Nutrition Requirement During Cancer Treatment

Posted on:4,Sep'19

Posted by: CancerClinics

Tags: Cancer Awareness


 Good nutrition plays a key role in cancer care. First of all, there is sufficient evidence to show that a stronger body has the capacity to resist cancer; hence good nutrition is vital to prevention of cancer.

Furthermore, even when one is going through cancer treatment, good nutrition helps in better treatment outcome.

The Connection Between Nutrition and Cancer

Firstly, sometimes cancer alters the way the body utilizes food. Certain tumours cause the body to not absorb essential nutrients though you might be eating the right food.

Moreover, cancer treatments cause several side effects, which makes it tough to consume food & the right nutrition. The side effects of surgery, chemotherapy & radiation therapy include diarrhea, vomiting, pain, constipation and sometimes-mental health effects such as depression. These side effects make it very hard to consume food appropriately.

Two of the most common malnutrition-related side effects that cancer treatments cause are:

• Anorexia
Anorexia is the loss of appetite or desire to eat food. This is a common side effect of cancer treatment and a common cause of malnutrition among cancer patients. Anorexia could have occurred at the time the cancer is diagnosed itself. Hence, one of the symptoms of cancer includes extreme weight loss.

• Cachexia

Cachexia is marked by loss of appetite, muscle atrophy, weight loss and weakness.

Is The Weight Loss An Alarming Sign?

The weight loss and malnutrition during cancer treatment needs to be addressed and corrected. This will ensure that the treatment has better outcomes.

• During treatment, monitor weight change regularly to ensure the patient is not suffering from conditions such as anorexia or cachexia.
• The patient must eat right kinds of food to counter malnutrition-causing side effects.
• If required medication needs to be prescribed to manage malnutrition-causing side effects
•Certain conditions (certain types of surgery for example) make oral consumption downright impossible. In such cases, alternative methods such as enteral nutrition (feeding through a tube) or parenteral nutrition (where nutrients are directly given into the blood stream) should be employed.

Also Read:

Food, Nutrition and Cancer

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