Can cancer patients eat soy?

Cancer Therapy: How Diet and Exercise Help

Status: 05/29/2018 2:39 p.m. | archive
An active ingredient in broccoli can fight certain cancer cells.

When diagnosed with cancer, most of those affected think of surgery, chemotherapy and radiation. However, supplementary, so-called complementary forms of treatment can also be used in therapy, for example natural healing methods, exercise and a certain diet. In fact, there is a whole range of complementary (supplementary) therapies that sensibly support conventional medical treatment and activate the body's self-healing powers.

Diet in cancer

The importance of nutrition in cancer has long been underestimated. In fact, it is one of the most important factors that determine how well an affected person can cope with the therapy and whether he or she will survive the disease. Because the tumor messes up the nutrient metabolism and disrupts weight regulation by producing its own messenger substances. These lower appetite and branch off nutrients for tumor growth: Sick people lose weight significantly and continue to lose weight during chemotherapy. In the worst case scenario, they will die of malnutrition.

According to studies, the diet must be adapted to the disease and the therapy so that this does not happen. Those affected not only have to eat enough, but also pay attention to micronutrients, minerals and vitamins such as vitamin D, selenium, iron, zinc, folic acid and the B vitamins.

Weight loss is often the first symptom of cancer. With a weight loss of more than ten percent within six months, those affected should start nutritional therapy.

How foods fight cancer

In the fight against cancer, complementary medicine can use numerous foods that inhibit the growth of tumors:

  • broccoli-Sprouts work against cancer stem cells according to a study in pancreatic cancer. The ingredient sulforaphane is probably responsible for this.
  • In the tomatoes contained lycopene protect against cancer.
  • Green tea has been shown to be effective against chronic lymphocytic leukemia (CLL) in studies. Green tea is also rich in polyphenols that neutralize cancer-causing free radicals.
  • soy and soy products like tofu and fatty fish such as salmon, mackerel and herring help prevent cancer. The connection is also believed to be the reason for the lower risk of cancer and the higher life expectancy of vegetarians and fish-eaters. In particular, the hormone-related forms of cancer prostate cancer and breast cancer are much less common in Asia. Much more soy is eaten there instead of meat.
  • A study on breast cancer showed that the Avoiding red meat together with a lot of exercise enables a significantly longer survival.
  • milk or Dairy products are not generally prohibited in cancer. However, the insulin-like growth factors (IGF) contained in cow's milk could be involved in the development of some types of cancer. If you have prostate cancer, you should avoid dairy products.
  • Also sugar Cancer sufferers should consume more sparingly, as the body reacts to sugar with increased insulin production and insulin promotes the growth of cancer cells.

Home remedies in complementary cancer therapy

Home remedies can help alleviate the side effects of cancer therapy:

  • constipation: Flea seeds, flax seeds, grated apple, boiled carrots
  • diarrhea: one yogurt daily
  • nausea: Ginger tea
  • Affected mucous membranes: Chamomile, sage and honey rinses, green tea

Complementary therapy only in consultation with the doctor

Natural remedies and anti-cancer foods are not helpful in every phase of cancer. They can also endanger the success of the therapy and should therefore only be used in consultation with a doctor. For example, mistletoe preparations and green tea are taboo during chemotherapy, as they impair their effectiveness. They should therefore only be taken between cycles of chemotherapy.

Movement Against Cancer

Cancer sufferers can improve their performance with sport. Numerous clinical studies have examined the effectiveness of exercise in cancer and have shown that physical activity can measurably reduce the side effects of chemotherapy or anti-hormonal therapy. Exercise also has a direct influence on the development of cancer, its course and the risk of relapse. It thus makes an important contribution to the prevention of cancer and relapses. Active people can reduce their cancer risk by 20 to 30 percent. If cancer does occur nonetheless, athletic people have a lower risk of relapse.

Exercise can alleviate side effects

Which training makes sense depends on the disease and the therapy. For example, swimming is taboo during chemotherapy. Prostate cancer sufferers often have hip problems after radiation therapy, which can be alleviated through targeted training. The typical side effects of many cancer therapies such as chronic fatigue, morning stiffness, joint problems and muscle problems can also be reduced through targeted exercises. Everyday exercise such as gardening, dancing and long walks give body and soul strength to fight cancer.

Proper nutrition in cancer

In the case of cancer, a balanced diet is important in order to avoid severe weight loss and to support therapy. What should cancer sufferers eat? more

Strengthening diet for cancer

There is no such thing as a cancer diet - diet cannot cure cancer: this has to be said clearly. But eating can have a palliative effect: that is, strengthening, for more energy and quality of life. more

Sport helps against cancer

Exercise has a direct influence on the development of cancer and can influence the course of cancer. It is important to note that the exercise must be fun. more

Interview partner

Prof. Dr. Jutta Hübner, senior physician, W2 professor for integrative oncology
Department of Hematology and Internal Oncology
Clinic for Internal Medicine II
Jena University Hospital
Am Klinikum 1, 07747 Jena

Dr. phil. Thorsten Schmidt M.A., Head of Sports and Exercise Therapy Support
Cancer Center North (CCC)
University Medical Center Schleswig-Holstein - Campus Kiel
Arnold-Heller-Strasse 3, 24105 Kiel
Tel. (0431) 500-18 205, Fax (0431) 500-18 204

Dr. Dietrich glasses, senior physician in charge
Clinic for Internal Medicine III
Hospital Südstadt Rostock
Südring 81, 18059 Rostock
Tel. (0381) 44 01-61 00, Fax (0381) 44 01-61 99

Prof. Dr. Nicolai Maass, director
Clinic for Gynecology and Obstetrics
University Medical Center Schleswig-Holstein - Campus Kiel
Arnold-Heller-Strasse 3, 24105 Kiel
Tel. (0431) 500-21 405, Fax Kiel: 0431 500-21 404

additional Information
KOKON - Competence Network Complementary Medicine in Oncology
c / o Nuremberg Hospital
Prof.-Ernst-Nathan-Strasse 1, 90340 Nuremberg
Tel. (0911) 398 20 06

German Cancer Aid Foundation
Buschstrasse 32, 53113 Bonn
Information and advice service (0800) 80 70 88 77 (Mon-Fri from 8 a.m. to 5 p.m.)
Free advice brochures "Exercise and Sport in Cancer" and "Nutrition in Cancer" can also be downloaded from the Internet:

Cancer information service of the German Cancer Research Institute
Tel. (0800) 420 30 40
Information, addresses and contacts for complementary oncology

Krakowski-Roosen H. Exercise and Cancer Prevention. The oncologist. 2017; 23: 438-45.
Lemanne D, Cassileth B, Gubili J. The role of physical activity in cancer prevention, treatment, recovery, and survivorship. Oncology. 2013; 27 (6): 580-5.

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