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What should I eat after Cancer Diagnosis?

is a very common question asked.​
Choose food and supplements personalized to your cancer, genes, ongoing treatments and lifestyle.

is a very common question asked. Choose food and supplements personalized to your cancer, genes, ongoing treatments and lifestyle.

Personalized cancer Nutrition Planning for only .

Personalized cancer Nutrition Planning for only​ .

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Which 3 Foods to Avoid for Hypopharyngeal Cancer?

Mar 20, 2021

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Highlights

No two cancers are the same and neither should your nutrition be. The most commonly asked question to dieticians and oncologists globally is “What Should I Eat?”. The answer is “It Depends”. It depends on the type of cancer, current treatment and supplements being taken, age, gender, BMI, lifestyle and any genetic information available. In short – the answer to “What Should I Eat” for Hypopharyngeal Cancer needs to be personalized to minimize adverse interactions between nutrition (from foods/diet) and treatment, and to improve symptoms.

Foods like Basil and Beetroot should be eaten when undergoing Imatinib treatment for Hypopharyngeal Cancer. On the same lines, foods like Amaranth and Anise should be avoided with treatment of Imatinib for Hypopharyngeal Cancer.

Black Seed contains an active ingredient called Thymoquinone. Thymoquinone has CYP (drug metabolizing enzyme) interactions with Imatinib treatment and hence should be avoided.

You get the point – your nutrition needs to be personalized and it needs to be re-evaluated as soon as any of the conditions change. Create and follow a nutrition plan personalized to you to minimize adverse interactions of nutrition for cancers like Hypopharyngeal Cancer.



What is Hypopharyngeal Cancer?

Hypopharyngeal Cancer is a rare cancer that develops in the tissues of the hypopharynx, the part of the throat (pharynx) that lies beside and behind the voice box (larynx). The incidence rate of this cancer is only 1.19 per 1 lakh people per year. This cancer is commonly diagnosed in people who are about 60 – 65  years of age, however, it can occur in people of any age. It is more commonly found in African Americans and Whites as compared to  Asians and Latinos.

Symptoms, Diet and Treatment for Hypopharyngeal cancer

Hypopharyngeal Cancer has prevalence of certain genetic changes. Some of the genes such as TP53, ATF1, LRP1B, and AJUBA are known to have genetic abnormalities in this cancer resulting in a change of function. 

The genetic abnormalities found in Hypopharyngeal Cancer can influence specific biochemical pathways to drive these cancer cells to aggressive growth and survive the ongoing treatment.  In addition, lifestyle conditions or habits like smoking, alcohol consumption and BMI (Body Mass Index) can have a big influence on the response to your physician prescribed treatments for Hypopharyngeal Cancer. Numerous studies have consistently shown that your nutrition/diet – both food and nutritional supplements can adversely affect the treatment or be supportive or play no role. Hence, the triangulation of Hypopharyngeal Cancer genomics, planned or ongoing therapies and lifestyle need to be thoroughly considered to make decisions on what foods and supplements to consider and avoid while designing diet/nutrition plan. Also, it is important to note that when any of these conditions change, like treatment or lifestyle or cancer diagnosis – it may impact the nutrition and the nutrition/diet plan for Hypopharyngeal Cancer nutrition may have to be redesigned.

Why Eating Right Matters for Hypopharyngeal Cancer?

In Hypopharyngeal Cancer, activation or inhibition of some of the biochemical pathways including PI3K-AKT-MTOR Signaling, MAPK Signaling, Cell Cycle Checkpoints, Oxidative Stress, Cancer Epigenetics, Cell Cycle and Apoptosis plays an important role in driving the disease. All foods and nutritional supplements contain active ingredients which have a specific molecular action on different biochemical pathways. Hence, while the intake of certain foods and nutritional supplements as part of the diet may support a specific treatment of Hypopharyngeal Cancer, eating few other foods and supplements may lead to adverse interactions with the treatment or may increase the cancer progression.

Example Foods to “Not Eat” and Eat with Imatinib treatment for Hypopharyngeal Cancer

The nutrition for cancer always depends on the type of cancer, treatments and supplements being taken (if any), age, gender, BMI, lifestyle and any genetic information available. Here we show example of nutrition/diet for Hypopharyngeal Cancer considering only one specific treatment- Imatinib.

