Certain symptoms of cancer can make proper nutrition extremely difficult for a patient. However, good nutrition assists the body in fighting off infections and keeping the patient healthy enough to withstand treatment such as chemotherapy and radiation. With the proper combination of vitamins, minerals, carbohydrates, lipids (fats) and proteins, patients can improve their quality of life and strengthen their already weakened immune system. It is important for patients to monitor their weight carefully-not only ensuring that they are not overweight, but to not be underweight as well.
Following the right diet and nutrition guidelines during your treatment can help you:
- Support your immunity
- Preserve your lean body cell mass
- Rebuild your body tissue
- Decrease your risk of infection
- Improve your ability to tolerate treatment
- Improve your quality of life
It is important to eat foods that will strengthen the immune system such as cruciferous vegetables like broccoli, and fruits, which naturally have a high amount of fiber.
- Alcohol in excessive amounts
- Tobacco products
- “Bad” fats such as saturated and trans fats
- Processed and prepackaged foods
- Fast food
- Buffets (higher chance of picking up bacteria)