If you have cancer and are going through various chemotherapy and radiation treatments, then you may be extremely worried about your health. And, it may be hard for you to focus on things like food during the cancer treatment process. However, you do need to eat to keep up your strength. To help with this, you can speak with a cancer nutrition specialist. There are a few things that you should ask the specialist at the beginning.
What Foods Should You Avoid?
One of the most important questions that you should ask your nutritionist is what types of things should be avoided in the diet. If you are on a low-microbial diet due to a compromised immune system, then this is extremely important to keep you from getting sick. The professional can tell you about how to avoid raw fruits and vegetables, undercooked meat, unpasteurized cheese, and other food items that are likely to contain microorganisms.
In addition, the professional can inform you of some of the foods that may make you feel more ill when going through treatments. For example, beans and broccoli can create a great deal of gas that can increase feelings of nausea as you go through chemotherapy treatments. Also, heavy foods like meats, fried items, and some cheeses can make you feel full and sick to the stomach.
In addition to food-specific avoidance, the nutritionist can help you understand when certain foods should be avoided. Some calorie-rich foods may be OK to eat in between chemotherapy treatments to retain a healthy weight but not right before a treatment. So, ask for a list of foods that you should or should not eat before, during, and after your chemotherapy.
Should You Consider Meal Replacement Drinks?
Nausea, vomiting, and fatigue can make it extremely difficult to eat properly during cancer treatments. This is one reason why individuals lose a great deal of weight. They simply do not feel well enough to consume the calories they need. This is especially true as the caloric needs increase due to the healing and illness-fighting process.
Since it is so difficult to eat solid foods and to consume calories, many cancer patients drink meal replacement drinks. You want to ask your nutritionist if this is best for you and, if so, what kind of product should you purchase. Your nutritionist will know which drinks contain the necessary calories and nutrients for your needs.
Since meal replacement drinks come in different flavors, you may want to try a few different kinds of the product that your nutritionist suggests to see what you like best.