Care Blog

How Home Care Services Can Improve Nutrition During Cancer Treatments

Eating right is essential for everyone, but doubly so for those with cancer. Proper nutrition can help cancer patients gain the strength they need for chemotherapy treatments, guard against infections, prevent body tissue from breaking down, and help rebuild tissue. Good nutrition also helps patients cope with the side effects of cancer treatments and may even be able to help them handle higher doses of certain drugs.

Nutrition recommendations for those with cancer may include eating more higher calorie, higher protein foods. To promote these recommendations, the doctor may suggest increasing intake of foods like milk, cheese, and eggs. Other suggestions might include increasing the use of sauces and gravies, or changing cooking methods to include more butter, margarine, or oil. Sometimes, dietary recommendations for people with cancer include eating less of certain high-fiber foods which can aggravate problems such as diarrhea or a sore mouth.

During treatment, cancer patients may have a loss of appetite. If that is the case, the recommendation is to try to eat any easily-digested foods to try to meet nutritional needs.

On treatment days, patients should:

  • Talk with the nurse to learn about ways to relax if feeling sick before treatment.
  • Learn when it's most comfortable to eat and drink. Some people feel better when they eat a little just before treatment. Others prefer when they have nothing to eat or drink before treatment.
  • After treatment, it's best to wait at least one hour before eating or drinking.

Certain foods and drinks may be easier on the stomach during cancer treatments including:

  • Clear broth
  • Grape juice
  • Baked chicken
  • Crackers
  • Pasta
  • White rice
  • Baked potatoes
  • Bananas
  • Gelatin
  • Yogurt
  • Popsicles

A good diet, rich in nutrients, is essential for people with cancer. All Care’s Medford home care services can help cancer patients plan, shop for, and prepare delicious meals that meet their nutritional needs, and monitor food intake to ensure patients are as healthy as possible. Give us a call at (541) 857-9195 to learn more about how our in-home care services can help provide comfort and relief as you receive your treatments.

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