Tag Archives: cancer

8 Principles of A Healthy Lifestyle

Here’s a great read by Mark Occhipinti, Ph.D.


The benefits of a healthy diet and healthy lifestyle can save your life. There are so many positive reasons to change the way you eat. You will lose body fat, increase your energy, lower your risks of heart disease, diabetes, cancer, have more energy, have a better sex life-all true and attainable by following 8 simple principles:

Eating Whole Unprocessed Foods

1. Eating whole unprocessed foods provides an abundance of nutrients that strengthens our body’s immune system and protect us from chemicals in the environment. Reducing the risks of degenerative diseases, will save us money, now and in the long run. Just think –if you are not sick you do not need medications, frequent doctor visits, hospital stays, etc.

Fresh Foods

2. Vitamin supplements are not the answer for good health-eating good food is! Vitamins can be beneficial in certain instances, but they can never take the place of eating , fresh organic whole foods that contain not only the vitamin/mineral of the specific supplement in the bottle, but hundreds to thousands of nutrients that work together synergistically to support the human body.

Plant Foods

3. There are virtually no nutrients in animal foods that are not supplied more healthfully in plant based foods. Plant foods contain fiber for healthy colon, animal products do not. Plant foods contain dramatically more anti-oxidants than animal foods. Plant foods are either absent or very low in cholesterol and for the most part fat. Animal foods cannot make that claim. There are those who state that plant based foods contain little if any vitamin B12, versus animal foods that contain much higher levels. According to Dr. Colin Campbell, author of “The China Study” states that American’s contain a 3 year supply of vitamin B12. It is very easy to add a supplement of vitamin B12 to assure yourself of maintaining healthy levels of this important vitamin.


4. Genes alone do not determine whether or not you will develop disease-especially cancer! One in three Americans according to the American Cancer Society will develop cancer in their lifetime. According to current projections by the National Institute of Health, cancer will soon surpass heart disease as the number one killer in the United States. The “war” on cancer has it had been coined by President Richard Nixon in 1971 has for the most part been an abject failure. There is great news however-instead of trying to find a specific gene to “shut it off”, as many cancer researchers are doing today, we could just never turn it on. The research from The China Study clearly demonstrates cancer genes that are not expressed [not actually cancer cells], can remain biochemically dormant in the absence of animal proteins-specifically casein [from dairy products]. And in the case where the cancer genes have developed into cancer-the cancer can be reversed with a chance to a plant based diet.

There are several excellent books to help individuals in understanding cancer and taking ownership of the disease instead of putting their lives in the hands of oncologists –who will use the standard treatments of chemotherapy, radiation, surgery and then expensive drugs with many side-effects.

Nutrition Can Substantially Control Adverse Effects of Chemicals

5. We are all exposed to noxious chemicals-in the workplace and there is the potential to face them daily in our homes. Nutrition can substantially control the adverse effects of these chemicals. We may not be able to avoid exposure to chemicals that can damage the normal genes in our body turning them into cancer genes, however through a diet rich in anti-oxidants derived from a plant-based diet we can keep these damaged “cancer” genes dormant for our entire lives by eating whole foods [fruits, vegetables, whole unprocessed grains, beans, seeds, nuts, legumes].

Chronic Disease

6. Chronic disease does not happen over-night. Quite simply one hamburger or batch of chicken wings will not cause a heart attack. However daily doses of artery clogging animal fat over time will cause the dreaded diseases that cut short millions of Americans lives pre-maturely. In The China Study, Dr. Campbell has demonstrated that the same good plant-based nutrition that can prevent disease in its early stages [before diagnosis] can also halt or reverse disease in its later stages [after diagnosis] by switching to a plant-based diet. One of the most profound discoveries associated with a change in diet is in the area of auto-immune diseases.

Diseases such as Alzheimer’s, Rheumatoid Arthritis and Multiple Sclerosis were and are by many in the health field to be irreversible, and that the best that can be down is slow the progression with drugs.

