Foods to avoid with lymphedema?


Question from Katherine: Are there any foods that are wise to avoid if you have lymphedema?
Answers - Cyndi Thomson, Ph.D., R.D. A lower salt diet may be helpful, but the research has not been done. To lower your salt intake or your sodium intake, avoid salty foods: canned vegetables, soups, etc., processed foods such as hot dogs, lunch meats, and unfortunately even olives and pickled beets are high in salt.
Marisa Weiss, M.D. It's also probably a good idea to avoid a high protein diet because this can make the situation worse. A balanced diet is best.
Cyndi Thomson, Ph.D., R.D. Be sure you're engaged in physical therapy or some kind of medically supervised exercises that will help reduce this problem.
Marisa Weiss, M.D. Avoid regular use of diuretics (water pills) to manage lymphedema. This leads to loss of salt and minerals to your body and can make things out of balance. There are better ways to deal with this condition. Be sure to check out other pages in our site on managing lymphedema.

On Wednesday, January 19, 2005, our Ask-the-Expert Online Conference was called Nutrition and Weight. Cyndi Thomson, Ph.D., R.D. and Marisa Weiss M.D. answered your questions about nutrition and weight.

The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of Breastcancer.org. A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.

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