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Frequently Asked Questions

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Diana Dyer, MS, RD

 

Search Cancer RD Site

"Your Web site is an inspiration to those of us getting conflicting nutrition information for cancer survivors. I will be sharing your information for cancer survivors with everyone in my support group."

M., Cancer Survivor, San Jacinto, CA

 "Your answers to these questions are both easy to
read and complete, without leaving anything out.
Thanks for sharing your research. "

Mandy Robbie, Dundee, Scotland

 
  
 


These are categories of some of the most frequently asked questions that I receive at my speaking presentations or from visitors to this website. Click on a category to see individual questions.

All of these Q&A's have been written by Diana Dyer, MS, RD since 1998. Beginning in 2012, the 50 Q&A's that are viewed most frequently will be reviewed and updated with new information (if needed) by oncology dietitians who are members of the Oncology Nutrition Dietetic Practice Group (ON DPG) of the American Dietetic Association (to be renamed The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics). After updating, each Q&A will be linked to the ON DPG website at www.ondpg.org.

All answers posted on this web site provide general information only, not individualized advice. Diana has no financial relationship with any food or dietary supplement company, and the mention of any product does not constitute an endorsement.

Bladder Cancer Why doesn't my cancer center have a Registered Dietitian? (this is
the #1 question I receive from patients and health care professionals
alike!)
posted 8/03, updated 10/03, 5/05

New Cancer Diagnosis

New Cancer Diagnosis I have just been diagnosed with cancer. What steps do you suggest I take? posted 9/00
New Cancer Diagnosis I have just discovered a lump in my breast. Do you have any pearls of wisdom to help me during this difficult time? posted 8/02
New Cancer Diagnosis I have read everything in your book and on your web page. I want to do everything you suggest, but I am so overwhelmed. How do I start on this cancer recovery journey?
New Cancer Diagnosis I have just been diagnosed with cancer. How do I organize all the information I am receiving? posted 3/03
New Cancer Diagnosis What treatments should I choose? posted 3/03

Bladder Cancer

Bladder Cancer I am being treated for bladder cancer. I have heard that vitamins that might help me reduce my risk of recurrence. Do you know anything about this? posted 8/02 , updated 11/05

Breast Cancer

Breast Cancer Is soy safe to consume for women with ER+ breast cancer? posted 4/01, udpated 1/05, updated 2/06
Breast Cancer Is there any new information for breast cancer patients who have ER+ tumors regarding the safety of eating soy foods? posted 2/02, updated 2/06
Breast Cancer I am currently taking Tamoxifen. My daughter heard on TV that I should be eating soy to make it work more efficiently. Do you know of any studies verifying this information? posted 5/01, updated 1/05
Breast Cancer I have read conflicting reports on the benefits vs. the dangers of Tamoxifen for breast cancer treatment. Have you found better nutritional alternatives?
Breast Cancer Should women with ER+ breast cancer avoid flaxseeds and flax oil that contain the phytoestrogens called lignans?
Breast Cancer Is weight gain common during breast cancer treatments? posted 8/00
Flaxseeds

Does consuming flaxseeds potentially interfere with the anti-estrogen effect of Tamoxifen? posted 9/03, updated 3/05

What are some good breast cancer web sites? posted 4/04

Are there any foods I should avoid while taking Tamoxifen? posted 6/04

Does moderate alcohol consumption have a harmful effect on persons who have had breast cancer? posted 11/04
Should I be avoiding all caffeine to help fight my breast cancer?
posted 11/04
Is vitamin E potentially helpful or harmful for breast cancer survivors? posted 3/06

Carcinoid Cancer

Bladder Cancer My mother has carcinoid tumors in the liver. Can you suggest foods that won't provoke the diarrhea associated with carcinoid syndrome? posted 3/03
Bladder Cancer Should I be following a low-residue diet after G-I surgery for carcinoid cancer? posted 7/05

Childhood Cancers

Bladder Cancer Does your book cover nutritional recommendations for children with cancer? posted 10/03
Bladder Cancer Do you have recommendations for herbs and vitamins that children should use to recover from a bone marrow transplant? posted 3/05

