now, for better or worse, I seem to have it in spades 😛 . Rocket and Chickpea sounds amazing. I have a garden burger planned for Friday which I am going to make some raw Hummus for. It will be interesting making it without cooking but I am excited to find out how it goes.
Thanks again for the comment, Being new to this blogging thing its great to hear from you all 🙂