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  • Print publication year: 2004
  • Online publication date: August 2009

3 - Nutrition

from Part I - Health promotion


A healthy diet is a concern of people of all ages. Two models that are useful regarding the proper balance of food types are the Food Pyramid and the New American Plate. Many patients are interested in the possibility of reducing cancer risk through diet. The relationship between diet and cancer is controversial and an area of active research. Strong evidence supports an association between obesity and increased morbidity and mortality. Recent research has linked excessive weight and body fat to a dysmetabolic syndrome, which includes diabetes, hypertension, and coronary artery disease. Eating disorders are associated most commonly with younger women-teenagers and young adults. Malnutrition is the most frequently identified determinant of severity of illness and death among cancer patients. Maintaining a balanced dietary intake helps storage of nutrients, decreases risk of infection, and accelerates healing and recovery.

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General dietary information: American Dietetic Association:
Weight control, diabetes, and other medical disorders: National Institute of Diabetes, Digestive and Kidney Disorders:
Dietary supplements: National Center for Complementary and Alternative Medicine:
Calcium: National Women's Health Information Center:
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