Frequently Asked Questions
We provide answers to your most common questions grouped under various categories.
The Healthy Eating category features tips and recommendations from Richard Béliveau. Click on a tab to view the list of questions.
Books authored by Richard Béliveau, Ph.D., are sold in bookstores across Quebec. For details on titles, visit the Books page of this website.
Concurrently to his research activities, Richard Béliveau also actively advocates in the media and gives regular public conferences. Visit the Conferences page of this website for details.
Please visit the Conferences page of this website for information on how to book a private conference with Richard Béliveau.
Unfortunately, you cannot contact Richard Béliveau via this website. He dedicates all of his time to research and cannot respond to individual requests.
If you are concerned about your health, need reassurance or additional information regarding cancer prevention and treatment, please contact your personal physician. The health care network also offers access to specialized information.
Radiation therapy and/or chemotherapy generate free radicals that eradicate cancer cells. Recent studies show that supplementing with high doses of antioxidants could neutralize these free radicals, thereby reducing the efficacy of treatments. We strongly advise against taking such supplements during treatment. However, food does not contain enough antioxidants to interfere with chemotherapy. In addition, plant-based foods are not just a source of antioxidants. They are also rich in a variety of anticancer molecules that could interfere with processes that trigger the onset of cancer.
If you’re in a panic from being diagnosed with cancer, your first course of action is to trust and strictly comply with your doctor’s advice. Doctors are highly qualified professionals in their field of expertise and they possess the required insight to select treatments appropriate to your condition.
The nutritional approach for cancer basically focuses on prevention rather than cure, because no single scientific study has been able to demonstrate that food can eradicate an existing cancer. However, eating well does lend a number of benefits for cancer patients: it can help maintain immune function, reduce inflammation, fight fatigue, remain positive, etc.
Furthermore, we can’t exclude the possibility that certain food combinations rich in anticancer molecules could also impact tumor growth, thereby slowing their progression, especially during remission. Although this remains to be proven, there are no contraindications if you add such foods to your daily diet because they contain nutrients essential to health without producing side effects. In other words, don’t bet your life on them, but you have nothing to lose when it comes to fighting cancer using every weapon available to you. With this in mind, the foods listed in our books offer a good starting point for people looking to change their eating habits and include vegetables rich in anticancer phytochemicals in their daily diet.
To reduce the risk of relapse, cancer survivors must adopt an optimally balanced lifestyle combining healthy eating and regular exercise. In its latest report, the World Cancer Research Fund listed 8 recommendations:
- Keep your weight low within the healthy range, i.e. a body mass index ranging from 21 to 23.
- Be physically active for at least 30 minutes every day. Regular exercise positively impacts your general health, while reducing fatigue, anxiety and depression that often afflicts cancer survivors.
- Avoid soft drinks and high-energy foods with high concentrations of sugar and fat (fast food).
- Eat lots of fruits, vegetables, legumes and whole-grain foods. We recommend 5 to 10 portions of fruit and vegetables, specifically those containing high concentrations of anticancer molecules (cauliflower and garlic, berries, green tea, turmeric, red wine, algae, mushrooms, probiotics). These foods could play a key role in secondary prevention by interfering with the growth of tumors that survived the cancer treatment.
- Cut down on red meat (beef, lamb, pork) by reducing your intake to 500 g per week and replace them with fish (ideally omega-3 rich fatty fish), eggs or plant proteins. In addition, completely eliminate deli foods because they significantly increase the risk of cancer.
- As for alcohol, opt for red wine and limit your consumption to 2 glasses for men and 1 glass for women.
- Limit your intake of products preserved in salt (cured fish for example) as well as foods with high salt content.
- Do not ingest supplements or other natural products to prevent cancer relapse.
Websites touting so-called effective cancer treatments are in fact legion (supplements, diets, etc.). Always be wary of remedies that all too often prey on the hardships of patients and their loved ones. Their solutions have not been scientifically tested and their efficacy remains to be proven. Keep in mind that oncologists are dedicated to saving as many lives as possible and the methods used in hospitals reflect the latest and most effective treatments known to science.
The UQAM Foundation was created in 1976 to raise funds in support of training, research and innovation at UQAM. The proceeds from its various campaigns soliciting alumni students, friends, business people, corporations and private foundations help promote the vitality, value and ecosystem of the university, in addition to multiplying grants and funding initiatives available to students.
Nautilus Plus generously launched the Richard Béliveau Fund which helps fund the research of UQAM’s Chair in Cancer Prevention and Treatment. Founded in 2004, the Chair is dedicated to creating a dynamic research program focused on the identification of food-based therapeutic and preventive compounds, which can then be used to decrease the incidence and onset of cancer among the population. Headed by Richard Béliveau, a world authority recognized by both the medical profession and general public, our laboratory was the first to demonstrate anticancer properties of polyphenols from green tea. Our convictions are based on both solid scientific findings and statistical data confirming correlations between populations, diet and the incidence of certain cancers.
A chair is used to formalize a course or program as a means to promote the discipline to which it relates. A chair is usually permanent and headed by a person holding a professorship. However, it may be temporary when created in honour of an exceptional teacher or researcher.
No administration fees are withheld. All donations benefit the cause supported by the donors.
The UQAM Foundation always respects the wishes of donors and is committed to remitting your donations to UQAM’s Chair in Cancer Prevention and Treatment, i.e. Richard Béliveau and his research team.
All website content including text, images, illustrations, videos, graphs, concepts, etc. are protected by Canadian copyright laws.
Articles, columns and information including graphic and multimedia content on this website remain the exclusive property of their respective authors.
You may read, download and print content for educational or personal purposes only. You may also share some content with a third party for non-commercial purposes, insofar as you do not modify the content and clearly indicate “Source: www.richardbeliveau.org”. In case you are sharing electronically, the source must be an active hyperlink that directs readers to this website.
We also encourage you to redirect links to our website. However, it is strictly forbidden to reproduce, modify or share content, in whole or in part, from this website on any medium whatsoever (printed, electronic, website, RSS feed, etc.) without the express consent of the Chair or rights holders.
The content of this website is primarily written by Richard Béliveau and his collaborators, or by UQAM Foundation staff and volunteers who maintain and update this website. Richard Béliveau’s prevention columns were first published by the Journal de Montréal who has authorized us to post them on this website.