Colon/RectalCancer

Bladder Cancer Do you have diet suggestions for someone who has diarrhea after
radiation therapy for rectal cancer?
posted 1/04, updated 4/04, 11/04, 1/05

ThyroidCancer

Bladder Cancer Do you have a good source for reliable information for someone who needs to follow a Low Iodine Diet? posted 11/04

Uterine (Endometrial) Cancer

Bladder Cancer Is soy safe to consume for women who have been diagnosed with uterine cancer? posted 2/03
Gastric Cancer Are there any diet changes to help relieve bloating during abdominal radiation? posted 4/03

Gastric (Stomach) Cancer

Gastric Cancer Do you know of any research, findings, suggestions, specific diets, etc. for stomach cancer patients that have had a gastrectomy and who are consequentially having symptoms of dumping syndrome? posted 4/02

Head and Neck Cancer

Gastric Cancer I have head and neck cancer. My doctor is recommending a gastrostomy feeding tube (G-tube). Should I do this? posted 12/03
Cookbooks What cookbooks would you suggest for someone who has esophageal cancer? posted 3/06

Lung Cancer

Gastric Cancer Can you tell me if a product called Sun Soup is useful for patients with lung cancer? posted 1/03, 1/05

Ovarian Cancer

Gastric Cancer Will consuming dairy foods increase my risk for ovarian cancer recurring? posted 11/02, updated 3/05, 5/05
Gastric Cancer Are there any diet changes to help relieve bloating during abdominal radiation? posted 4/03
Gastric Cancer Should I avoid soy foods if I have ovarian cancer? posted 11/04

Pancreatic Cancer

Fruits and Vegetables Is there any specialized diet for people who have had the Whipple procedure for pancreatic cancer? What dietary suggestions would you make? posted 4/06 

Prostate Cancer

Prostate Cancer My husband has prostate cancer. Are your nutrition guidelines appropriate for him, too? posted 4/01, updated 5/02
Prostate Cancer My husband has prostate cancer. I recently read that a high calcium intake may cause prostate cancer. How high is too high? Should I be restricting his calcium intake? posted 5/02, updated 9/02, updated 9/03
Prostate Cancer My husband had prostate cancer. Should he be avoiding flax? posted 4/03
Prostate Cancer A few words of wisdom and encouragement from a man with prostate cancer. posted 2/04
Prostate Cancer Are there some good web sites for prostate cancer information? posted 4/04

Nutritional Concerns during Cancer Treatment (related to side effects)

Nutritional Concerns during  Cancer Treatment Can you provide a list of all chemotherapy drugs called alkylating agents that may potentially have interactions with antioxidant supplements during chemotherapy? posted 10/02
Nutritional Concerns during  Cancer Treatment Dear Diana, I am undergoing treatments for cancer and am not eating well. What should I do? posted 7/01
Nutritional Concerns during Treatment Can I drink your soy shake recipes if my oncologist or dietitian has recommended that I follow a neutropenic diet due to my low white blood cell counts? posted 5/00, updated 7/01, updated 11/02, updated 8/03
Nutritional Concerns during Treatment Should I consume antioxidants during my cancer therapy? posted 12/01, updated 10/02, 1/04, 3/07
Nutritional Concerns during  Treatment Can herbs interact with any of the chemotherapy drugs? posted 4/01, updated 9/02
Nutritional Concerns during  Treatment Are there any diet changes to help relieve bloating during abdominal radiation? posted 4/03
Nutritional Concerns during  Treatment Do you have diet suggestions for someone who has diarrhea after
radiation therapy for rectal cancer?
posted 1/04, udpated 4/04, 11/04, 1/05
Nutritional Concerns during  Treatment Is it safe to drink green tea if I have a port for administration of
my chemotherapy?
posted 1/04
Nutritional Concerns during  Treatment Can you tell me foods to eat to reduce the acid in my urine and
pain in my bladder and ureters?
posted 2/04, updated 5/05
Nutritional Concerns during  Treatment How can I eat a diet as healthy as you suggest if I need to be
hospitalized for more than a day or tw
o?
posted 3/04
Nutritional Concerns during  Treatment My husband is having chemotherapy treatments and has lost his sense
of taste after one treatment. Are there any foods I can prepare that will give him some relief?
posted 9/04
Nutritional Concerns during  Treatment Is there a good web site describing the nutrition related side effects from chemo drugs? posted 10/04
Nutritional Concerns during  Treatment Should I stop drinking green tea during chemotherapy to avoid consuming too many antioxidants? posted 7/05
Gastric Cancer How can I use the diet recommendations on your web site and in your book to both increase my intake of cancer fighting foods for optimizing my cancer recovery and lose weight at the same time? posted 3/06
Herbs Is vitamin E potentially helpful or harmful for breast cancer survivors? posted 3/06
Herbs Are there foods to eat or to avoid in order to help recover from C-diff? posted 4/06

