Archive for Cancer Prevention

Start the Conversation

Can We Talk?  I just need a moment. This one, short conversation could be a game changer for you and your family. Unfortunately, this brief conversation is rarely started and loved ones suffer. HCB2 sparks conversations that are just hard to start. So what does HCB2 want to talk about?

We want to talk about your potty time – yep, potty time is no longer private time here at HCB2! We want to unlock the silence that is allowing a deadly disease to thrive. It’s critical to de-shame topics such as elimination, poop, gas, bloating, abdominal pain, diarrhea, and blood in stool.  Additionally, we want loved ones to talk about their family history as opposed to avoiding the conversation. Moreover, we hear the words ‘colon, rectal, or anal cancer’ whispered softly ‘out of respect’ or to avoid shaming the patient or lost loved one. Enough!  HCB2 understands how the avoidance of this discussion leads to heartache, and how we unintentionally keep colorectal cancer alive and well with our silence.

HCB2 has created a one page form with six simple questions you can use to start the conversation with loved ones. Six easy questions which help to break through the silence.The questions may lead to laughter, may lead to more questions, or may lead to a more serious discussion. Whatever the tone of the conversation, the silence has been broken, new information has been learned, and ultimately, lives may be saved.

See attached link for the CanWeTalk.pages which can provide assistance in starting the conversation and it provides information about symptoms and screening options. After your conversation, share your experiences with us! We would love to hear from you. Email info@hcb2.org. Start the conversation #cancerhatesthat

Helping you to Fight Right: HCB2’s Anti-Inflammatory Grocery List

Last year, HCB2 partnered with Dr. Marlisa Hurt to create an anti-inflammatory grocery list. As many of you know, we offer free Healing Belly Baskets (make your request here) to cancer patients and survivors, but we realized that people were looking for more information and support beyond this service.

The HCB2 grocery list focuses on consuming quality fats, clean proteins, veggies, and low-glycemic fresh fruits. We also highlight the importance of hydration and identify foods which support our gut microbiome – the “good guy” bacteria that plays a role in digestion and helps to synthesize nutrients.

The anti-inflammatory grocery list encourages folks to limit or avoid certain foods and food-like substances that have been linked to less than optimal health outcomes. This includes the avoidance of added and excess sugars in the diet, as well as avoiding all forms of artificial sugars. For instance, if you prefer to add something sweet to your food or drink, we recommend liquid stevia or luo han guo (also known as monk fruit).

You might notice that grains and legumes are missing from the HCB2 grocery list. Too often, many people are consuming large amounts of these over processed foods. Most grains are highly glycemic and very difficult to digest especially in individuals where their gut health may be compromised.

Caffeine and alcohol are also off the list. It’s good to know that these chemicals are not necessary for proper bodily function though many of us may feel the need for that coffee jolt in the morning. For those dealing with health issues, caffeine and alcohol can contribute to the burden placed on the body each day especially if our nutritional needs are not being met.

HCB2 loves quality fat! Previously, we wrote about the importance of fat. Saturated fats are an important nutrient to our cell structure, and fats have been shown in the research to support cardiovascular health, good (HDL) cholesterol, and weight management. Additionally, quality fats have be shown to be protective against cancer and some of the side effects of cancer treatment.

At first glance, the HCB2 anti-inflammatory grocery list may seem a bit restrictive. With the help of Dr. Hurt and current research, we selected those nutrients which help to create a bodily environment where cancer is challenged to survive. It’s time to get creative because there are so many foods one can incorporate into each meal. Remove the stress about daily food choices by opening your mind to new ideas. For example, crack an egg into a pan of coconut oil, add some organic spinach, and unrefined sea salt (not table salt) to taste. Remove from pan and plate along side 1/2 avocado. The fat and protein will stay with you for hours so you will not be crashing prior to lunch, plus your brain, muscles, and cells will love it!

To sum up with some easy to remember tips! Fight Right with real food. Enjoy all the colors of the rainbow represented in a wide array of vegetables. Quality fats are not your enemy, and a hydrated body can prevent many problems. We hope you check out the HCB2 anti-inflammatory grocery list and select a few new items to place in your cart next time you visit the grocery store!

