"The medical literature tells us that the most effective ways to reduce the risk of heart disease, cancer, stroke, diabetes, Alzheimer's, and many more problems are through healthy diet and exercise. Our bodies have evolved to move, yet we now use the energy in oil instead of muscles to do our work." (David Suzuki, a Canadian author and scientist)
Since completing cancer treatment, I constantly hear "Alex, you're looking great!" from family, friends and colleagues.
I have to admit. it's nice to hear positive comments about my looks. Prior to cancer, I was very frustrated with my weight. I’d go to the gym, but didn’t noticed much results. Then, when I was diagnosed with cancer, I started reading about what type of foods to eat for the treatment. Now, keep in mind, a month at the cancer infusion center helped me lose about 20 pounds (one of the benefits of chemotherapy ;-) However, the whole experience changed my attitude and perspective on eating healthy.
When I did change my diet, and kept it about the same following treatment, I quickly noticed some physical benefits. Obviously, the most apparent benefit was the weight loss. But, I’ve also noticed … or actually felt … that my energy level lasted longer throughout the day. And despite the noticeable short-term memory loss caused by the treatment, my cognitive and analytical ability has improved as well.
While the weight loss, increased energy, and improved critical thinking were noticeable improvements, I believe that eating healthy also enhances the immune system and internal physiological and molecular environment.
Hopefully some of the following tactics that I use, may in fact, help anyone who desires to improve their health and quality of life as well:
- First, I purchased a Ninja professional blender – an expensive one – to make vegetable and fruit smoothies. I thought to myself, “If it costs more, then I’ll use it." It proved to be a good idea. I’ve had it for nearly two years, although, I plan to replace it with a better quality one like Vitamix or Blendtec (in my opinion: the benefit of blenders compared to juicers is that you consume all the pulp that contains most of the minerals and vitamins).
- Second, another tactic is to reserve the top portion of a small grocery cart for vegetables and fruits only, and the rest of the items are placed in the bottom portion.
- Then, I stopped buying processed foods, which are full of chemicals and other synthetic ingredients (if I cannot pronounce the ingredient on the back label, I don’t buy it).
- Another good tactic is to bring lunch to work, which by the way, not only saves you money, but also helps decrease the calorie intake throughout the day.
So, there you have it. By incorporating high fiber smoothies into my diet, filling the grocery cart with more fruits and vegetables, no longer buying processed foods, and bringing lunch to work, I am closer to living a more healthy lifestyle.