I learned on this journey that emotional feelings during cancer can affect my appetite and cause eating problems. Appetite loss, smell changes, weight loss or weight gain are just a few of them. People battling cancer also have different diet needs. For most people, a healthy diet includes lots of fruits, veggies, and whole grain breads/cereals; a modest amount of meats/dairy products; and small amount of fats. When I was battling cancer, doctors wanted me to keep my strength up to manage the side effects of cancer treatment. This also meant adding extra protein and calories to my meals. Sometimes, I experienced an appetite loss or nausea because of concerns of fighting cancer and treatment. However, staying the course and doing as the doctors ordered, the process began a lot easier to bear. Eating was challenging but also what to eat played a part of that challenge. I didn't want to eat out, didn't want certain meats or foods, and was terrified to eat sweets (because of the headaches it caused). I began looking up recipes for foods I actually could eat and tolerate. It was in that decision that I began cooking meals that were suitable to my needs and my comfort in this journey. Although I'm on the other side of this journey, friends and loved ones still have difficulty accepting the changes I have made, but I continue to do what works best for me. Everyone's needs are different, in their journey and in order to make the most of my situation, I began to make healthier meals that would not only make me smile but full at the same time. :)
Below are some dishes that I have tried and eaten after my cancer journey. Since I still dislike certain foods and don't eat out at various places, I have found a new enjoyment of cooking in the comfort of my home. I am not a vegan or vegetarian at the moment. I am just enjoying life thereafter cancer and if I can further enhance my body's response to cancer by eating better, than I am willing to make the change.
I have learned to seek God for my meal plan. He gives me the guidance to healthier style of eating. I do treat myself from time to time. But I do know my triggers of dairy and gluten, I also continue to accept my changes of eating (lack of snacking, sweets, etc.) I am sure to take my supplements daily, drink 1/2 my body weight in water, and minimize stress. There are some people who chose to focus on dieting based on their blood type, health issues, and etc. My doctors stated I had no specific plan to follow. So for now, for my journey, I am embracing what meals are tolerable for me.
Genetics and metabolism are some of the factors in which affect our body. I have found techniques such as meal prepping and creating my own set of guidelines to be helpful. I follow those plans when making choices surrounding food. There are imperative areas in which I drew my attention to in this journey: maintaining a healthy eating balance , re-evaluating my current eating habits, maintaining healthy habits after surgery, nutrition before and after cancer, and finding what works for me.