The evidence of a change in diet from an animal based to plant-based diet has been demonstrated by Dr. Roy Swank at John Hopkins University, Dr. Neil Bernard, at Physicians for Responsible Medicine is exciting, and gives great hope for those American’s suffering from these and other debilitating diseases.


7. There is no specific magic bullet single nutrient that will cure, or prevent diseases. However, there are many books on diet or taking specific supplements without addressing over-all eating habits for sale today. Instead of seeking out a specific diet for a specific disease, switching to a plant-based diet will benefit the body and reduce all chronic disease developments across the board. The Campbell is quoted; +Quite simply, you can maximize health and reduce disease across the board with one simple diet.+

Everything is Connected

8. Good Nutrition creates good health, and everything is connected. Disease knows no barriers, the rich, poor, highly educated, famous all suffer needlessly from diseases caused by the choice made when it comes to diet. Instead of worrying about identifying a single gene among the hundreds of thousands in the human body, we could all +collectively relax, take a deep breath+ as Dr. Campbell states and realize that good health and avoidance is at the end of our fork.
It sounds so simplistic-preventing and reversing disease by changing our diet. It IS! The science is there to prove a change to a plant-based diet will change our lives. The only groups that will not be happy will be drug companies, and those industries that push animal products. We as Americans can take control of our lives and our health by simply eating a healthy whole foods plant-based diet. What do you have to lose?

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Sugar! Could You Do A Month Without Sugar?

Could You Do A Month Without Sugar?.pngI became more aware of the dangers of high sugar intake in American diets when I began blogging 6 years ago, and made diabetes a platform issue for my website, PaulasHealthyLiving.com. Our nation’s sugar habit is a driving force behind the diabetes and obesity epidemic in the US and it’s believed to be a contributing factor to cancer and Alzheimer’s according to The New York Times (January 1, 2017).

The questions is, if it takes three weeks to change a habit, could you go four weeks without added sweeteners?

I challenged myself with this concept after a doctor asked me to remove maladextrin, a sugar substitute, to help with stomach issues I was experiencing.  It’s a daunting task, but it could help you reset your sugar taste buds.

Sugar comes with many different names:

If you begin looking at ingredient lists, you may be shocked how frequently you will see these names within the first 3-4 names on ingredients lists. The higher they are on the lists, the more there is in the product.  See the level of sugar in commonly consumed drinks and products across the nation.

The American Heart Association recommends no more than 24 grams of sugar per day for women, and 36 grams per day for men.

A single 16-ounce bottle of Coke has 52 grams.

Could You Do A Month Without Sugar?You may find yourself reevaluating a lot of the ‘healthy’ foods you regularly consumed previously like

  • granola or packaged cereals which predominantly contain added sugars
  • processed orange juice
  • flavored yogurt
  • pizza sauce
  • sugar free snacks

One effort to assist in this challenge would be cooking, and therefore, controlling your own food.  

If you buy it from outside aisles of the grocery, instead of the inside aisles, it more likely to help you in your quest.

What you will find at the end of the experiment is the pure taste in things such as

  • honey crisp apples
  • oranges
  • sweet red peppers and
  • many other foods

I’m not an advocate of all-or-nothing diet plans, and a bit of 80% cocoa dark chocolate makes my heart sing in the afternoon sometimes, but you will realize a renewed, sensitive set of taste buds that have been dulled by processed foods.

It’s an awakening to the beauty and amazing nature of natural food items and improved health is a bonus!

Paul Maier, Contributing Editor for Indian Hill Connection Magazine

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Is Eating Organic Food Actually Better for You?

A guest post by Lisa Bonet.

There are various reasons why you may choose organic produce, from protecting your health and the health of those who work in agriculture to preserving the environment. However, with organic food costing significantly more than standard produce, if you are most interested in its potential health benefits, you will want to know whether the extra cost is really worth it. It’s no surprise you may wonder this, as with conflicting reports on the nutritional value of organic crops, you want to make sure that your money is well spent, as on a tight budget organic produce is a luxury.

Continue reading

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Truly Surviving After Cancer

by Ann Pietrangelo

There are more than 13.7 million cancer survivors in the United States, a number the National Cancer Institute expects to grow to almost 18 million by 2022. Despite medical advances that help more of us to survive longer, the reality of cancer, and its emotional aftermath simply cannot be measured in statistics.

