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New Nutrition and Lifestyle Resource for People Living with and Beyond Cancer

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Leading cancer prevention and survival charity World Cancer Research Fund (WCRF), in partnership with the British Dietetic Association (BDA) Oncology Specialist Group and the National Institute for Health and Care Research’s (NIHR) Cancer & Nutrition Collaboration,  announces the launch of a new digital one-stop hub of frequently asked questions designed to support people living with and beyond cancer

The one-of-a-kind online resource comprises a database of answers to common FAQs people have about diet, nutrition and other lifestyle factors following a cancer diagnosis.

These range from dealing with and managing some of the common side-effects of cancer treatment, whether a vegan diet can delay cancer growth, to how vital protein is and how safe it is to exercise during cancer. The freely accessible content has been reviewed by several experts, ensuring that the advice and information contained in the FAQs are evidence-based.

According to a poll of 1,127 people affected by cancer commissioned by WCRF, over one in two (55%) respondents said neither they nor their family members received any dietary guidance or advice after diagnosis. In addition, only 28% received appropriate support. 

WCRF and its partners will continue to develop new and review existing content as it builds up its bank of available FAQs. The aim is for health professionals to begin to signpost cancer patients to the new content. Patients and carers can also locate the FAQs directly via Google searches.

Rachael Gormley, chief executive at World Cancer Research Fund, said: ‘Following a cancer diagnosis, it can be a postcode lottery as to the sort of dietary advice someone is likely to receive from a healthcare professional. It’s also really challenging to navigate all the information about diet out there, even with support from a professional like a dietitian.’

‘We’re here to help with an accessible, easy-to-use resource which answers all the key questions people may have about what to eat following a cancer diagnosis and how to deal with specific side effects of treatment, such as taste changes.’

Loraine Gillespie, chair of the BDA Oncology Specialist Group, said: ‘As oncology dietitians, we know how many myths circulate about diet and cancer creating confusion for people. This evidence-based resource will be invaluable for patients and health professionals alike.’

Professor Emeritus Sam Ahmedzai, chair of the NIHR Cancer & Nutrition Collaboration, said: ‘We are delighted to have worked with our partner WCRF over the past year to bring out this amazing new resource for people – patients and their families – affected by cancer.’

‘Our remit is to improve the scientific evidence underpinning healthy eating and physical activity for cancer patients at all stages. This new digital hub will now reach out this evidence base to many more people, including health professionals.’

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