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Breast Cancer

How to reduce risk of breast cancer or deal with its issues

Mediterranean Diet, Olive Oil & Breast Cancer Risk

Can a Mediterranean-style diet reduce your risk of breast cancer? Olive oil is key to plant-focused Mediterranean diet

Exciting headlines from the PREDIMED study proclaim potential for major reductions in breast cancer risk, with olive oil seemingly a key factor. Yet other studies portray less clear-cut protection. Therefore, it’s important to step back and look at what differing results among these studies might mean as women seek to find doable choices that could play a role in reducing breast cancer risk.

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Eating Choices to Lower Cancer Risk – Q&A

Does it seem the more you read and hear about healthy eating for cancer prevention, the more questions you have?Eating Choices to Reduce Cancer Risk – Questions Answered

Over the past month and a half, I’ve traveled across the country, giving five presentations on what’s current about diet and cancer prevention. Whether I was speaking to graduate students, dietitian nutritionists and other health professionals, or the public, people who are trying to stay on top of nutrition information find it challenging.

On the premise that a question posed by one person is usually a question for many others, today’s Smart Bytes® is dedicated to addressing some very good questions I’ve been asked during recent presentations.

You don’t have to be at one of my presentations to pose a question: you are welcome to reach me right here with questions you’d like addressed any time. For now, read on….how many of these questions have puzzled you, too?

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Do Carotenoids Lower Breast Cancer Risk? Behind the Headlines

If you think of eating more vegetables and fruits primarily in relationship to weight management, a new study adds more reason to re-think that, suggesting potential to reduce risk of breast cancer.

Can healthy eating help breast cancer prevention?

Breast Cancer:
Do carotenoid-rich foods help reduce risk?

Looking at blood levels of carotenoids – beta-carotene plus several related compounds that collectively are known to be markers of vegetable consumption – this new study adds a fresh perspective on short-term and long-term links to breast cancer risk.

The take-home message here is not necessarily what it seems, however. So let’s look beyond the headline about this link to see what this study adds as you seek doable ways to reduce your risk of cancer and promote overall health and wellbeing.

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How You Can Create a “New Normal” for a Healthy Lifestyle

Once established, lifestyle habits – including what and how much we eat and drink, how much we sit and how much we move – become so enmeshed with our day-to-day living, that it can be hard to imagine living any other way. Some might think that when a health scare or other “flashing lights” point at how a healthy lifestyle could make a significant difference and improve quality of life, changing habits would become easy. Not so, for many people.

How can you create a “new normal”?

In this, the final section of my video interview with Maura Harrigan, MS, RD, CSO, you’ll hear what she’s learned through years of working one-on-one with cancer survivors. Yes, even cancer survivors, having faced one of the most-feared medical diagnoses, turn out to have as much trouble as everyone else adopting healthy eating habits and regular physical activity, even though research increasingly shows the difference it can make.

Maura Harrigan is a registered dietitian who is a board-certified Specialist in Oncology Nutrition. Ms. Harrigan is a research associate at the Yale School of Public Health, and Nutrition Director of the Cancer Survivorship Clinic at Yale Cancer Center.  Since the last section of my Smart Bytes® interview with Ms. Harrigan, the Lifestyle, Exercise and Nutrition (LEAN) Study team at Yale received a lot of attention at the American Society of Clinical Oncology meeting sharing exciting findings about potential benefits of lifestyle change in breast cancer survivors.

You don’t need to be a cancer survivor to feel “stuck” in habits. Following the video, read on for a checklist that summarizes research-supported tips on creating healthful eating and other lifestyle choices relevant to us all.

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Cancer Survivors: Is Exercise Worth It?

Exercise? Aren’t cancer survivors supposed to rest a lot, especially when experiencing the classic problem of cancer-related fatigue?

I still remember when my grandmother had a heart attack and was put on extended bedrest. Not so today – getting people up and moving after heart attack or cardiac procedure is standard care now. What’s not so well known yet are research findings on how physical activity may provide benefits of many sorts for cancer survivors.

Here, in the third section of a video interview with Maura Harrigan, MS, RD, CSO, you’ll hear about what she’s found through participation in research trials and working with individual cancer survivors. Whether or not you are (or know) a cancer survivor, her information is spot-on and her message so positive and empowering, you won’t want to miss this.

Maura Harrigan is a registered dietitian who is a board-certified Specialist in Oncology Nutrition. Ms. Harrigan is a research associate at the Yale School of Public Health, and Nutrition Director of the Cancer Survivorship Clinic at Yale Cancer Center. She is part of a key study there known as the Lifestyle, Exercise and Nutrition (LEAN) Study, which may have major implications for breast cancer survivors’ care in the future.

Following the video, read on for more that that may help put this information in context of choices that promote cancer survivors’ health.

(Email subscribers, click here to go to my Smart Bytes® blog so you can view the video.)


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