Low Fiber Foods & Cancer

For today’s post, we have a guest blogger writing a great article about different foods that may or may not be beneficial during cancer treatment. For any individual going through chemotherapy, side effects may vary from person to person and make it difficult to know what to eat. Jillian shares with us some tips on how fiber and other foods interact with the body when undergoing chemotherapy. Jillian can be found at http://www.mesothelioma.com/blog/authors/jillian/bio.htm.

Look for a follow-up post on our favorite cookbooks and nutrient-rich recipes to help manage side effects when undergoing cancer treatment.

Why Low Fiber Foods Are Recommended For Some Cancer Patients

Cancer treatment programs can often require a complete reworking of a person’s lifestyle in order to accommodate for changes in environmental tolerances. Changes in diet are certainly a big part of this. Often, doctors will sit down with their patients before treatment and lay out exactly what they can expect to experience based on past experience.

Dietary requirements are likely to change based on the type of cancer and based on which parts of the body are being affecting at the time. Proper nutrition for mesothelioma patients may vary somewhat from a patient that’s receiving treatment for something like colon cancer.

Because common cancer treatments can affect fast-replicating tissues in the body, it’s typical that cells that make up the lining of the intestines can experience disruptions in their normal life cycle. This can cause bowel irritability and chronic diarrhea for patients that are currently on a chemotherapy regimen. It’s for this reason that many doctors will recommend limiting the amount of fiber in the diet and may recommend that the patient stay entirely away from certain foods.

While individual dietary specifications will largely vary from one patient to the next, most doctors will recommend that their patient avoid things like beans, peas, and corn. These are heavily fibrous and difficult for even a healthy digestive system to process. For protein, it’s recommended that patients stick to eggs and nut-based products like smooth peanut butter. If these aren’t suitable for the patient’s tastes, things like tofu can also be added.

What About Other Foods?

Dairy products certainly aren’t banned from a cancer patient’s diet, but it’s often advised that they be limited to small amounts. It’s common for people that normally enjoy milk or yogurt on a regular basis to feel less tolerant of it while undergoing cancer treatment. Those people should adjust their dairy intake according to what feels most comfortable for them.

While proper dieting can certainly offer a tremendous number of health benefits, it’s important to keep in mind that it probably won’t facilitate the treatment of cancer all by itself, without other forms of treatment. The key idea is to create a diet that gives the body everything it needs to continue functioning normally, but without creating discomforts likely to occur during treatments. After all, the better a patient feels from day to day, the more energy they’re going to be able to devote to getting better in the long run.