Home Multiple myeloma – Foods to eat and avoid
Multiple myeloma – Foods to eat and avoid
Multiple myeloma – Foods to eat and avoid

Multiple myeloma is a type of blood cancer that develops in the bone marrow and affects the production of healthy blood cells. It typically affects the plasma, the largest part of the blood, and its ability to develop antibodies. While there is no cure for this cancer, it can be managed by making certain changes in lifestyle. For instance, exercising, having medications, and eating and avoiding certain foods can help keep the disease under control.

Freshly cooked vegetables
Darks greens and starchy vegetables are rich sources of vitamins and minerals that help boost immunity. Those who have been diagnosed with multiple myeloma are also at risk of developing anemia. Doctors advise including more iron-rich foods to reduce the risk of low red blood cell count. One can add broccoli, kale, brussels sprouts, and bell peppers to their means, as they are rich in iron. Additionally, carrots and artichokes are rich in fiber. Fiber boosts digestion and reduces the risk of constipation, a common symptom observed during chemotherapy treatment.

Fresh fruits
Fruits, rich in antioxidants, can counter oxidative stress and boost immunity. Blueberries, raspberries, cherries, cranberries, strawberries, and blackberries are cancer-fighting fruits that help combat the damage done to healthy cells. Also, certain tropical fruits like mango, guava, papaya, and pineapple are recommended to those with this type of cancer. This is because they are rich in iron, which helps manage conditions like multiple myeloma.

Meat and dairy
Lean cuts of meat and low-fat dairy are acceptable foods to eat for multiple myeloma. Note that meat should be cooked thoroughly, and it is best to use low flame cooking techniques instead of grilling, pressure cooking, and charring.

Foods to avoid

Raw vegetables
It is essential to avoid having raw vegetables, as eating them is not healthy for those with multiple myeloma. They can increase the risk of infection and make the immune system weaker.

Raw meat and uncooked fish
Any type of raw meat, be it lean cuts of chicken, turkey, or red meat like pork, lamb, beef, is bad for consumption. This goes for uncooked fish as well. Raw food contains bacteria and contaminants that can weaken the gut, and subsequently, one’s immune system.

Raw dairy and poultry
Uncooked eggs or runny eggs and dairy products that have not been pasteurized should be eliminated from one’s food regimen. Like the foods mentioned above, these may contain bacteria as well.

Medications like Carfilzomib

Carfilzomib (brand name Kyprolis®) belongs to a class of proteasome inhibitors approved by the FDA to treat and manage refractory or relapsed multiple myeloma. The injection is administered intravenously, and once it binds to the infected cells, the medication causes a massive buildup of proteins that destroy the cells from within and help contain the spread of cancer. The dosage of the intravenous injection is adjusted depending on the severity of the disease.