Monday, July 23, 2012

Nutrition and Cancer Treatment: A guest post by Jillian McKee

I am glad to have Jillian McKee on my blog as a guest writer today. Here is some more healthy living for those who need it the most.

I was pleasantly surprised when she wrote to me one day about writing a guest post for Healthfood Desivideshi. She works as a Complementary Medicine Advocate at the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance and works on alternative medicine and complementary methods to be practiced along with the traditional cancer treatment. She wrote to me that she has been researching and writing about how beneficial eating healthy and living a healthy lifestyle is for someone going through the battle of Cancer. 

On the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance Blog she has written an article I particularly liked. It is about how spirituality can be practiced and followed during the course of cancer treatment for better results. It actually helps with any kind of physical ailment, helping to connect us with our own body, mind and soul I believe.

Thanks to Jillian for working so diligently in this field. Here is her article for the readers of Healthfood Desivideshi...Read on..

Nutrition and Cancer Treatment

A healthy diet is hard to follow if cancer treatment side effects make it uncomfortable to take in
any type of food at all, let alone food with a high nutritious value. As the treatment kills the cancer
cells, some of the healthy cells in the body are compromised. At times this will affect the ability
and willingness to follow a proper diet.

The types of side effects that cancer treatments may cause depend on what type of cancer has
been diagnosed, whether breast cancer or a rare form of cancer like mesothelioma. The area of
the body that is affected by the cancer and the dose of the treatment also play an important part.
Some side effects don’t show up immediately, so treatments that only are given for a short
duration may not cause discomfort, but if they are continued over a longer period of time can
appear and interfere with healthy eating habits.

One of the side effects of some types of cancer treatments include dental and gum problems or
sores in the mouth or throat that make it painful to eat the variety of foods that are necessary in a
well balanced diet. Bring these difficulties to the attention of the medical care provider. It may be
possible to treat the side effects to help bring enjoyment back to meal time. While the problem
persists, a nutritionist can advise liquid meals or other types of supplements that will make sure
that you are getting nutrients and calories that your body needs.

Exhaustion or depression can make it difficult to eat the proper types of food, even if the patient is
lucky enough to have help in the preparation. If the person who is undergoing cancer treatment is
expected to shop for groceries and prepare the meal as well, these symptoms may lead to entire
meals being skipped by the patient who just can’t find the strength to meet the tasks.

Some cancer treatments can affect the way the patient processes tastes and smells. This can
mean that food will be very unappetizing. When the ability to eat is impaired because of side
effects that give foods a horrible taste or odor, steps must be taken to find ways to encourage the
patient to eat. Before meals are skipped, further risking health, consult a medical care provider
and ask for referrals and support.

Constipation, diarrhea, nausea and vomiting that many patients suffer during the course of
cancer treatment may make them hesitant about eating certain types of food. It’s possible that the
doctor can intervene to treat the symptoms to relieve the discomfort and allow the patient to
follow a nutritious diet.

After the treatment is over, many of the side effects will go away on their own over time. Many
side effects, including those that interfere with a healthy diet can be controlled. If one type of
medication doesn’t work, let the health care provider know so that another type can be offered.
For more information on healthy eating while dealing with cancer please visit- The American
Cancer Society.

1 comment:

  1. Good to know about this type of cancer. Nice article.