Thursday, June 28, 2012

Guest Post - Jillian McKee

Hello friends!  Today I have a special treat for you. Jillian McKee is a cancer activist and asked if she could share a little bit about cancer and the foods we eat. I thought this was something I could learn a little more about myself and wanted to share her article with you.

Jillian McKee works as the Complementary Medicine Advocate at the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance.

Good Nutrition Strengthens the Body During Cancer Treatment and Recovery
Cancer is a disease characterized by cells that undergo rapid multiplication. It happens when certain cells loose basic control functions that regulate cell division. As cancer cells divide, they begin to absorb more nutrients otherwise needed by healthy cells. Eventually cancer cells develop a mass called a tumor. Medical science has developed treatments that are proving more successful in slowing and even reversing cancer. However, to improve potential success, the patient must play an important role by maintaining a positive attitude and keeping the body strong by supplying basic nutritional needs. Good nutrition helps maintain healthy cells and tissue during and after treatment.
The body requires a mix of nutritious foods to aid the battle against cancer. Carbohydrates supply the energy requirements of the body. Proteins supply important raw materials for maintaining muscles. Antioxidants, like vitamin C, are important for removing cell waste called free radicals, a byproduct of normal and cancer cell function. However, eating properly is not always easy for people with cancer. For example, mesothelioma is a form of cancer that affects the lining around the lungs, heart and abdomen. Peritoneal mesothelioma side effects include nausea and loss of appetite. Any forms of cancer that affect the abdominal region, intestines and stomach similarly inhibit the desire to eat. The resulting loss of appetite is called anorexia. The extensive multiplication of cancer cells steals important nutrients away from healthy cells. Therefore it is important to consume enough nutrition even when it is difficult.
The National Cancer Center provides valuable information about nutrition before, during and after cancer treatment at.
The best sources of antioxidants are fruits and vegetables. A common rule is to eat 5 servings each day incorporating different colors. Different types of antioxidants are often associated with color. Fruits not only supply antioxidants, they are also a good source of carbohydrate supplying sugars. Proteins are found in foods like milk, cheese and eggs. Ice cream is also a dairy product and a source protein. Pasta, bread and rice provide a good source of carbohydrates and relatively easy on the digestive system. In cases where nausea is associated with constipation, cereals add fiber to aid digestion.
The National Cancer Center summarizes the important of eating sufficiently to maintain health and strength when undergoing cancer treatment and throughout recovery. However, some forms of cancer reduce appetite. In patients who find eating difficult, it is recommended to consume foods relatively bland such as grains, fruits and dairy products. Eating less more often could help reduce feeling nauseous.
Cancer treatments are becoming more successful particularly when diagnosed early. Good nutrition is not a cure. However, eating properly provides the necessary ingredients that help the body fight during treatment. Good diet not only helps in cancer treatment, it also helps with prevention and improves quality of life.


Hope you enjoy!


Saturday, June 16, 2012

A Taste Of Russia

Last week I had the opportunity to travel to Russia to work with orphans. I still can’t believe that it has already come and gone. It was such a blessing to be able to go and work with Change30. I feel that we accomplished a lot and am ready to return as soon as I can. Matt and Jackie, the founders of Change30, have such big hearts and are doing so much for the Russian orphans to make sure they are equipped for the big world. Check out their website to see all the exciting things they are doing.

I thought about you all while I was gone and took several pictures of the food I ate. This trip was a different experience than the other 2 trips I’ve taken over there. We stayed in the city and had breakfast everyday at the hotel. They made one meal and everyone received the same meal. See what we had:

The first morning I walked in and sat down and they placed this in front of me. I immediately got a little nervous. I starting thinking about what snacks I brought because I thought I was going to have to eat something else. It turned out to not be that bad and I finished about half of it. It’s millet, and a mystery meat hot dog with homemade basil ketchup. The hot dog tasted like bologna. They mix several of their meats together so it could have been a combination of several different things.


The coffee was amazing! It was freshly ground espresso with cream.


The next morning we had oatmeal, bread with sandwich meat and cheese, and a roll stuffed with sautéed cabbage and onions. The oatmeal was delicious, it was a little sweet and probably had a ton of butter. I tried the cold sandwich but couldn’t finish it and took a few bites of the roll. The roll was cold and I wasn’t too fond of the cabbage and onions inside.


The following breakfast was one of my favorites! It was crepes stuffed with beef/pork, sour cream and an ice-cream bar. The crepes were delicious and who doesn’t want ice-cream for breakfast.


The following breakfast was dumplings stuffed with mashed potatoes with sour cream and another cold sandwich. The dumplings were good! They eat a lot of potatoes, as you will see during lunch time.


Lunches and most of our dinners were eaten at the orphanage. Lunch was a little larger than dinner. Here is an example of one of the lunches. Potatoes, meat footballs (that’s what we called them) and cucumbers and tomatoes. We also had some type of potato soup and bread.



They also served juice with lunch. The juice was wonderful!


I didn’t take too many pictures of dinner just because it was usually a repeat from lunch without the soup. They served coffee and tea during dinner. We did get the opportunity to eat out a few times in the city.

This was ordered at a little café. I was pretty tired of potatoes at this point and wanted a good ole salad. This is a grilled chicken salad with quail eggs. The quail eggs tasted just like regular eggs to me. The cheese was good but I couldn’t figure out exactly what type it was. It had a really soft texture to it like feta. This salad was nice and refreshing. I enjoyed it with a coffee.



This night we went to a restaurant call Tabasco. I ordered chicken quesadillas. They were very similar to our quesadillas except there was less cheese and it focused more on the chicken and red sauce.


We were able to enjoy some Gelato one day and here is what we got! I ordered the coffee desert on the left and the other one was ordered by Alexis. They were so pretty!


And lastly, I was able to experience Joe and the Juice in the Copenhagen airport. I’m now a fan and wish we had one in the US. I had freshly juiced fruit juice and a pesto chicken sandwich. Too bad they are only located in Denmark and London Sad smile


There you have it, a taste of Russia. I can’t wait to return and see my kids again!