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Nutrition therapy for oral cancer

nutrition therapy

Nutrition therapy for oral cancer

Treatment for oral cancer can cause side effects, including weight loss, fatigue, nausea, diarrhea, constipation, low blood counts and increased risk of infection. These side effects may inhibit your ability to stay nourished and interfere with your treatment.

It may be necessary to use a feeding tube while undergoing oral cancer treatment to help you get adequate nutrition. The feeding tube, inserted on a short-term or long-term basis, may help you stay healthy and fed during treatment, and may remain inserted after treatment if necessary. The tube may be easily removed as soon as normal eating is possible.

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

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