Does Eating Well matter to me now?
Of all the Healing Practices, Eating Well tends to be the one that most people with cancer choose to add to their conventional cancer care.
You might make Eating Well a priority in your cancer care if you:
- Are drawn to this practice for whatever reason—it makes sense to you. Trust your intuition.
- Have a cancer that is strongly linked to diet—for which diet contributes to cancer growth, or diet is linked to improved outcomes, or both. See What does the evidence show for a list of cancers connected to diet.
- Have a metabolic imbalance or disease, such as insulin resistance, diabetes or obesity, all of which are linked to cancer. Your diet might improve these conditions and make your body environment—your terrainthe internal conditions of your body, including nutritional status, fitness, blood sugar balance, hormone balance, inflammation and more—less supportive of cancer.
- Love to cook and/or eat—or you have family or friends who love to cook and will cook for you—and the idea of preparing and eating delicious, health-supportive food is appetizing.
A diet that provides benefits to you may not be the same as the one that benefits a friend or family member. And your ideal diet may change over time, varying considerably during treatment compared to after treatment, for instance. We encourage you to listen carefully to both your oncology team and your body in making food choices.
Bonnie Gintis, DO: Shortly after being diagnosed with metastatic breast cancer in 2009, I had the sense that I needed to stop eating animal fat and protein. I became a vegan and remained so for about four years. I began to recover from the ravages of cancer during that time. One day I felt the imperative to eat a lamb chop. I would not have trusted a craving for ice cream, but feeling like I needed a lamb chop or that I would die seemed like an important message to follow. I ate the lamb chop and felt as if it entered my cells and created a huge surge of energy. It was clear that it was time to change my diet, which has continued to change and evolve as 12 years of living with metastatic breast cancer has allowed me to thrive.
Other stories from our cancer community of people who made Eating Well part of their lifestyle.