Stomach, as a main organ of digestive system, plays an important role. While stomach cancer treatment, which may include surgery or chemotherapy, often affects patients’ appetites and the way they digest food. Many patients may experience a poor appetite, weight loss, stomach pain, and feeling full early, which can make it difficult to adhere to their regular diet. Cancer experts of St. Stamford Modern Cancer Hospital Guangzhou offer advice for maintaining a healthy diet while being treated for stomach cancer.
Eat a balanced diet
After surgery or during treatment for stomach cancer, modifying a balanced diet is important for the patient. The diet should include lower fiber, softer fruits; cooked vegetables; and less fibrous lean proteins, such as fish instead of shellfish, eggs in place of steak, or smooth nut butters instead of raw nuts.
Minimize processed foods
Cut back on meats such as bacon, sausage, and deli meats, which can increase the risk of colorectal cancer. It’s also smart to avoid processed foods including candy, packaged snack foods, soda, and other sweetened beverages, which provide few nutritional benefits.
Eat smaller, more frequent meals
Many people with stomach cancer experience loss of appetite or gastrointestinal discomfort, and eating smaller meals can help. Instead of having three larger meals, try eating six smaller meals a day and maintaining an adequate calorie intake by adding calorie-dense foods. Try peanut butter on crackers, add olive oil to soup, or put avocado in a smoothie.
Try liquid snacks
Liquid snacks, such as smoothies, may help when you have a poor appetite or feel full quickly, and there are many ways to vary these recipes. Try an avocado-berry, green tea, or blueberry smoothie.
Limiting your intake of alcohol, caffeine, carbonation, and spicy foods may also help limit side effects of treatment.
Nutrition can help manage certain side effects of treatment and support a healthy immune system, as well as promote an overall healthy lifestyle.
*Surgery, in addition to the appropriate chemotherapy and radiotherapy, are effective in treating early cancer, but certain patients in late stage of cancer may not be tolerate surgery well as they can be relatively weak. A combination of carefully planned minimally invasive therapy, chemotherapy or radiotherapy can effectively reduce the side effects and discomfort of treatment and may help patient get better efficacy.