Chemotherapeutics are toxic medications and have a number of side effects. The most present is nausea. Additionally, people who are administered chemotherapeutics lose appetite and may even complain about diarrhea.
Still even if all of the previous problems are present one should not give up and stop eating. On the contrary he/she may try certain things in order to fight the side effects and supply the body with sufficient amount of nutrients, vitamins, and minerals.
Diet during Chemotherapy
The battle against the loss of appetite may include light physical activities prior the meal. The patient can for example go for a walk. This is a perfect opportunity for one to try new recipes and eat outside in different restaurants. Eating already prepared food is good as in some patients certain smells that are present while cooking can increase nausea and lead to vomiting. This way the meal is already cooked and a patient only needs to eat it. Furthermore, a company will help. Eating with friends and relatives can be stimulating.
Nausea is a common side effect of the chemotherapy and in some patients it is so sever that they cannot eat at all. Other patients can fight nausea up to certain extent. The patients are administered medications that suppress nausea and it is best for them to eat soon after the drug is taken.
The meals should be small and one should eat many times a day. Six smaller meals will be enough. The food should be at hand in case the patient feels hunger.
Since the patients who are given chemotherapeutics do not eat properly they mostly do not fulfill the required daily intake of calories. This means that if well tolerated high calorie food such as meat, milk and dairy products should be present in a diet. Even liquids that contain high amount of calories can be drunk if one cannot eat properly. Fruit and vegetables should be present in a diet as well since most of them supply with necessary vitamins and minerals.
During chemotherapy proteins are excessively used. This means that diet should be rich in proteins and contain more proteins than regular diet. Food that is based only on fruit and vegetables will not provide with plenty of proteins. This is why the patients who are on chemotherapy need to eat meat, eggs and all the products that are rich in proteins such as nuts, beans and legumes. Even protein supplements can be recommended by the doctor.
The intake of water should be increased especially in the beginning of the therapy as additional fluid helps in elimination of the toxic components from the body.
These people are more susceptible to infections. Therefore all those on chemotherapy should eat only thoroughly cooked food. This way the potential infective agents such as bacteria are killed.