Nutrition Basics for Cancer Survivors

VIDEO | 16:00

Clinical nutritionist Cara Anselmo of the Evelyn H. Lauder Breast Center at Memorial Sloan Kettering encourages cancer survivors to adopt nutritious eating habits as part of a healthy lifestyle.

The American Institute of Cancer Research and the USDA recommend eating a variety of fresh vegetables, fruits, and whole grains, with smaller portions of lean animal protein and dairy. Following these guidelines may reduce the risk of cancer recurrence and help to prevent or manage chronic diseases such as diabetes, high blood pressure, high cholesterol, and heart disease.

Anselmo emphasizes the importance of choosing carbohydrates, fats, and proteins that are rich in vitamins, minerals, and trace elements. Sugars and fats that are naturally present in foods are nutritious, but added sugars and trans fats found in many processed foods add calories instead of nutrients and fiber. Choosing nutrient-rich foods in appropriately sized portions can help cancer survivors regain or lose weight after cancer treatment.