Living with Breast Cancer: Making Healthy Diet Choices
Most people know the importance of a well-balanced diet and regular exercise, but it can be challenging to always follow the best advice. Still, keeping a healthy weight and eating nutritious foods can help prevent illness and injury and improve your mood.
Studies show that eating a plant-based, whole-foods diet, maintaining a healthy weight, and exercising at least 30 minutes every day lowers the chance of breast cancer coming back in early-stage disease. This kind of healthy lifestyle may also increase survival time.
Your treatment center may have registered dietitians to help you develop meal plans that meet your nutritional needs. Whether you use a registered dietitian or not, try to include healthy whole grains and legumes, like beans, in your diet for protein. Plant-based diets that include little or no meat also help. Avoid processed foods and fast foods because they tend to have high sugar, salt and fat, and fewer nutrients.
Here are some tips for healthy eating from Breast Reconstruction Associates, your breast reconstruction surgery experts:
If you plan your meals ahead of time, you can find simple ways to make them healthier or less expensive. To make your dollar go farther, rice and pasta are less expensive grains that go with a variety of different meals. For protein many people think of meat, but eggs and beans are also good sources of protein and are cheaper than most cuts of meat.
If you are looking for healthier options, there are simple ways to make your shopping list healthier at your local grocery store.
– Use cuts of meat or ground beef that are at least 90 percent lean.
– When buying canned vegetables or soups, choose one that says “low sodium.”
– Many common grain products can be bought as whole grains: brown rice, bread, even pasta comes in whole grain.
– Shop the front, back and side aisles of your store; these are typically where the whole, fresh foods and healthier items are.
It’s important to remember that you should do what you can to build a better diet, but you should focus on coping with treatment and its side effects first. Keep in mind these tips on how to shop for healthy foods and prepare them when you are dealing with side effects of breast cancer treatment. Small changes can make a difference, so don’t be discouraged if you can’t do everything right now. Questions? Feel free to get in touch with us at Breast Reconstruction Associates, your breast reconstruction surgery specialists.