What You Should Eat During Cancer Treatment

Blueberries, foods that help

When you are going through cancer treatment all focus should be on keeping your body as healthy as possible.  Cancer treatment attacks cells in your body so that it can rid it of cancer.  While that is necessary, it can be incredibly hard on the body so it is imperative that you care for your body in any way possible.  Though treatments may make you feel ill, unwell and exhausted, caring for your body through good nutrition and physical activity is an important tool in the battle against cancer.  When you are going through treatment, proper nutrition can feel daunting, especially if you feel nauseated or exhausted.  But, proper nutrition can provide added strength, potentially help treatment be more effective, and help improve your overall outlook after treatment.

Proper nutrition during cancer treatment focuses heavily on healthy vegetables, fruits and lean proteins.  As much as possible, it is important to opt for healthy foods.  Though, if you are ill and very few things sound good, whatever you can stomach is better than nothing.  While being treated for cancer, it is not the time to have an extreme diet, it is the time for a well-rounded, nutritious diet.  Half of your plate should be filled with fruits and vegetables, and the other half grains and proteins.  For proteins, focus on lean meats such as chicken or fish.  Focus on eating high-calorie foods that will provide natural fuel to your body.  Low fat dairy and dairy alternatives also provide a calorie boost that is healthy and delicious.  Whole grains and starchy vegetables are filling and will provide your body with much needed energy.

The key to getting nutritious meals in throughout the day, regardless of hectic schedules and treatment appointments, is to plan ahead.  If you have the energy, or have a support system in place that can help you, prepare some meals ahead and place them in the refrigerator or freezer.  That way, when hunger does strike, you can quickly grab a meal and eat it.  When you are exhausted, you will not have to worry about cooking, you can grab a meal and eat it.  Pre-pack lots of small, nutritious snacks that you can either keep at home or that can travel with you.  Again, this helps by keeping nutrition right at hand for the moment that hunger strikes.  This will help you avoid some nausea and keep your energy up throughout the day.  Finally, when eating during cancer treatment, it is important to avoid excessive amounts of processed food or added sugar.  Things like sweetened beverages, yogurts, cereals, and baked goods may sound good but they will not give you the vital nutrients that you need during this time.  Sugar can suppress the immune system and will provide no help to your fighting body. Additionally, avoid red meats and trans fat (known to promote cancer growth) to ensure optimal health.  For additional nutritional advice during cancer treatment, consult your physician who can offer advice based on your personal health history.

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