SOURCE: Cancer Treatment Centers of America(R) at Midwestern Regional Medical Center

Cancer Treatment Centers of America(R) at Midwestern Regional Medical Center

March 02, 2016 04:00 ET

Spring Clean Your Recipes With Healthy Food Substitutions

For National Nutrition Month®, Cancer Treatment Centers of America® at Midwestern Regional Medical Center Offers 10 Healthy Food Substitutions

ZION, IL--(Marketwired - March 02, 2016) -  Eating healthy is an important part of recovery during and after cancer treatment. But beyond those battling the disease, The American Institute for Cancer Research recommends eating a plant-based diet and maintaining a healthy body weight, which may help reduce the risk of certain cancers. That's why, for National Nutrition Month®, Cancer Treatment Centers of America® (CTCA) at Midwestern Regional Medical Center (Midwestern) in suburban Chicago, created a list of the top 10 healthy food substitution tips to help spring clean your recipes.

Registered oncology dietitian at CTCA® at Midwestern Amy Musselman, MS, RD, CSO, believes that March is the perfect time for spring cleaning in the kitchen, and with a little bit of willpower and proper education, a person can make healthier meal choices. "It is important to limit processed foods and move towards a plant-based diet," said Musselman. "Diets high in plant foods contain fiber, phytochemicals and antioxidants. This may reduce the risk of certain cancer types and recurrence."

Below, Musselman offers 10 healthy food substitutions to consider as the spring season draws near:

  1. Move to leaner meats. Eat more chicken, fish or turkey. For chili, which already has a healthy base of beans and tomatoes, try using extra-lean turkey instead of ground beef.
  2. Use veggies in place of main ingredients. A great way to incorporate more veggies is by using them as a baking substitute. For example, use cauliflower as the main ingredient for a pizza crust or riced cauliflower in fried rice.
  3. Freeze fruit for dessert. Grapes, bananas and orange slices are wonderful alternatives to ice cream and other frozen treats.
  4. Substitute baking fats with applesauce, avocados, yogurt, bananas, beans or dried fruits blends. Some items such as puff pastries, pies or Danishes cannot be made without baking fats. For goods that can be substituted, increase the amount of leavening agents (i.e.; baking soda).
  5. Replace refined flours in baked goods with whole grains (quinoa, oats, barley or rice), beans or starches (tapioca, potato, rice or corn).
  6. Limit added sugars. One can of soda contains approximately 39 grams of sugar. This is equivalent to nine teaspoons of sugar! If you need to use a sweetener, use one derived from natural sources, such as Stevia.
  7. Use low-fat ingredients for loaded baked potatoes. Top your potato with broccoli, salsa, low-fat cottage cheese or yogurt rather than sour cream, butter and cheese.
  8. Swap out maple syrup on waffles or pancakes. Fruits or applesauce can still give a sweet flavor, but greatly reduces the amount of sugar.
  9. Reduce empty calorie intake found in juices, punches and alcohol. Flavored or infused waters and tea are good alternatives. Berries and citrus can perk up water.
  10. Remove processed foods from your diet, such as refined grains, chips, cookies, candy, soda, canned goods and pre-packaged meats. Replace these with fruit, vegetables, nuts, nut butters, beans, trail mix, popcorn, guacamole and low-fat cheese.

Eating a plant-based diet may help improve overall health and possibly reduce a person's risk for cancer and other diseases. In addition, it may improve energy, help with weight maintenance and possibly improve overall appearance (i.e., brighter eyes or stronger nails). It's also important to watch portions and eat slowly, savoring each bite. Lastly, couple a healthy diet with roughly 300 minutes of moderate exercise a week.

Musselman provides nutritional support to patients going through cancer treatment at CTCA at Midwestern. For more information about the care Musselman provides, visit

About Cancer Treatment Centers of America®
Cancer Treatment Centers of America® (CTCA), headquartered in Boca Raton, Fla., is a national network of five hospitals that serves adult patients who are fighting cancer. CTCA® offers an integrative approach to care that combines advancements in genomic testing and precision cancer treatment, surgery, radiation, immunotherapy and chemotherapy, with evidence-based complementary therapies that support patients physically and emotionally, enhancing their quality of life while reducing side effects both during and after treatment. CTCA serves patients from around the world at its hospitals in Atlanta, Suburban Chicago, Philadelphia, Phoenix and Tulsa. Consistently rated among U.S. hospitals that deliver the highest quality of care and patient experience, CTCA provides patients and their families with comprehensive information about their treatment options and encourages their active participation in treatment decisions. For more information, visit, and

About Cancer Treatment Centers of America® at Midwestern Regional Medical Center
Cancer Treatment Centers of America® (CTCA) at Midwestern Regional Medical Center (Midwestern) is a landmark in cancer care that uses advanced technology and precision medicine to offer treatment for adult patients battling cancer. The 72-bed hospital combines innovative conventional medical treatments with evidence-based integrative oncology services to deliver whole-person care. CTCA® at Midwestern is a Magnet Recognized® hospital, ranking among the top centers in the nation for nursing excellence. The hospital is accredited by the Foundation for the Accreditation of Cellular Therapy (FACT) at the University of Nebraska Medical Center for demonstrating compliance with the FACT-JACIE International Standards for Cellular Therapy Product Collection, Processing and Administration. CTCA at Midwestern also holds high honors as a Certified Quality Breast Center of Excellence™, recognized by the National Quality Measures for Breast Centers Program™ (NQMBC®). For more information, visit

About National Nutrition Month®
Celebrated each March, National Nutrition Month is an educational campaign sponsored by the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, focusing on providing the general public with healthy eating and lifestyle habits. In addition, Registered Dietitian Day is celebrated on Wednesday, March 9, 2016.

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