“You Have Cancer”

The words no one wants to hear. I sure didn’t. Cancer patients are as unique as individuals of any other group, each viewing cancer through the lens of our life experience. I’m not a “why me?” type of person. I didn’t feel that way when I was diagnosed with multiple sclerosis (MS) and I didn’t feel that way about cancer. Still, I had to come to terms with the fact that it was really happening to me. Cancer! There’s no way to prepare yourself for that.

The dawning of my new reality came in waves. There was that first inkling that cancer was a probability; then I caught that look at the doctor’s office – the look that hinted at things I could not yet understand; and the suspension of time as the news was delivered and all hope of an alternate diagnosis vanished.

At first, thoughts of cancer were all consuming, playing on an endless loop in our brains, as my husband and I educated ourselves and made decisions we hoped would increase my chances of being counted as a survivor five years down the road.

So, Now You’re a “Survivor”

“You’re already a survivor,” my doctor said, even before treatment began. “From the moment you were diagnosed, as long as you are alive, you are a survivor.”

A survivor. Somehow, I didn’t feel I deserved the label. It didn’t take long to go from finding a suspicious lump in my breast to being called a survivor. Shouldn’t you have to go through something big to call yourself a survivor? If not, aren’t we all survivors just for making it through another day? The whole “survivor” thing was a mystery to me.

Once treatment was underway, we knew we had to turn our attention to the real business at hand – living. We didn’t want to be all about cancer. We continued to work and play and live and laugh and love because if you don’t, you’ll lose yourself. So, you get up every day and you cope with its challenges because this is another day of life and you can take it or leave it and you’d rather take it.

The body and the spirit are inexorably intertwined, each affecting the other for better or for worse. Cancer patients deal with a complex set of emotions regarding their very survival. As you work your way through treatment, the most unusual and unpleasant things become part of your world. Not that you enjoy them, but you accept them as part of the deal when you decided to fight for your life. You hope, with every fiber of your being, that it is but a temporary state of affairs, and that it is going to prevent you from dying just yet.

You begin to ignore the small stuff. As time goes on, you relegate more things to that small stuff category, clarifying the things that matter the most.

After ten months of treatment, it was over. No more surgery; no more chemotherapy; no more radiation treatments. No more fighting to beat the odds, at least not in an immediate medical sense.

It was then that the meaning of the word “survivor” started to make sense. It’s about more than being alive. It’s about being alive after walking through the fires of hell. Well, not hell exactly, but fire nonetheless. It’s about walking that walk with purpose. It’s about being alive in the moment, even when all is not well and the future is a great big question mark, because you realize that whether they admit it or not, it’s uncertain for everyone else, too.

There’s surviving, as in staying physically alive, and then there’s SURVIVING, as in getting past fear and living life to the fullest.

Life After Cancer

The physical scars you take with you into life after cancer are obvious, but the emotional changes can take you by surprise. You have an unexplained pain and thoughts of recurrence are sure to follow. A younger person dies of cancer and you ache with survivor’s guilt. You feel grateful for each day that you’re here, but wonder if you’re making good use of your time.

Survivor statistics tell a story, but not the whole story. Being alive a particular number of years after a cancer diagnosis is a wonderful thing. For many of us, those years are different from the ones that came before. Some survivors thrive, but others never quite recover from the trauma. Cancer doesn’t necessarily come with any great epiphany, but some patients may feel pressured to make great life changes. Cancer stirs the pot, that’s for sure. Things were this way and now they’re that way and there’s no going back. Cancer is a life changer. We survivors must choose how we’ll deal with that change.

I’m a survivor. Where the road leads, or how long it continues, I cannot know, but hey, I’m still on the road, and for that I’m truly grateful.

Ann Pietrangelo is a freelance writer; MS and TNBC survivor; and the author of “Catch That Look: Living, Laughing & Loving Despite Triple-Negative Breast Cancer” and “No More Secs! Living, Laughing & Loving Despite Multiple Sclerosis

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