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Nutrition For Multiple Myeloma Patients

Posted on August 11 2010 by Pat Killingsworth | 19,613 views

This is the one of the first articles about nutrition and multiple myeloma I have ever found!  I usually post nutritional related topics on our other site, http://www.helpwithcancer.org/.  But since this article was myeloma specific, I decided to run it here:

Myeloma Cancer Diet

By Priya Johnson – Published: 8/10/2010 – Buzzle.com
While there is no specific myeloma cancer diet that is outlined for myeloma cancer treatment, there are certain foods which when consumed help strengthen the body overall, so as to fight cancer.
 
Multiple myeloma, also known as Kahler’s disease is a blood disorder or cancer of the blood plasma cells. This type of cancer is the second most common cancer affecting blood. In this disorder, the plasma cells produce excess amounts of antibodies. Multiple myeloma cancer causes debilitation of the bone marrow and the immune system, thereby increasing the vulnerability of the body to various infections. It also conduces to bone damage and kidney damage. While a specific diet cannot help treat cancer, it can help optimize one’s body condition to increase the odds of conquering cancer. There is no specific myeloma cancer diet, however, a general cancer diet is outlined which can help reduce the severity of the cancer.

Multiple Myeloma Cancer Diet
There is no particular multiple myeloma diet that is prescribed for myeloma cancer patients, as there is no evidence that a change of diet can help treat myeloma. However, myeloma patients are advised to consume a healthy meal. A multiple myeloma patient diet should comprise mainly fresh fruits and vegetables. Eating 5 or more servings of fruits and vegetables each day is recommended for myeloma patients, because fruits and vegetables contain substances that can increase myeloma cancer life expectancy by increasing overall health.

Whole-wheat bread and cereals are also high in fiber content and should be consumed because they contain phytochemicals which can debilitate cancer-causing cells. Calcium enriched foods and vitamin D rich foods should also be consumed because myeloma causes the bones to weaken and result in bone fractures. Moreover, vitamin D and calcium helps strengthen the bones. Vitamin D also helps boost immune system.

Foods high in unsaturated fats such as nuts, avocado, olive oil, etc. can be consumed in limited amounts. Since myeloma cancer treatments cause one’s stomach to feel really sick, consuming a bland diet is advised to prevent further aggravation. Fried and spicy foods can aggravate various problems in an already tender stomach. Drinking lots of fluids is also recommended to prevent dehydration.

Multiple myeloma patient diet should be devoid of refined sugars or white flour, as far as possible, because carbohydrates aggravate the condition. Moreover, canned foods, pre-packaged and processed foods should be avoided. Red meats and fatty foods high in saturated fats should also be avoided. The protein intake will also have to be monitored, because myeloma cancer causes one’s kidney to weaken and loading the kidney with too much protein will not be a good idea. The limit on protein intake will be told by the doctor treating you.

Diet for Multiple Myeloma Cancer Prevention
Although extensive research is being carried out with regards to foods that can lower or increase risks of cancer, researchers have not been able to narrow down on foods that can lower the risk of myeloma cancer. However, researchers believe that consuming certain anti-cancerous foods can help protect a person from contracting the disease. After conducting various surveys, researchers found that consuming certain foods can probably lower the risk of myeloma cancer. These foods are as follows:

•Brussels sprouts
•Broccoli
•Fresh fish
•Vitamin A rich foods
•Cooked toatoes
•Food high in vitamin D
•Calcium rich foods


One should choose whole grains instead of processed grains. Alcohol intake should also be limited to one drink a day. One crucial factor that all of us should consider, is consuming a healthy diet. One should control weight gain as obesity increases the risk of contracting cancer. To lower the risk of getting myeloma cancer, one should also combine healthy diet with moderate exercise.

While not much is known about the link between multiple myeloma cancer and diet, it is important to consume a well-balanced and healthy meal. A myeloma cancer diet should be high in fiber, lean protein and adequate calcium and vitamin D. This will help strengthen the body to fight cancer.
 
Good, basic nutritional advice!  A key statement is the concluding one:  “This will help strengthen the body to fight cancer.”  The author could have/should have said:  “This will help strenghten the body to help withstand years and years of anti-myeloma chemotherapy.” 
Feel good and keep smiling!  Pat

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