Wednesday, March 15, 2006

Grazing on the alternative side of the fence

It's chemo week next week. That means this is a good week. I feel like a normal human being. Except for my medications - an industrial strength cough suppressant that keeps me from sounding like a dog, anti-ulcer medication that protects my tummy (from what - I'm not really sure. I really should ask my doc.), plus a glutathione supplement that should aid the chemo med target the cancer cells while protecting my normal cells.

I feel great. I do my 40-hour work week from home. I go out sometimes - to go to church, the grocery or cafe. The last couple of days the weather's been really nice and I'd take a peek outside and soak in some sun.

This week, I did a lot of research on good nutrition. I find that nutritional healing of cancer is actually considered 'Alternative Healing'. Early on, I asked my doc what I should eat to give my body the extra ooomph I need to battle this disease. She said, "Anything you feel like eating." She says that to all her cancer patients on chemo mostly because one of the side effects is loss of appetite and one of the worst things a cancer patient can do is loose weight. The only limitation she gave me is no raw food. Good-bye, sushi and oysters! I was raised on sushi so this is a big loss. Although given a choice between raw fish and the chance to live longer...

My next door neighbor, LH, hands me books on nutritional healing and alternative healing options for cancer. (Why she has these is her story to tell.) So, I comb through these books and notes she passed on to me. Here's what I've started to do.

Most basic - I need a lot of water. A lot! Sure, I can do 10 glasses of water a day. Even my doc told me that. It'll protect my kidneys from damage of toxins of the chemo.

Most obvious - Eat lots of fruits and vegetables. I need the anti-oxidants, vitamins and minerals. That's easy! Bring out the broccoli! Now, I need to eat a rainbow of colors and one member of each of the 7 vegetable families. (Beets and spinach are in the same family?) I'm eating so much fruit and veggies, I feel I don't have enough time in the day to finish all the veggies I need to eat. Thus, you'll find me grazing at all times of the day.

No refined sugar or flour. That means no baked goods. The processing of the sugar and flour renders them devoid of nutritional value. (Fine - I don't think I have time to fit that in my schedule anyway.) (Okay! I still sneak in a piece of that heavenly chocolate YT sent! - Thanks, YT!)

Now I teeter over the alternative edge...

Go organic. Goodness... I'm not that rich. Organic veggies are 2x the price as conventional. Organic meats are at least 3x more expensive. So, I buy organic when it's on sale. Organic is better for me because there are no pesticides and growth hormones. But let's be reasonable, my family needs to eat too...

6 cups of green tea a day. Either that or pop a pill. I don't need another pill to pop so chug-a-lug. This is on top of my 10 glasses of water so you can imagine I'm running to the potty every so often. Green tea contains catechin, a flavonoid that inhibits tumor growth.

I have to keep my pH balance as alkaline as possible. It's a more harsh environment for the cancer. That means most fruits and veggies. (Curiously, citrus fruits are acidic but they make your body alkaline.) Protien makes you acidic but I still need that to keep my muscle so I minimize.

Fermented soy products like miso, natto and soy sauce have lots of good stuff in them. Best of which, for me, I think, are the isoflavinoids that stop cancer cells from proliferating and even may help in turning them back to normal (sounds incredible, but okay, good thing I'm asian and I'm used to eating that stuff).

Believe me, this is just the tip of the iceberg. There's so much other stuff that conflict it's enough to drive you nuts (of which, I can only eat Brazil nuts and almonds which I'm not too fond of).

I'm also looking at other supplements. I haven't started my research yet. I'll clue you in as soon as I do.

If you want recipies, my sources or whatever. Drop me a comment. Leave your e-mail and I'll remove your e-mail before I post your comment.

Happy grazing!

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