You have cancer!
Your whole life just got turned upside down.
All your plans, your worries, your “To-Do” list, just got shoved to the back-burner.
Dealing with cancer is all that matters now. Meeting with doctors, running tests, deciding on a treatment plan, figuring out how you’re going to manage work, telling your family, your friends...
Plus the worry about side effects! Cancer treatment side effects are some of the hardest parts of being a cancer patient.
In all my years as a practitioner, I believe that a cancer diagnosis is one of the scariest life changing experiences we can have… for ourselves and our loved ones.
And it can be a lonely journey, that only those who’ve been through it can fully understand.
From the moment you hear that diagnosis, you are on a cancer recovery journey. And in my opinion, the most powerful first step you can take is to optimize your DIET.
That is where I come in. I’m Dionne Detraz, RDN, CSO and it is my passion to help people just like you optimize their cancer recovery with healing, medicinal foods. To apply strategies that will enhance treatment while maintaining energy and strength so you can keep enjoying life, going to work, and gathering with friends, in addition to treating your cancer. And most importantly to help you uncover and address the underlying causes of your cancer so you can take steps to significantly reduce the chance of dealing with a recurrence.
Keep reading and I’ll show you exactly what to do (and not do) to help your body recover from cancer.
This is the most common mistake I see in the cancer patients I’ve worked with. It’s not their fault. Most traditionally trained oncologists and nurses tell them this exact thing:
“Eat whatever you want, now is not the time to worry about your diet.”
Or “ Just eat whatever sounds good, the most important thing is to keep your weight stable.”
This advice couldn’t be farther from the truth. If there was ever a time to care about the food being put in your body, NOW is it!
The foods you choose, can either help or hurt you in the process of healing. Some foods actually work against your goals of recovery while others will enhance your body’s innate healing ability.
First, let me say, that anti-nausea, anti-inflammatory, pain, and sleep medications can all be helpful in managing the side effects of cancer treatment.
What I’ve learned though over the years of working with people is that by adding very specific tried-and-true strategies, in addition to the traditional medications, we can easily help someone move from feeling “so-so” to feeling “surprisingly good”!
To have the energy to keep working, taking care of their family, and gathering with friends. To be able to keep up with their kids and go on vacation and essentially live their life.
Cancer treatment becomes ONE of the things they are doing but not the only thing. It frees up their energy and time to focus on the other wonderful parts of life.
The temptation to find the “magic bullet” is real! I totally understand this. Especially if you don’t want to follow a traditional course of treatment and are looking for alternatives.
Once you head down that rabbit hole it’s really hard to know which way to go and which “cure” to follow. They all sound like the right one. They generally have very convincing testimonials and articles to go with them, which of course makes you feel like you should go for it!
And in all honesty, many of these practices and remedies CAN be helpful.
BUT here’s the truth...there is no supplement, diet, juice fast, or lifestyle practice alone, which will be enough to cure your cancer.
It will always take a holistic (whole life) approach, whether you’re choosing alternative & natural treatment options OR conventional approaches.
I also see the opposite to the above scenario play out in many of the people I’ve worked with. Not knowing which strategy, plan, or supplement to focus on, they bring in everything!
They switch to a raw diet, add the alkaline water and veggie juices, plus every other supplement, tea, or remedy their well-meaning friends and family members suggest.
Perhaps they are also doing the recommended chemotherapy or radiation and not understanding why they feel so horrible?
There is a time and a place for different remedies, for cleansing, and for building. But when you overwhelm your body with everything at once you may in fact be making it harder for your body to heal.
First, you must remove the foods that are sabotaging your goal of recovery.
These are the foods that create a desirable environment in your body for cancer to grow and thrive. These foods literally feed your cancer cells and keep them multiplying.
They promote inflammation, they are toxic to your immune system, they interfere with detoxification, they irritate digestion, and some of them even create cancer cells in your body.
They include….SUGAR…..REFINED CARBS…...PROCESSED MEATS…….BAD FATS!!
If you haven’t yet downloaded your FREE copy of “The 4 Most Toxic Foods To Avoid During Cancer Recovery”, I encourage you to start there.
This guide will explain why these 4 foods are so harmful plus provide some easy & practical ideas of what you can choose instead.
There are times when it actually makes sense to NOT eat!
Yes, your immune system needs to be nourished to function in an optimal way. But did you also know that when you fast you activate the immune system, initiate cellular repair, lower inflammation in the body, and change gene expression? All factors important in cancer recovery and prevention!
