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March 12, 2009
Should I Be on a Special Diet?
Your diet is an important part of recovery from cancer and should be chosen with care. The healing process continues for weeks to months after treatment is completed. Your diet provides the resources your body needs to promote healing. When your body is repairing damaged tissues and clearing toxic substances, there is an increased requirement for
Sometimes additional dietary specifications are required to deal with
• constipation or diarrhea
• drug interactions with dietary substances
• heart or kidney problems
If I Was on a Low-Cholesterol Diet before I Was Diagnosed with Cancer, Should I Resume It?
After cancer treatment is completed, the top priority in choosing your diet is selecting foods that will promote recovery from your cancer and the cancer treatment.
Fat-restricted diets have a long-term goal of decreasing the risk of hardening of the arteries in people at risk. Before you are concerned about long-term goals, you need to focus on the immediate task of recovery. Letting your cholesterol be too high for a few months will have less impact on your overall health and your life than not getting adequate nutrition for healing after cancer treatment.
If you were on a low-cholesterol diet before your cancer, have your cholesterol profile rechecked. If your doctor feels that your test results indicate that you still need to modify your intake of fat, this can be done as long as your weight is not too low and your diet provides adequate fat-soluble vitamins.
Is Low Cholesterol Associated with an Increased Risk of Cancer?
Some studies suggest that extremely low blood levels of cholesterol are associated with an increased risk of certain cancers. This is preliminary information. It may be a statistical association with no cause-and-effect relationship. Or it may be that the cancer causes the extremely low cholesterol.
If you have low cholesterol, do not try to raise it in hopes of decreasing your cancer risk. There are no data to indicate that raising your cholesterol has a beneficial effect on cancer risk.
If you have high cholesterol, the long-term benefits to your health of lowering it to a normal level outweigh any potential risks.
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