Cancer Treatment Centers of America
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Nutrition therapy for breast cancer

nutrition therapy

Nutrition therapy for breast cancer

Some breast cancer patients may experience weight loss due to side effects like nausea. However, weight gain is more common in these patients. This weight gain, in addition to carrying extra body weight, may lead to poor outcomes from treatment. Maintaining bone health and addressing treatment-related metabolic changes that may cause or aggravate symptoms of diabetes are also important.

Our nutrition therapy team is available to work with you to decrease the risk of these complications during your breast cancer treatment. Our registered dietitians may recommend diet modifications based on your breast cancer treatment regimen, body weight, micro-nutrient deficiencies and digestive symptoms. The dietitians may also help you achieve and maintain a healthy body weight during and after treatment, while teaching you ways to incorporate aspects of an anti-inflammatory diet and physical activity into your lifestyle.

Breast cancer nutrition therapy may help during treatment in several ways:

  • To address weight gain and move toward a healthy body weight, your dietitian may recommend an anti-inflammatory diet and physical activity. An anti-inflammatory diet is low in animal fat and processed foods and loaded with vegetables, fruits and other fiber-rich foods.
  • To combat fatigue, your dietitian may recommend high-protein snacks and small, frequent meals rather than large meals. The dietitian may also work with you and your care team to help you find ways to stay active to help reduce fatigue.
  • To help maintain healthy bone mass and reduce the side effects of some treatments, your dietitian may recommend vitamin D supplements if you have a deficiency.

Our dietitians work closely with other members of your care team, including your gastroenterologist and naturopathic clinician. Together, they may recommend supplements and other therapies to support healthy digestion and nutrition, and help you further manage the side effects of breast cancer treatment.

What is nutrition therapy?

Many cancer patients experience gastrointestinal symptoms. The nutrition therapy team works with our patients to help restore digestive health, prevent malnutrition and provide dietary recommendations during treatment. Our goal is to help you stay strong and nourished, so you can continue with your cancer treatment.

Every patient has the option of meeting with a registered dietitian. During this visit, one of our dietitians will give you a comprehensive nutritional assessment to identify daily goals for calories and protein. The dietitian will look at your health history, disease type and treatment plan to recommend nourishing foods during your cancer care.

The dietitian will monitor your nutrition status from the beginning to the end of your cancer treatment, making modifications as needed to help address side effects and prevent treatment interruptions before they arise.

Our dietitians communicate regularly with the oncologists and the other members of the patient's cancer team. Working together in a team environment, all under one roof, allows for an integrated approach to treating cancer. Your dietitian may alert other members of your care team, such as your medical oncologist, to specific nutrition challenges you may be experiencing. Everyone works together to identify solutions designed to meet your individual needs.

We also provide information and classes about healthy eating habits to your caregivers and family members, so you can continue a healthy lifestyle at home.

Nutrition therapy