Every Nine Minutes.

This one is really personal.  I hesitated to even write about it, but it is too important not to.  It’s off my usual topic of menopause, except in that (as I’ve said before) everything is connected.

Did you know that every 9 minutes, someone in the U.S. dies from blood cancer?  That’s about 160 people a day, and more than 56,000 people every single year. 

One of those was my dad. 

That was five years ago, and I can’t even express how desperately I wish I knew then what I know now: that a whole foods plant-based diet doesn’t just have a protective effect against lymphoma and leukemia, it can work to reverse those diseases as well. 

People that follow a plant-based/vegetarian diet have just half the occurrence of blood cancers as meat-eaters; and one study showed that leukemia/lymphoma sufferers transitioning to a diet including 3 servings of cruciferous vegetables a day had a 42% improved survival rate. 

It really hurt to learn that last stat, because my dad was just 70 when he died.  And I can tell you for sure that none of his doctors (though they were wonderful and caring) ever even mentioned diet; I saw for myself that the hospital food was pretty short on anything green.

But what does that mean for all of us?  We need to pay attention to what we eat so that we can be there for the people we love – it’s our responsibility.  Cruciferous vegetables specifically kill human leukemia cells in a petri dish; green leafy vegetables (both cooked and raw) and citrus have also proven to be protective.  Another study showed that people eating five or more servings a week of leafy greens had half the odds of getting lymphoma that those having just one serving a week.  Curcumin and acai have shown promise in decreasing risk, too.   

There’s no excuse not to eat your vegetables every single day – it can only help.  Your health is entirely in your own hands. 

Don’t do it for me, don’t even do it for yourself – do it for the people you would leave behind.


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