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Diet & Nutrition for Cancer Patients Bangalore

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Diet And Nutrition


Nutrition plays a major role before, during and even after cancer treatment. Nourishing the body with the right kinds of food will provide the required strength and help you make you feel better.  Not everyone’s nutritional patterns are affected with cancer and it’s treatment, however, alterations in diet will be necessary.

Benefits of good nutrition

Cancer will alter the way the body will tolerate certain foods and nutrients. The treatment will also affect the intake of food with physical limitations. A healthy diet and eating will benefit the cancer patient:

  • Feeling better
  • Provide the needed strength and energy
  • Helps to maintain the weight of the body to store nutrients
  • Enables the body to better tolerate the treatment side effects
  • Decreases the chances of infection (helps to maintain immunity)
  • Faster healing and recovery

By eating well, it means that a variety of nutrients of carbohydrate, fats, proteins, vitamins, minerals and essentially water must be included in the diet.

Nutrient Description Sources
 
Proteins
 
Proteins are needed for growth, repair and maintenance of the body’s immune system. After cancer treatment be it surgery, chemotherapy or radiation therapy, extra proteins are required to help the body heal and to fight off any infections. 
 
Fish, poultry, meats, eggs, low fat dairy products, nuts, lentils and soya foods
 Fats  Although fats are a small portion of the food pyramid, it plays an important role in nutrition. Fats are a very rich source of energy. The body will break down fats to store energy, insulate the body and to transport certain vitamins through the blood stream.  
Vegetable oils, peanut oil, corn, flax seed, milk, cheese, butter 
 
Carbohydrates
 
Carbohydrates are the fuel to the body. They are the most essential source of energy. Not only does it help in physical activity, but also with proper functioning of the organs. 
 Fruits, vegetables and grains, bread, potato, cereals, corn, peas and beans. 
 
Water
 Water is vital for the functioning of cells. The body may lose a lot of fluid during cancer treatment due to vomiting or diarrhea and become dehydrated (inadequate fluid in the body). If the water is imbalanced in the body, other minerals and vitamins also become dangerously imbalanced. Apart from water in food, at least 2-3 litres must be consumed in addition per day.   
 
Vitamins and Minerals
 Although needed in small amounts, vitamins and minerals are needed for the proper functioning of the body. Most vitamins and minerals are found in naturally in foods, however, they are also available in the form of supplementary tablets and syrups. Throughout the treatment, there may be periodic checks of the vitamins and minerals in the blood. The doctor may also prescribe additional vitamins to boost the immune system.  

It is important to remember to eat for health rather than to eat to fill your stomach. Keep healthy snacks handy and always travel with some food or fruits. It is advised that fruits with thick skin be peeled and eaten. Avoid fruits which have a thin skin. Cook all foods well to prevent any chances of infection. 

Authored By : Dr. Shiva Kumar Uppala

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