Cancer Treatments May affect Nutrition – What to Know
Food is life. You've heard these three simple words many times, but if you've been diagnosed with cancer they take on a whole deeper meaning. Ironically, the disease can interfere with nutrition at the time you need it most. Use these helpful guidelines to create a healthy eating plan with your doctor.
Why good nutrition is a valuable weapon against cancer
Food is more than just fuel to run your body's engine. Nutrients in your diet protect and renew tissue cells, maintain your weight for maximum strength, and boost your immune system. A well-balanced diet improves quality of life and may even aid your chances of recovery.
Cancer can alter the digestive process
Certain tumors, especially those found in the stomach or intestines, produce chemicals that can limit the absorption of nutrients. While you might feel that you're ingesting a sufficient amount of calories and nutrients, your body may not be able to use them fully.
Side effects of cancer and its treatment can affect appetite and eating
It's not unusual for cancer patients to experience vomiting, diarrhea, dysphagia (difficulty with swallowing), and other side effects that disrupt eating and prevent healthy snacking, particularly when undergoing treatment. Psychological effects like depression and anxiety can also reduce appetite.
Discuss any diet and nutrition concerns with your doctor
Don't get discouraged if you have problems getting enough food and nutrients. Medicine and other therapies are available to help you meet your nutritional needs.
Our non-toxic immuno-oncology therapies are personalized to incorporate your individual lifestyle elements, including diet and nutrition, environment and genetic predisposition. Visit our website to learn more about the Issels® difference.