Lowering the Risk of Recurrence after Chemotherapy

Tips for lowering the risk of recurrence after chemotherapy.

Lowering the Risk of Recurrence after ChemotherapyIt is common for patients to ask about lowering the risk of recurrence after chemotherapy for early stage colon cancer. Doctors will suggest that simple lifestyle habits learned in elementary school still apply today. Eating a healthy, low-fat diet and exercising regularly will assist in lowering the risk of recurrence after chemotherapy. Doctors recommend at least 150 minutes of exercise a week. If a patient can exercise more than that, that is even better, but that gives a patient a good starting point.

The National Cancer Institute recommends a low-fat high fiber diet and that includes a recommendation for five servings of vegetables and fruits each and every day.  Foods that are high in fat include meats, dairy products, oils used in cooking and even salad dressing. Lifestyle changes that may help in lowering the risk of recurrence after chemotherapy may also include just changing how you cook and the food that you eat

Christopher Lieu, MD:  This is one of the most common questions that I get from patients that have recently completed their chemotherapy for early stage colorectal cancer, and what I tell them is that everything that you have learned in elementary schools still applies today and that is to eat a healthy low fat diet and to get exercise and we will typically recommend about a 150 minutes per week, if you can exercise more than that, that is even better, but that gives you at least a good goal to start with.  The National Cancer Institute always recommends a low fat high fibre diet and that includes a recommendation for five servings of vegetables and fruits each and every day.  Foods that are high in fat include meats, dairy products, oils used in cooking and even salad dressing and lifestyle changes may also include just changing how you cook and the food that you eat, but still I always tell patients the best recommendation is what you have always learned and that is to eat a healthy diet and to get as much exercise as possible.

For an interactive tool to learn more about your colon cancer and your personalized treatment options, go to MyColonCancerCoach.org.

 

Christopher Lieu
Dr. Lieu joined the University of Colorado School of Medicine faculty as an Assistant Professor in July 2011. He trained in internal medicine at the University of Colorado, where he also served as a Chief Medical Resident. He completed his fellowship training in medical oncology at the University of Texas MD Anderson Cancer Center and served as the Chief Medical Oncology Fellow in 2010.


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