Nutritional Concerns during Cancer Recovery

Nutritional Concerns during Recovery How do you eat in restaurants and still maintain an ultra-healthy diet? posted 12/99
Nutritional Concerns during Cancer Recovery Do you ever 'CHEAT' on your diet? posted 12/99
Nutritional Concerns during Recovery What do you eat for snacks?
Nutritional Concerns during Recovery What is your opinion on other books on nutrition and cancer? posted 4/00
Nutritional Concerns during Recovery Can one eliminate dairy and meat (but not eggs) and still work with your recommended dietary changes?
Nutritional Concerns during Recovery What are your views about sugar for cancer patients? Does it *feed* tumors? Should I avoid it in any form? posted 08/00
Nutritional Concerns during Recovery What can be done to relieve the fatigue I am still experiencing since my cancer therapy has been completed? Will any dietary supplements help me? posted 7/01, updated 9/03
Nutritional Concerns during Recovery Please give me your advice on microwaved food and cancer? posted 2/02
Nutritional Concerns during Recovery I have recently heard that Vitamin A may be linked to osteoporosis. I see Vitamin A in nearly everything on food labels, even my soymilk. What is the connection and how much should I be consuming? posted 5/02, updated 2/03
Gastric Cancer Will consuming dairy foods increase my risk for ovarian cancer recurring? posted 11/02
Gastric Cancer Diana, what are the top 10 - 20 foods that you make sure you eat on a regular basis? posted 12/02
Gastric Cancer Diana, What 5 things have you changed in your diet that you think are the most important for enhancing the odds for long-term cancer recovery?
posted 12/02
Gastric Cancer Do you have diet suggestions for someone who has diarrhea after
radiation therapy for rectal cancer?
posted 1/04, updated 4/04, 11/04, 5/01
Gastric Cancer Is there any diet to alleviate lymphedema resulting from cancer surgery? posted 8/04
Gastric Cancer How "strict" do I need to be with my diet? posted 5/05
Gastric Cancer How can I use the diet recommendations on your web site and in your book to both increase my intake of cancer fighting foods for optimizing my cancer recovery and lose weight at the same time? posted 3/06
Herbs Are there foods to eat or to avoid in order to help recover from C-diff? posted 4/06

Canola Oil

Canola Oil Is canola oil harmful to consume as I have been reading on the Internet? posted 4/01

Flaxseeds

Flaxseeds Is it safe to use flaxseeds whole? I have not found anything that will grind whole flaxseed.
Flaxseeds Is the omega-3 fatty acid content of brown flaxseeds and golden flaxseeds really different? updated 4/02
Flaxseeds Do you have more recipes using flaxseeds? posted 1/02, updated 4/02
Breast Cancer Should women with ER+ breast cancer avoid flaxseeds and flax oil that contain the phytoestrogens called lignans?
Flaxseeds Will taking my medications mixed with flaxseed powder and applesauce cause them to not be absorbed? posted 2/02, updated 8/03
Flaxseeds How quickly does one need to eat ground flaxseed to prevent spoilage? posted 5/02  
Flaxseeds What is the best way to clean out my coffee grinder when switching from grinding my coffee to flaxseeds? posted 12/02
Prostate Cancer My husband had prostate cancer. Should he be avoiding flax? posted 4/03
Flaxseeds Does consuming flaxseeds potentially interfere with the anti-estrogen effect of Tamoxifen? posted 9/03, updated 1/04
Flaxseeds

Are flaxseeds safe to eat after heating? posted 1/04

Flaxseeds The May 2004 issue of Prevention Magazine says that women with ER+ breast cancer should not be eating flaxseeds. Do you agree? posted 4/04

