Best nutrition may help you a lot to get rid of cancer while treating it!!
The main nutritional goals during cancer therapy include getting enough: Fluids to stay hydrated, Energy & nutrients from healthy foods. Protein to help maintain lean body.
Every patient is different. What works for some may not work for others. If there’s a problem with swallowing or appetite, we adapt to what you find appealing and what is comfortable for you to eat.
Many patients can follow a normal, healthy diet
If you don’t have nutrition-related side effects from your cancer treatment that limit your ability to eat and food, you can follow a generally healthy diet that includes:
- Fruits and vegetables.
- Whole grains.
- Nutritious fats.
- Lean protein.
- Convenient foods that provide nutrients
If you suffer side effects from treatment like fatigue & digestive problems, it is helpful to include foods that take little or no preparation and are easy to eat. I don’t mean junk food full of empty calories, but more convenient choices that still provide the nutrients you need.
Here are suggestions my patients tend to like:
- Fresh fruit: The best choices are a fruit that is refreshing, easy to eat, and high in water content. Melons, berries, pineapple, bananas, pears, & canned or jarred fruit in their own juices are all popular.
- Yogurt: It’s easy to eat and promotes healthy digestion. Choose unsweetened varieties. You can add berries, cinnamon, or slivered almonds to flavour.
- Hot or cold cereal: Anything from oatmeal to steel-cut oats to oat bran is a good hot choice. Prefer it cold? Your best choices include puffed brown rice, shredded wheat, and granola made with ingredients you’d find in your own kitchen (no corn syrup or hydrogenated oil). Rice-based cereals are particularly good if you are having digestive difficulties.
- Peanut butter or cheese: Choose whole-grain crackers for fibre (if appropriate) and protein. Look for 100 percent peanut butter made without added oils.
- Whole grains: Eat whole-grain bread and crackers — be sure it says “100 percent whole grain” on the package. Whole grain promotes regularity and digestive health; too much refinement can strip away fibre, protein, and other nutrients.
- Meats and poultry: Look for whole, unprocessed meats without nitrates. Rotisserie chicken is a convenient choice, as are chicken or tuna
Food safety tips
Finally, preparing and cooking food safely is an extremely important piece of the puzzle. Keep in mind these tips:
Cook meat, poultry, fish, and eggs to proper temperatures (visit the USDA’s website for specific guidelines).
Wash fruits and vegetables.
Clean hands/sink/surfaces/cutting boards.
Be aware of food safety at restaurants.