The Budwig diet is an unproven treatment for cancer developed by Dr. Johanna Budwig, according to Memorial Sloan Kettering Cancer Center. There are no large clinical studies that can confirm the effectiveness of this treatment, as of 2015.
The Budwig diet requires participants to eat multiple servings of flaxseed oil and cottage cheese every day. The diet allows vegetables, fruits and juices but prohibits meat, processed food and sugar. The Budwig diet also forbids some dairy products. The belief behind this diet is that the combination of these foods improves cellular function. There are variations of this diet, and some recommend using a coffee enema and getting excessive exposure to the sun.
Although a diet consisting of a lot of fruit and vegetables can have health benefits, the Budwig diet's many restrictions can lead to nutritional deficiencies. There is no proof that polyunsaturated fats, such as omega-3 present in flaxseeds, can prevent or treat cancer in humans, although they do show anti-cancer properties.
Spending too much time in the sun can cause sunburn and skin cancer, and coffee enemas can cause infections and burns. Excessive flaxseed consumption can cause side effects such as gas, constipation and stomach aches. It can also cause frequent bowel movements. People who are pregnant or suffer from bleeding disorders should especially avoid this diet as it can increase health risks.