Fish

Fish What are some alternatives to eating farmed salmon in order to still obtain omega-3 fatty acids from seafoods? posted 9/02
Fish Is eating salmon healthy for our environment? updated 6/02, 7/02
Fish Have you changed the amounts or types of fish you eat as new
information becomes available regarding the mercury content of
fish?
posted 1/04

Meat

Fruits and Vegetables Diana, do you ever eat any meat (other than fish)? posted 11/02
Fruits and Vegetables What are your thoughts on the importance of consumption of organic foods for cancer survivors? posted 4/04

Fruits and Vegetables

Fruits and Vegetables Which fruits and vegetables are the best to eat? updated 6/02 
Fruits and Vegetables

What is your opinion of the vegie washes that are on the market? What do you use on your fruit and vegetables? posted 4/03

Fruits and Vegetables

What are your thoughts on the importance of consumption of organic foods for cancer survivors? posted 4/04

Herbs and other Dietary Supplements

Can herbs interact with any of the chemotherapy drugs? posted 4/01, updated 9/02
Is the herbal product Amrit® safe to take during chemotherapy? posted 9/02, updated 11/05
Did you use Essiac tea? There seems to be so much confusing and conflicting information available about this. Can you steer me to some reliable information? posted 8/02, updated 1/05
Herbs Do you know anything about the recalls of the herbal products SPES™ and PC-SPES™, both made by BotanicLabs? posted 6/02
Herbs Which herbs might cause problems with blood clotting? updated 8/03, 1/04
Herbs Can you tell me if a product called Sun Soup is useful for patients with lung cancer? posted 1/03, updated 4/04, 1/05
Herbs

Is Coral Calcium the cure for cancer? posted 9/03

Herbs Q What is your opinion on IP6? I've been hearing good things about its effect on cellular health. posted 2/04
Herbs

Should I drink wheatgrass juice to help fight my cancer?posted 2/04,
updated 3/06

Herbs Is vitamin E potentially helpful or harmful for breast cancer survivors? posted 3/06
Herbs Are there foods to eat or to avoid in order to help recover from C-diff? posted 4/06

Soy

Soy Will eating soy foods decrease my thyroid function and energy level? posted 1/01
Soy I recall reading somewhere that eating a lot of soy could hamper fertility. Is this true? posted 5/01
Soy Is soy safe to consume for women who have been diagnosed with uterine cancer? posted 2/03, updated 7/05
Soy What do you recommend for an anti-cancer diet to people who choose not to eat soy foods? posted 2/04
Soy Do you have suggestions for more websites that have great recipes using soy foods? posted 11/04

Soy Shake and Blender Questions

Soy Shake Is your soy shake's sugar content safe to drink for diabetics? posted 8/00
Soy Shake What kind of blender you are using? Mine won't grind the carrots in your shake recipe. Can you tell me what specifications I should look for? posted 11/00
Soy Shake My blender won't blend the carrots. Do you have other suggestions? posted 4/01
Soy Shake Your shake recipe makes about 3 cups. Is that really just one serving? If so, can I drink some of it later? Does it keep in the refrigerator? Have you ever tried freezing it? posted 12/00
Soy Shake With cold weather upon us, can you suggest something hot that would have the nutrients that your shake has but would be more welcoming during the winter? posted 01/06

Tea

Tea Does decaffeinated green tea still have the health promoting phytochemical called Epigallo-catechin-gallate (EGCG)? posted 1/01
Tea What other teas are healthful to drink in addition to green tea?
Tea Is white tea better than green tea for cancer patients? posted 2/03
Tea Can green tea capsules increase chance of bleeding and bruising for any type of surgery? posted 8/03
Tea Is it safe to drink green tea if I have a port for administration of my chemotherapy? posted 1/04
Tea Can drinking tea reduce the absorption of iron, contributing to low red cell counts and iron-deficiency anemia? posted 8/04
Tea Do flavored green teas have the same anti-cancer activity as plain green tea? posted 10/04
Tea Should I be avoiding all caffeine to help fight my breast cancer?
posted 11/04
 
