Nutritionally Speaking

Once you’ve absorbed the shock of your diagnosis, the next step is to rise above it into a state of action.  In order to do that, you have to think in terms of action.  It’s important to dwell on what you can do to overcome the odds.  The key is to continue to think of yourself as a healthy person with a temporary illness.  It doesn’t matter if the illness is classified as chronic or incurable, what matters is how you think of yourself.  If you think along the lines of overcoming a challenge and the steps associated with that then you’re well on your way to living a life of joy.

Joy will come in the form of an inner knowing that you can do everything in your power to live with dignity and quality for as long as the good Lord allows.  No one has total control over their life, that’s left to a much higher power!  However, you can take charge of your life while you have it to live.  You can become proactive in your quest to live a good quality life.

So, what are some of the things you can do?  First of all, on the nutrition side, you can eliminate most sugars from your diet, especially white processed sugar and high fructose corn syrup.  These two products are stripped of any nutritional value in the processing and cause your glycemic index to soar.  When your glycemic index rises, the blood sugar level in your body rises causing your body to produce more insulin.  Cancer feeds off of sugar.  Yes, doctors will tell you that all cells in your body feed off of sugar.  However, your body only needs sugar, i.e. glucose from healthy foods that turn into glucose when digested but do not cause an excessive rise in your blood sugar level.  This rise in insulin and blood sugar is what excites cancer cells.  Hence, any sugar that causes a spike in blood sugar should be avoided.

The one sweetener that seems to be agreed upon by most every nutritionist and naturopath I’ve ever researched is Stevia.  All seem to agree that Stevia is a natural sweetener made from the stevia plant and is normally processed in such a manner that it’s not stripped of any nutrients.  Yet, for many of us, it leaves an after taste.  Another alternative is Agave Nectar.  However, depending on what article or study you read, Agave is sometimes thought to be not much better than high fructose corn syrup.  That's because some agave syrups are processed at high temperatures for an extended period of time, resulting in a product with a high fructose level.  Yet, many alternative practitioners believe Agave is a good substitute for sugar.  The key here is to try to determine how the product is processed.  If it claims to have a very low glycemic index, then the logical conclusion is that it does not contain a high fructose level since high fructose spikes blood sugar levels.

Another sweetener that many alternative practitioners advocate is Xylitol.  For those with a sensitivity to this product an excessive amount may cause diarrhea or loose stools.  However, this is not a standard reaction, just one to note for some.  Also, if you use this sweetener, you should purchase Xylitol made from the Birch tree.  Xylitol is also made from corn and that process is not as healthy for you, especially since almost all corn grown is this country is genetically modified.  Xylitol tastes more like sugar, has a very low glycemic index (7, as compared to 100 for regular sugar) and has 40% fewer calories than sugar.

In addition to using the above sweeteners, you should read the labels of every product you buy because sugar or high fructose corn syrup is in almost everything!  Some producers are starting to understand this and are now using alternative sweeteners like Stevia or Xylitol.  The important thing is to become more conscientious when shopping.  You have to become a chronic label reader.  The less unhealthy sugar in your body, the better off you are.  Cancer does love sugar so you don’t want to use it in excess.  Do not be afraid to question your physicians when they claim your body needs sugar.  Yes it does but only healthy sugars and not in excessive quantities!!

One comment

  1. Bonnie says:

    Wow Kathy,

    Thanks for this..interesting read and very useful!

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