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 Sarcoma needs to be personalized to minimize adverse interactions between nutrition (from foods/diet) and treatment, and to improve symptoms.
Foods like Cucumber and Tomato should be eaten when undergoing Doxorubicin treatment for Sarcoma. On the same lines, avoid foods like Parsnip and Spinach with treatment of Doxorubicin for Sarcoma. Additionally, Black Seed contains an active ingredient called Thymoquinone. Thymoquinone has CYP (drug metabolizing enzyme) interactions with Doxorubicin 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 Sarcoma.
What is Sarcoma?
Sarcoma is a group of rare cancers that develops in the bones or other connective or soft tissues. The incidence rate of soft tissue cancer is only 3.5 per 1 lakh people per year. This cancer is commonly diagnosed in people who are about 65 years of age, however, it can occur in people of any age.
Sarcoma has prevalence of certain genetic changes. Some of the genes such as TP53, ATRX, MUC16, and RB1 are known to have genetic abnormalities in this cancer resulting in a change of function.
The genetic abnormalities found in Sarcoma 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 Sarcoma. 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 Sarcoma 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 Sarcoma nutrition may have to be redesigned.
Why Eating Right Matters for Sarcoma?
In Sarcoma, activation or inhibition of some of the biochemical pathways including Cell Cycle Checkpoints, MAPK Signaling, JAK-STAT Signaling, Angiogenesis, MYC Signaling, RUNX Signaling, Notch Signaling, NFKB Signaling, Inositol Phosphate Signaling, Oxidative Stress, Cell Cycle, Small Molecule Transport, Inflammation, Chemokine Signaling, Apoptosis and PI3K-AKT-MTOR Signaling 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 Sarcoma, 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 Doxorubicin treatment for Sarcoma
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 an example of nutrition/diet for Sarcoma considering only one specific treatment- Doxorubicin.
Foods to Avoid
Parsnip : Parsnip contains active ingredients such as Folic Acid, Psoralen, Myristicin and others. Folic Acid interferes with the impact of Doxorubicin in Sarcoma by activating a specific biochemical pathway called PI3K-AKT-MTOR Signaling. Hence, avoid foods like Parsnip with Doxorubicin treatment for Sarcoma.
Spinach : Spinach contains active ingredients such as Citric Acid, Linolenic Acid, Retinol and others. Citric Acid interferes with the impact of Doxorubicin in Sarcoma by blocking a specific biological process called Oxidative Stress. Hence, avoid foods like Spinach with Doxorubicin treatment for Sarcoma.
Foods to Eat
Cucumber : Cucumber contains active ingredients like Beta-sitosterol, Fisetin, Linolenic Acid. Intake of Beta-sitosterol along with Doxorubicin treatment for Sarcoma causes a decrease in a specific biochemical pathway which is called PI3K-AKT-MTOR Signaling, and this is a very positive effect. Cucumber hence should be eaten with Doxorubicin treatment for Sarcoma. (Zhang-Qi Cao et al, Front Pharmacol., 2019; Hui Jun Lim et al, Anticancer Res., 2016)
Tomato : Tomato contains active ingredients like Glucaric Acid, Rutin, Quercitrin. Intake of Glucaric Acid along with Doxorubicin treatment for Sarcoma causes a decrease in a specific biochemical pathway which is called PI3K-AKT-MTOR Signaling, and this is a very positive effect. Tomato hence should be eaten as part of diet with Doxorubicin treatment for Sarcoma. (Prakash Tiwari et al, Biochimie., 2016; Hui Jun Lim et al, Anticancer Res., 2016)
Should I take this Nutritional Supplement for Sarcoma?
Black Seed : Black Seed nutritional supplements contain active ingredients such as Thymoquinone which have CYP3A4 interactions with Doxorubicin treatment, and hence should not be used. Also, Black Seed supplement does not show benefit on other biochemical pathways that could improve the Doxorubicin treatment efficacy in Sarcoma. (Ahmed A Albassam et al, Saudi Pharm J., 2018; Jun-Shik Choi et al, Arch Pharm Res., 2011)
What are the Symptoms of Sarcoma?
In the initial stages, most cancers including Sarcoma may not cause any signs or symptoms. However, as the disease progresses, Sarcoma may start showing symptoms. Following are some of the signs and symptoms that may be caused by Sarcoma.
- A lump
- Weight loss
- Stomach pain
- Bone pain
- A broken bone
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 Sarcoma.
What are the Treatment Options for Sarcoma?
The treatment for Sarcoma 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 Sarcoma include:
- Radiation Therapy
- Targeted therapy
As part of the diet, avoid including those foods and supplements that may adversely interact with the treatments for Sarcoma cancer.
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 Sarcoma.
What food you eat and which supplements you take is a decision you make. Your decision should include consideration of the cancer gene mutations, which cancer, ongoing treatments and supplements, any allergies, lifestyle information, weight, height and habits.
The nutrition planning for cancer from addon is not based on internet searches. It automates the decision making for you based on molecular science implemented by our scientists and software engineers. Irrespective of whether you care to understand the underlying biochemical molecular pathways or not - for nutrition planning for cancer that understanding is needed.
Get started NOW with your nutrition planning by answering questions on the name of cancer, genetic mutations, ongoing treatments and supplements, any allergies, habits, lifestyle, age group and gender.
Personalized Nutrition for Cancer!
Cancer changes with time. Customize and modify your nutrition based on cancer indication, treatments, lifestyle, food preferences, allergies and other factors.
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.