Cancer Nutrition Tips

People with cancer often suffer from side effects such as weight loss that even borders on malnutrition. These are serious threats to a person who is battling such a serious form of cancer as mesothelioma. Therefore, a well-balanced diet is essential. Many doctors suggest eating a greater number of small meals throughout the day - up to six. Cancer patients also need much more protein than healthy individuals.

Other tips:

  • Try not to fill up on liquids
  • Avoid fatty and fibrous foods
  • Eat bland foods if you feel nauseous
  • Remember BRAT if you are dealing with diarrhea -
    bananas, rice, applesauce, and toast are great ways to prevent dehydration

Monitoring Stress

Patients diagnosed with terminal cancer undergo dramatic changes physically and psychologically. Sometimes these changes directly impact a patient's health by spurring cancer growth. Several factors influence cancer progression such as side effects from therapy, immunosuppression, and even stress, which has both emotional and physical components.

Stressors create and escalate stress. Many types of stress activate the body's endocrine (hormone) system, which in turn can alter the way the immune system (the body's defense against infection and disease, including cancer) functions. As one example of the immune system's soldiers, natural killer cell (NK cells), often are important in the body's first defense against abnormal cells, including cancer cells that threaten one's health, serving to destroy these cells.

Prolonged stress can be detrimental for cancer patients physically, emotionally, and mentally. Skills such as learning, memory recall, and performing small daily tasks may become affected. It is important to keep stress at a minimum to avoid some of these indirect problems.

Spiritually Coping

Many people find it valuable to practice spirituality during times of sickness, even if they have not previously done so. Spirituality can make people more able to cope with the discomforts and limitations of mesothelioma.

Staying Fit

Mesothelioma and its common treatments, such as chemotherapy, can make a person incredibly weak. However, staying active is still incredibly important. The type of fitness routine you choose should be moderated by your doctor and should be tailored to meet your unique situation.