Nutrition: Caroline’s first blog

Friday 04 May 2018

Hi everyone, I am excited to say that I am now the online nutritional advisor for Maggie’s.  This is my first blog for Maggie’s so I thought I would tell you a little about myself before we get going. My name is Caroline Hockley and from as young as I can remember I have enjoyed food and cooking and have been lucky enough to make a career out of it.

I began as a teacher specialising in Food Science and Nutrition for 20 plus years. I thoroughly enjoyed the work I did, but as time went on I got a very disillusioned with the government’s policies which moved the curriculum away from cooking and nutrition, so decided to retire from teaching and study for a 5 year degree in nutritional medicine. Thoroughly absorbing but oh dear essays!!!!!  after so long out of study they were a real uphill struggle.

Any way I got there in the end.  A year or so after qualifying I did a post grad course in nutrition and cancer.   I started working for Maggie’s in Cheltenham and in Oxford over a year ago and experience tells me understanding about good food and eating well  can be very liberating and give a person an essence of control which can easily be lost after diagnosis.

My philosophy is very simple. Eating well not only nourishes the body but feeds the mind and spirit.  

Nutrition and cancer

I always start any talk that I give by getting people to acknowledge that for every cancer cell that they have that is acting abnormally there are billions of normal cells acting normally. Good nutrition will support these normal cells so that they can function to their optimum.  Evidence suggests that people who eat well cope with treatment better have fewer side effects and have a quicker recovery time.

Make any changes slowly don’t add stress!

A really really  important point to try and remember is, that it is best to make any dietary changes slowly and ‘grow into’ new ideas, taking on board those which you can incorporate and letting go of those that you may find too challenging. Only ever take on as much as you feel you can. We are all individuals and will deal with things in our own way, so find a level that feels right for you.  It is important that any changes you choose to make do not create added stress because it has been shown that too much stress can suppress the immune system by lowering our level of white blood cells (lymphocytes) and suppressing the activity of the Natural Killer Cells, which are like our back up troops when it comes to fighting infection.

I get asked many questions ranging from how to eat well, to the dairy debate, to losing weight gaining weight, boosting immunity, what superfoods should I include etc etc. My plan is to answer these questions in the blogs but also to spend time looking at good nutrition, what our cells need to function well and of course some recipes to give you ideas and inspiration.

Before I end this blog I have a small confession to make. I am new at blogging. My degree trained me to think academically and analytically and I know that blogging is relaxed and chatty. Well I am a relaxed and chatty person so bear with me and my blogs will soon start to reflect this.

Blog originally written by Caroline  April 2012

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