Keto and Cancer

Bread, beans, even certain fruits and dairy products—when it comes to the Ketogenic diet, health experts say these options are off-limits! “The ketogenic diet is really looking at a zero to very low carb diet,” explained Julie Hill, an outpatient dietitian with Lee Health.

While the diet started trending as a quick weight loss—Hill says, that’s not what it was designed to do. “Seizures is actually the initial reason why they found this diet to be helpful,” she said.

But after much research, Lee Health’s oncology outreach coordinator Valerie Butram says, cancer patients may also benefit from Ketogenic diet. “If we have patients follow a Ketogenic diet along with their chemotherapy treatments or cancer treatments, then we find that those treatments or those medications are much more effective.”

The diet recommends eating 70 to 80 percent fat and 10 to 25 percent protein. And while it may help with cancer treatment, health experts say, it’s not clear if it will help to prevent cancer. “More plant-based, less processed, more healthy types of fats are fine to incorporate, lean proteins,” recommended Butram.

While it’s important to maintain a healthy diet and lifestyle, Butram says the key to cancer survivorship is early detection.

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Lee Health in Fort Myers, FL is the largest network of health care facilities in Southwest Florida and is highly respected for its expertise, innovation and quality of care. For more than 100 years, we’ve been providing our community with personalized preventative health services and primary care to highly specialized care services and robotic assisted surgeries. Lee Health – Caring People. Inspiring Care.


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