Tea Does adding milk to tea reduce its anti-cancer benefit? posted 3/05
Tea What you think about the Jason Winters tea? posted 5/05
Tea Should I stop drinking green tea during chemotherapy to avoid consuming too many antioxidants? posted 7/05

Vegetarian Nutrition

Vegetarian Nutrition What are some other great web sites for great-tasting vegetarian recipes? posted 1/01
Vegetarian Nutrition What do you cook for big holiday meals to accommodate guests and family members who are not vegetarian? posted 6/01

Vitamins

Bladder Cancer I am being treated for bladder cancer. I have heard that vitamins that might help me reduce my risk of recurrence. Do you know anything about this? posted 8/02 , updated 11/05
Bladder Cancer Do you have recommendations for herbs and vitamins that children should use to recover from a bone marrow transplant? posted 3/05
Nutritional Concerns during  Cancer Treatment Can you provide a list of all chemotherapy drugs called alkylating agents that may potentially have interactions with antioxidant supplements during chemotherapy? posted 10/02
Nutritional Concerns during Treatment Should I consume antioxidants during my cancer therapy? posted 12/01, updated 10/02, 1/04, 3/07
Nutritional Concerns during  Treatment Should I stop drinking green tea during chemotherapy to avoid consuming too many antioxidants? posted 7/05
Nutritional Concerns during Recovery I have recently heard that Vitamin A may be linked to osteoporosis. I see Vitamin A in nearly everything on food labels, even my soymilk. What is the connection and how much should I be consuming? posted 5/02, updated 2/03
Vegetarian Nutrition I have recently seen a lot of news articles about the relationship between vitamin D and cancer prevention. Should we all run out and get more Vitamin D supplements? posted 2/06
Vegetarian Nutrition Is vitamin E potentially helpful or harmful for breast cancer survivors? posted 3/06

Other Anti-Cancer Diets

Nutritional Concerns during Recovery Can one eliminate dairy and meat (but not eggs) and still work with your recommended dietary changes?
Nutritional Concerns during Recovery What is your opinion on other books on nutrition and cancer? posted 4/00
Vegetarian Nutrition Are the Renewal Diet and the Hallelujah Diet helpful for cancer patients? posted 3/03
Vegetarian Nutrition What are the pros and cons of juicing to help get rid of my cancer? posted 4/03
Vegetarian Nutrition What do you recommend for an anti-cancer diet to people who choose not to eat soy foods? posted 2/04

Clinical Trials

Vegetarian Nutrition Are there any clinical trials recruiting participants that are testing any nutritional regimens to help treat various cancers or reduce the odds of recurrence? posted 5/03, updated 5/04, updated 12/06

Miscellaneous

WBC Count What research studies have you funded with the proceeds from the sale of your book? posted 9/02, updated 09/05, updated 12/06, 9/07
WBC Count Has your WBC count finally gone back up to normal?
WBC Counts What do you think helped your WBC count finally get back to normal? posted 8/02
Lab Tests Can you recommend a web site or relatively user-friendly book that would explain the particular lab tests I am having done, results and what that means? posted 4/02
Coffee? Do you ever drink coffee? I just cannot give it up! posted 8/03
Black-outs What did you eat during the recent black-out? posted 9/03, updated 10/03
Cookbooks Diana, do you have a favorite cookbook? posted 9/03
Cookbooks I am a student entering the field of dietetics. May I ask you some questions? posted 10/03
Cookbooks Why don't you put calories and other nutrients on all of your recipes? How can I figure this out myself? posted 8/04
Cookbooks I could not get a flu shot this year. Are there immune-boosting foods that you can recommend? posted 11/04, updated 1/05
Cookbooks How do you know you are cured? posted 5/05
Cookbooks Can you give me some advice about self-publishing a book? posted 7/05
Cookbooks What cookbooks would you suggest for someone who has esophageal cancer? posted 3/06
Herbs Are there foods to eat or to avoid in order to help recover from C-diff? posted 4/06


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These questions and answers are intended to be of a general informative nature. Please consult with the Registered Dietitian in your cancer center or your health care provider for nutritional advice that can be individualized to your specific medical condition.


 

Contact Information:
Phone/Fax: 734/996-9260

P.O. Box 130221, Ann Arbor, MI  48113

 

Last Updated: January 2, 2012

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