image

Nutrition for cancer patients

Whether you’re newly diagnosed, in the middle of treatment or navigating post-cancer recovery, looking after your diet can help boost your immune system and eat healthily while you’re unwell.

Food might be the last thing on your mind when you’re facing a serious illness, but there are a few things worth considering.

Food safety

Cancer and chemotherapy weaken your immune system making you more susceptible to flu and food poisoning. During and after treatment it’s important to be especially vigilant about food safety. Use foods before the use-by date, store foods at the correct temperature, cook foods thoroughly and wash your hands before handling food to minimise the risk of food poisoning as much as possible. Read more about this topic here.

Keeping a healthy weight

A healthy weight is an important aspect of a healthy lifestyle, and when you have cancer it’s particularly important. If you’re overweight, losing weight gradually by eating only as much food as you need and being as physically active as is realistic will help. Sometimes during chemotherapy cancer patients lose their appetite or have trouble keeping weight on; speak to your doctor about your concerns if you begin rapidly losing weight.

Getting as much energy and protein in your diet will help you gain or maintain your weight. Find more information about preventing weight loss here.

When you don’t have an appetite

A lack of appetite is very common during cancer treatment and you may even find eating makes you feel nauseous or makes food taste unpleasant. High-calorie and nutrient-rich foods should be your priority. Instead of waiting until you’re hungry, schedule meal time and eat small meals throughout the day rather than large ones. Nuts, beans, seeds, cooked cereals and avocado are all healthy foods that provide calories and plenty of nutrients even when you aren’t eating much.

Low fibre foods

Depending on your treatment your doctor may advise low-fibre foods to rest your bowels or to help offset diarrhoea. Eggs, tender cuts of meat, tofu, fish and shellfish, white bread and dairy are all examples of foods you may prefer. Read more about low fibre foods from the American Cancer Society.

 Supplements

Taking vitamins and supplements can be a contentious issue. Before you start taking any supplements be sure to speak with your doctor – though there is lots of information online about boosting your immune system with supplements for cancer patients, it’s always best to speak with your GP. There may be something about your illness or treatment that means it’s not advisable for you to take additional supplements that aren’t prescribed.

Do you know any good resources for cancer nutrition? Share your wisdom in the comments below. 

 

 

Disclaimer
All content on Silversurfers.com is provided for general information only, and should not be treated at all as a substitute for the medical advice of your own doctor or any other health care professional. Silversurfers will not be responsible or liable for any diagnosis made by a user based on the content on www.silversurfers.com and we are also not liable for the content of any external websites or links from or to Silversurfers to any other websites. Please always consult your own doctor if you’re in any way concerned about any aspect of your health.

 

The following two tabs change content below.

Rachel - Silversurfers Assistant Editor

Hello there! I’m Rachel and I’m the Assitant Editor for Silversurfers. I work behind the scenes to bring interesting, informative and entertaining subject matter to the Silversurfers community. I hope you enjoy the features we have shared with you. Please feel free to comment below and share your thoughts with us, we love to hear from you!

Latest posts by Rachel - Silversurfers Assistant Editor (see all)

Leave a Comment!

Not a member?

You need to be a member to interact with Silversurfers. Joining is free and simple to do. Click the button below to join today!

Click here if you have forgotten your password
JackieG8
16th May 2018
1
Thanks for voting!
My friends oncology nurse told her not to worry about her diet as long as she ate fresh fruit and veg, organic if she could afford it, a plain good diet, properly cooked......with nothing on her plate that her grandmother wouldn’t recognize! Very sound advice indeed, for all of us, sick or well.

Community Terms & Conditions

Content standards

These content standards apply to any and all material which you contribute to our site (contributions), and to any interactive services associated with it.

You must comply with the spirit of the following standards as well as the letter. The standards apply to each part of any contribution as well as to its whole.

Contributions must:

be accurate (where they state facts); be genuinely held (where they state opinions); and comply with applicable law in the UK and in any country from which they are posted.

Contributions must not:

contain any material which is defamatory of any person; or contain any material which is obscene, offensive, hateful or inflammatory; or promote sexually explicit material; or promote violence; promote discrimination based on race, sex, religion, nationality, disability, sexual orientation or age; or infringe any copyright, database right or trade mark of any other person; or be likely to deceive any person; or be made in breach of any legal duty owed to a third party, such as a contractual duty or a duty of confidence; or promote any illegal activity; or be threatening, abuse or invade another’s privacy, or cause annoyance, inconvenience or needless anxiety; or be likely to harass, upset, embarrass, alarm or annoy any other person; or be used to impersonate any person, or to misrepresent your identity or affiliation with any person; or give the impression that they emanate from us, if this is not the case; or advocate, promote or assist any unlawful act such as (by way of example only) copyright infringement or computer misuse.

Nurturing a safe environment

Our Silversurfers community is designed to foster friendships, based on trust, honesty, integrity and loyalty and is underpinned by these values.

We don't tolerate swearing, and reserve the right to remove any posts which we feel may offend others... let's keep it friendly!