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Your War Chest Against Cancer
on November 15, 2011
A very dear friend of mine gave me this fabulous cookbook during the Christmas holidays called 'Cancer-Fighting Kitchen: Nourishing, Big-Flavour Recipes for Cancer Treatment and Recovery' by Rebecca Katz with Mat Edelson.
Since my diagnosis of Breast Cancer in October 2010, I have been given and purchased many cookbooks, reference guides to leading a healthier, active lifestyle, etc' I think I am covered for the next 9 months in terms of research and enjoyable reading! However, I thought it important to pass this along as it is one of those books that your family would benefit wholly from. What sets this cookbook apart from others is its unique approach to your kitchen and converting your refrigerator into its own cancer-fighting battle ground plus how to take care of yourself during Chemotherapy treatment.
From Chapter One's Cancer-Fighting Tool Kit and learning things about the four pantry staples, to easing side effects from treatment to easy recipes to relieving symptoms such as anemia, constipation, fatigue, nausea and vomiting. There is something about everything in terms of easing this tough period of a patients life.
And one of the perks of this Chapter, apart from the delicious recipes, is the Culinary Pharmacy section starting on page 28. It's your very own cheat-list to adding immunity boosting spices, seeds, and nuts to meals you may have only added mild seasoning to such as salt and pepper.
It also includes very important vegetables most recognized as natural anti-inflammatories, digestions aids, nausea reducers, anti-bacterials, appetite stimulators, and NF-kB regulators.
My personal favourite is learning the benefits of adding fresh and dry herbs to dishes and not just as last minute add-ins or garnishes. You learn not only their medicinal characteristics but additional ways to use them to extract their full potential as your very own food-warriors!
I love the spice Cumin, commonly used in Indian and Asian foods. Knowing now that it is an appetite stimulant, digestion aid, antimicrobial and NF-kB regulator prompts me to use more of it not only within my own dishes but to make sure it's properly introduced into my children's diets and NOW! 'Studies looking into cumin seeds showed a potential ability to slow down the growth of stomach and cervical tumors' (page 34).
And take Sesame Seeds, just a sprinkle over your fruit, veggies, salads, whatever you decide, it becomes something other than just a garnish for flavour. They are considered an anti-inflammatory; they are rich in lignans which may protect against hormone-related cancers; they are rich in gamma-tocopherols, a form of vitamin E, which studies say may help men dealing with prostate cancer.
And let's talk about TOMATOES (powerful anti-oxidant lycopene), Butternut Squash (colon cleansing benefits), Spinach (carotenoids and kaempferol lowers risks in prostate and ovarian cancers) and Potatoes (Vitamin B6 and powerful detoxifier)! All major cancer-fighting vegetables that are common, easily found at the grocery store and easy to prepare ' just start at page 52 and you are on your way to healthier soups that serve a purpose!
I love the fact that Chapter Three: Nourishing Soups and Broths starts off with the 'Magic Mineral Broth', which Rebecca Katz refers to as her 'Rosetta stone of soup' - providing a perfect base for any hearty soup but more importantly it serves as a rejuvenating liquid, to help Chemo patients with dehydration issues and will certainly boost any immune system down from minerals such as magnesium, potassium, and even sodium. It allows the body to recoup and start afresh.
And please know this cookbook is current! I am making an admission, an ignorant one at that, I had no idea there were so many fabulous alternatives to grains such as Quinoa and Spelt both anti-inflammatories! Recipes for Quinoa Pilaf is found on page 149 and Beyond Just Good Cornbread, uses Spelt Flour, is found on page 129 ' good stuff!
I have to say I am believer now that food is our natural healer! Well, fresh unprocessed food heals us through out, and if prepared, cooked and consumed properly, we know food is the ultimate warrior in this battle against horrible diseases such as cancer.
I haven't promoted any cookbooks yet, but this will be my first and a great start to a whole new chapter in my own life. The Cancer-Fighting Kitchen is a must have for all kitchens and remember most of the recipes are child friendly as well.
Be well and God Bless!
Written by Alexandra Wallace-Currie at [...]