This can be particularly helpful when timed around chemotherapy. Studies have suggested that fasting before, during, and after chemotherapy can help make cancer cells more vulnerable to the chemotherapy while actually protecting healthy cells and thereby minimizing side effects!! Win-win!
Your immune system is your primary defensive path against cancer. When you take steps to boost the power of your immune system, you help your body target and remove cancer cells more efficiently.
The only time I don’t recommend fasting is when someone is already very ill, underweight, and malnourished. In this scenario, fasting could provide more harm than good.
I don’t believe that we get cancer because of “bad luck” or “bad genes”.
In my experience, there is always something underlying the cancer. Something (or many things) that over time created an environment where cancer cells could grow and multiply.
Unless we uncover these “causes” and take steps to address these…..in addition to treating the cancer…..we can’t assure that the cancer won’t just come back. Which unfortunately is often what happens.
There are 3 critical systems in your body that are directly involved in both the development of cancer and the recovery & prevention of cancer.
Regardless of what treatment plan you choose, supporting & optimizing the function of these 3 Systems is essential for a complete recovery to occur.
You CAN help your body heal from cancer! I firmly believe this with all my heart.
Cancer is the result of something else happening under the radar. Something (or a series of things) that have been imbalanced and unattended to, likely for years.
The good news is…...when you dive deeper, you begin to remedy these imbalances, and you start using your food as medicine, your body CAN heal!
I know you’re anxious. I know you’re scared. And I know you’re overwhelmed.
I can help you begin to change the environment that allowed the cancer to grow in the first place. I can show you which foods will have the biggest impact on your healing. I can guide you towards a plan that will optimize your 3 Systems of Cancer Recovery, support you through treatment, and help you prevent the cancer from returning.
If you’re ready to start designing your ideal Cancer Recovery Plan, the first step is to book a FREE Planning Session where we will review your diet, your lifestyle, and your cancer treatment plan and begin to map out your best recovery strategy.
If you’re ready to stop searching for answers on your own and gain the support & guidance of a trusted professional, click the link below to book your planning session with me today.
I look forward to supporting you on this journey,
Dionne Detraz, RDN, CSO is an Integrative Cancer Dietitian. She is passionate about helping her clients optimize their cancer recovery using the power of food. With so much conflicting dietary information out there pertaining to cancer, Dionne is able to cut through the noise to determine what actually works and what ultimately will work best for each individual client.
I found Dionne’s website when I was searching for meal planning for my husband. He was recently diagnosed with cancer, and I was very confused with how to go about selecting foods with the myriad of eating plans out there. (ketogenic, macrobiotic, paleo, Zone, anti-cancer, whole foods, raw food, etc.) It was becoming overwhelming, and my husband was losing weight, not quite sure knowing what or what not to eat. Dionne’s meal planning is simple, straightforward, and takes the guesswork out of what to eat. Her meal plans combine the best of those out there, is balanced, and takes into account anti-inflammatory principles so important for cancer. Plus it’s working! My husband's weight has stabilized, and he looks forward to eating with the varied selections available.
I was diagnosed with breast cancer in April 2016. Luckily it was a non-metastasized cancer. So I only had to go through surgery to remove the tumor. No chemotherapy, no radiation. But I was advised to take an estrogen-blocking drug that I did not want to take because, among many side effects, it would aggravate my already existing osteoporosis. I learned that UCSF is working with a center for integrative medicine. There, nutrition plays a big part of the treatment and I was given some important advice: eliminate sugar and greasy food, and eat a lot of phytoestrogens. But after a few months of this strict diet, I felt that I was losing too much weight and I was weak. I needed to speak to a nutritionist. I was then advised to contact Dionne who was living in France. We met on Skype: she explained that I did not eat enough proteins and helped me modify slightly my diet. The result was immediate: I gained enough weight to feel strong and she had reassured me. Dionne is a very warm and caring person. I felt very comfortable with her. She is very knowledgeable in the area that is so important for me right now. She has great recipes on her blog and keeps in touch with me regularly. I can count on her!
My name is Anand Dhruva, MD. I am an Integrative Oncologist and Ayurvedic Practitioner at UCSF Osher Center and have been in practice for almost 20 years. Nutrition is a critical component to Ayurvedic medicine and to the work that I do in Oncology. Although I can tell patients what I would like them to do with their diet it is difficult for me to find the time to provide the follow-up they need to be successful. By referring to Dionne I know that my patients will get outstanding advice from her on how to implement dietary recommendations. Our shared patients routinely tell me how much they like working with Dionne, how supportive she is, and what great ideas she has about diet plans and implementing dietary strategies. Without hesitation, I would recommend adding Dionne to your health care team.