Fight Right Nutrition: Bone Broth

Our Healing Belly Baskets for cancer patients and survivors includes nutrient dense foods that may help to reduce inflammation in the body. These baskets include bone broth, which is full of proteins and minerals that support gut health and overall body function. We all require certain nutrients to thrive and cancer patients and survivors are no exception to this rule! An estimated 1/3 of cancer deaths are caused by cachexia or muscle and tissue wasting (NCI). Easy to digest proteins, like those in bone broth, may help to shut down this wasting in cancer patients!

Bone broth is made from the bones of animals (e.g. cows, chickens, fish) and is typically cooked over low heat for several hours to extract the nutrients from the bones.  It can be bought online, in local stores and some restaurants, but it is also relatively inexpensive and easy to make at home. There are many free recipes available online and broth can be flavored in many ways to accommodate personal preferences.

One easy way to make bone broth is to take a whole chicken, seasoned with unrefined sea salt, and cook it in a crockpot for a few hours on high. When finished, debone the chicken and save the meat for lunch, dinner or other uses! Add the bones back to the liquid in the crockpot, cover bones with water, and add a couple of tablespoons of raw apple cider vinegar (helps to pull the minerals and other nutrients from the bones). Let it simmer on low for about 24 hours. Once cooled, remove bones, strain the broth, go ahead and sip on it, or add to storage containers for later use.

We personally like to make small glass mason jars to store our bone broth in the freezer, so we can take out and drink or add to food when needed. You can also add broth to ice cube trays, freeze, pop out and store in containers in the freezer for later use as well! Some folks also like to use their Instant Pots (pressure cookers) to make bone broth in a shorter amount of time. Check out the recipe below to help get you started: http://ohlardy.com/chicken-bone-broth/.

Want more options for nutrient dense, anti-inflammatory foods? We developed our Fight Right Anti-Inflammatory grocery list for cancer patients, survivors and the general community. Download it here.

How to Change Your Thinking About Exercise

Exercise!  How does this word make you feel?  Energetic or apathetic?  For many of us, the thought of exercising brings up comments such as…”I wish I had time”, or “I can’t, I have bad knees, hips, feet, etc.” or “I really don’t enjoy it” or my favorite “I don’t like to sweat.”  What would happen if we changed our perception about exercise and thought  about exercise as a 30 minute detoxification experience?

At Hitting Cancer Below the Belt (HCB2) we bring up the subject of detoxification in our presentations because it’s a critical piece in achieving health and remaining well.  The lymphatic system is an important system involved in the bodily detoxification process. The lymphatic system is a circulatory system in the body which transports bacteria accumulated in the space between cells and collects waste and cellular debris from tissues.  Nodes in the neck, groin, and armpit help to collect the lymph which is fluid made up from plasma, proteins, foreign particles, and bacteria.

Why discuss the lymphatic system when we originally made a statement about exercise?  Well, the lymphatic system is dependent on muscle contraction and manual manipulation for the system to move!  That’s right, moving/exercising stimulates the lymphatic system.  If you don’t move, you may very well be marinating in your own cesspool of toxins….not good if we want to be well and stay well.

So, let’s think of exercise as a 30 minute detoxification session.  Let’s sweat knowing that you are helping your body to remove harmful invaders and substances that can create inflammation and harm cellular structure.  Finding ways to move each day for 30 minutes or more gives a large boost to our bodily detoxification system.  The body spends more energy in trying to detoxify the body then anything else.  It’s a 24/7 job, and we can either help by moving or hinder by remaining sedentary.

If you feel inspired, join us at the 2018 Boxer Brief 5K, Saturday, June 9th at Stony Point Fashion Park.  The 5K walk/run begins at 8:00am.  It’s an entertaining morning of music, costumes, speakers, prizes, and a kids’ .5 mile run!  The “Caped Colon Crusader” .5 mile run for children under the age of eight is a free activity that begins at 7:45am.  Children are encouraged to dress up in their favorite capes or create a cape for their activity.

Register Now