Foods to Avoid

Amaranth : Amaranth contains active ingredients such as Beta-sitosterol, Isoquercitrin, Folic Acid and others. Beta-sitosterol interferes with the impact of Imatinib in Hypopharyngeal Cancer by activating a specific biological process called Oxidative Stress. Oxidative stress increases Imatinib resistance. Hence, do not eat Amaranth with Imatinib treatment for Hypopharyngeal Cancer. (Mariam Ammar et al, J Clin Lab Anal., 2020; Tamilselvam Rajavel et al, Scientific Reports., 2018)

Anise : Anise contains active ingredients such as Cynaroside, D-limonene, Luteolin and others. Cynaroside interferes with the impact of Imatinib in Hypopharyngeal Cancer by activating a specific biochemical pathway called MAPK Signaling. Hence, do not eat Anise with Imatinib treatment for this Cancer. (Junli Shao et al, Int J Mol Sci., 2018; Su Chu et al, Blood., 2004)

Foods to Eat

Basil :  Basil contains active ingredients like D-limonene, Vicenin 2 and Eucalyptol. Intake of D-limonene along with Imatinib treatment for Hypopharyngeal Cancer causes a decrease  in a specific biochemical pathway which is called PI3K-AKT-MTOR Signaling, and this is a very positive effect.  Basil hence should be eaten with Imatinib treatment for this cancer. (Shu-Sheng Jia et al, Oncol Rep., 2013; Gloria Ravegnini et al, Cancer Manag Res., 2019; Kyungsuk Jung et al, Cancers Head Neck., 2018)

Beetroot :  Beetroot contains active ingredients like Vitamin E, Folic Acid and Beta-sitosterol. Intake of Vitamin E along with Imatinib treatment for Hypopharyngeal Cancer causes a decrease  in a specific biochemical pathway which is called  PI3K-AKT-MTOR Signaling, and this is a very positive effect.  Beetroot hence should be eaten with Imatinib treatment for this Cancer. (Peng Yang et al, Mol Med Rep., 2016; Gloria Ravegnini et al, Cancer Manag Res., 2019; Kyungsuk Jung et al, Cancers Head Neck., 2018)

Foods to eat and avoid for Hypopharyngeal Cancer

Should I take this Nutritional Supplement for Hypopharyngeal Cancer?

Black Seed : Black Seed nutritional supplements contain active ingredients such as Thymoquinone which have CYP2C9, CYP1A2 and CYP3A4 interactions with Imatinib treatment, and hence should not be used. Hence, do not take Black Seed supplements with Imatinib treatment for Hypopharyngeal Cancer. (Ahmed A Albassam et al, Saudi Pharm J., 2018; Bin Peng et al, Clin. Pharmacokinet., 2005; Amina Haouala et al, Blood., 2011)

Which 3 Foods to Avoid for Hypopharyngeal Cancer?

Foods to Eat After Cancer Diagnosis!

No two cancers are the same. Go beyond the common nutrition guidelines for everyone and make personalized decisions about food and supplements with confidence.

What are the Symptoms of Hypopharyngeal Cancer?

In the initial stages, most cancers including Hypopharyngeal Cancer may not cause many signs or symptoms. However, as the disease progresses, Hypopharyngeal Cancer may show different symptoms. 

Following are some of the signs and symptoms that may be caused by Hypopharyngeal Cancer.

  • Cough
  • Swallowing difficulties
  • Sore throat
  • Changes in voice, such as hoarseness
  • Ear pain
  • Lump/sore that doesn’t heal
  • Weight loss

Though many of these symptoms may also be caused by various other health conditions, consult your doctor if you experience these symptoms to rule out the possible chances of Hypopharyngeal Cancer.

What are the Treatment Options for Hypopharyngeal Cancer?

The treatment for Hypopharyngeal Cancer may be decided based on different factors including the stage and extent of spread of the cancer, cancer characteristics, symptoms, patient’s general health and medical history, whether the cancer can be removed completely by surgery and whether the cancer was just diagnosed or had come back. The treatment options for Hypopharyngeal Cancer include:

  • Surgery to remove a part of the pharynx, or a part of the larynx and pharynx, lymph nodes or other tissues of the neck
  • Radiation therapy 
  • Chemotherapy
  • Targeted drug therapy
  • Immunotherapy
  • Palliative Care

Surgery or surgery followed by radiation is the most common treatment regimen for Hypopharyngeal Cancer. Radiotherapy helps to shrink the tumor. As part of the diet, avoid including those foods and supplements that may adversely interact with the treatments for Hypopharyngeal Cancer.

In Conclusion

The two most important things to remember are that cancer treatments and nutrition are never the same for everyone. Nutrition/diet which includes food and nutritional supplements is an effective tool which is controlled by you, while facing cancer such as Hypopharyngeal Cancer.

“What should I eat?” is the most frequently asked question to cancer dieticians and physicians. The right answer depends upon cancer type, underlying genomics, current treatments, any allergies, lifestyle information, and factors like BMI.

The addon personalized nutrition plan keeps you safe from adverse nutrition interactions.

Get started NOW with answering questions on type of cancer, current treatments, supplements, allergies, age group, gender, and lifestyle information.

Foods to Eat After Cancer Diagnosis!

No two cancers are the same. Go beyond the common nutrition guidelines for everyone and make personalized decisions about food and supplements with confidence.


Cancer patients often have to deal with different chemotherapy side effects which affect their quality of life and look out for alternative therapies for cancer. Taking the right nutrition and supplements based on scientific considerations (avoiding guesswork and random selection) is the best natural remedy for cancer and treatment related side-effects.


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