The American Society for Cancer Research recommends that a majority of ahealthy diet should be composed of plant-based foods,with two-thirds ofeach meal being vegetables, fruits, whole grains or beans.The high levels offiber,vitamins,minerals and antioxidants in these foods helps fo improveimmunity and enhance physical health. Different colors 'of fruits andvegetables contain different kinds of unique phytochemicals (antioxidants),such as 3- carotene in orange and red fruits and vegetables, and resveratrolin blue and purple fruits and vegetables, which reduces cell oxygenation,helps with gene repair, reduces inflammation in the body, and thus reducesthe probability of cancer.It can also help slow the growth of cancer cells andcontrol the production of tumor hormones.

    The high fiber content and very low density of plant food also supports breasthealth by preventing excessive weight gain. Celulose from plants can slowdown the time needed for food to pass through the digestive system,increase your sense of fulness, and make people less likely to be hungry.

    Protein is also an important part of a healthy diet,and is essential tomaintaining the normal operation of human body and supporting theimmune system.High quality protein comes from meat, poultry, eggs, fish andseafood,'milk, beans, lentils,etc. You've probably heard that red meatincreases the risk of having colorectal cancer, pancreatic cancer, prostatecancer and breast cancer. The possible carcinogenic mechanism is thatcarcinogenic chemicals are produced during meat preservation processes(such as pickling and smoking). Meat also contains ferroheme,whichpromotes 'the production of carcinogens and increase the risk ofcarcinogenesis. Cooking meat under high temperature (such as frying,baking and barbecuing) also produce carcinogenic chemicals.The studyfound that the risk of developing hormone-related breast cancer is doubledamong women who consumed large amounts of red meat. Therecommended intake is no more than 500g cooked red meat per week. Theremaining protein needs can be obtained from a variety of other high-qualityproteins,such as chicken,duck,fish,,seafood,eggs,soybeans and soyproducts. ln addition,it is necessary to avoid processed meats,such assausage,bacon,preserved meat, ham, etc. , as they are high in salt andunhealthy saturated fatty acids.

    Nowadays, the internet is full of different advice for dieting, especially dietsfor breast health and breast cancer.These often contain misleadinginformation and food myths that can confuse people, keeping them frommaking the right food choices and having a healthy diet.

    Some common food myths:

    Q1.can breast cancer patients eat dairy products?

    Dairy products, including milk, cream, yogurt, cheese, etc., are good sourcesof protein , calcium and some vitamins.According to a report from the WorldCancer Research Foundation and the American Society for CancerResearch,there is no evidence that indicates dairy consumption increasesthe risk of breast cancer. Maintaining a healthy weight after treatmentreduces the risk of breast cancer recurrence, and some dairy products arehigh in fat and sugar, which contribute to weight gain. Dairy products withlow fat and less sugar are recommended.

    Q2.Cancer cels feed on sugar, so you shouldn't eat any sugary foods

    Sugar is one of the main energy sources for our body.People usually think ofwhite sugar, brown sugar , candies, chocolate, etc. as sugars. sugar also existsin more complicated forms in our diet.Carbohydrates are the colectivename for all different kinds of sugars.Cereals, potatoes, fruits, vegetables anddairy products are the main sources of carbohydrates. They are broken downinto simple sugars and used as energy by cells in our body.If all carbohydrateintake is restricted, the body breaks down muscle and fat tissue instead tomeet metabolic needs,resulting in malnutrition. At present,there is noevidence that indicates sugar infake is directly related to cancer.However,intake of added sugar can lead to weight gain, which increases the risk ofbreast cancer recurrence. So limiting foods and beverages with largequantities of added sugar is necessary, such as white sugar,brown sugar,candies,chocolate,cake, biscuits, soda, juice,etc.

    3.Patients with breast or ovarian cancer shouldn't eat any soy products,because plant hormones stimulate the proliferation of breast cancer cells

    Soybean contains a phytochemical caled isoflavone, which has anti-cancerand anti-oxidation effects. It is also called phytoestrogen because itschemical structure is similar to that of estrogen. The concentration ofisoflavones in natural soybean and soy food is not high. And weakestrogen-ike effects of isoflavone are not enough to change the estrogenlevels in your body. The current evidence shows that it is safe to havemoderate amounts of soy-based food in our diet, but concentrated soybeansupplements should be avoided.Choose non-genetically modified soybeansand soy products, as pesticides are commonly used on genetically modifiedproducts,which increases the risk of cancer. lsoflavone supplements areusually used to relieve menopause symptoms.These are not recommendedfor breast cancer patients, because there is insufficient scientific evidence toverify its safety.

    How to maintain breast health and reduce the risk of breast cancer?

    1.Plant food based diet, more fruits, vegetables and high quality protein

    2.Maintain a healthy weight

    3.Exercise at least 150 minutes every week

    4.Quit smoking and limit alcohol intake




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