Maintaining appropriate diet is a major challenge for throat cancer patients. The problem is exacerbated by swallowing difficulties that develop following chemotherapy, radiation and/or surgery. A soft diet can be easily swallowed by a person diagnosed with throat cancer. When cancer treatment makes swallowing exceedingly difficult, liquid feed is given through a nasogastric tube that passes through the nose into the stomach. In some cases, a tube is inserted directly into the stomach.
Regardless of the process of feeding, a throat cancer patient should receive sufficient nourishment to facilitate speedy recovery. As the sense of smell and taste is often affected during treatment, the meals of the patient should be properly prepared to make them appetizing despite poor sense of taste.
Malnutrition and weight loss are two common problems in cancer patients that significantly reduce the ability of a person to fight cancer. The diet for throat cancer patients should contain nutrients that help to regenerate the healthy cells of the body that are severely damaged during chemotherapy and radiation treatment.
Throat Cancer Patients Diet
The diet of throat cancer patients should contain whole grain cereals or bread, at least five servings of fruits and vegetables, lean meat, fish and low fat dairy. To make these foods easily digestible, prepare purees, soups and stews. However, the diet of a cancer patient need not be bland and boring.
You can try different recipes to make a soft diet palatable. You can cook casseroles, creamy pasta, noodles, scrambled egg, cauliflower cheese, mashed mixed vegetables cooked with extra cheese or butter, dips and desserts such as custard, pudding, yogurt and ice cream.
Eat Vitamin A Rich Food
According to a number of studies, vitamin A plays an important role in preventing cancer. By preventing conversion of the healthy cells into cancerous cells, it reduces the risk of growth of cancer cells.
Moreover, it also helps to increase the longevity of cancer patients undergoing treatment. Yellow and orange colored vegetables are rich sources of beta-carotene, which is converted into vitamin A in the human body.
Diet For Managing Loss of Taste
Loss of smell and taste are common side effects of throat cancer treatment. You cannot enjoy a meal if you cannot sense the taste. Poor sense of taste may be countered by adding foods with strong flavors in the daily diet. Marinating fish and meat with herbs, spices and vegetable oil, adding herbs, lemon juice, spices, garlic and onion to foods may help to improve their taste.
Consume Nutritional Supplement Drinks
To provide extra nourishment to your body, you can take nutritional supplement drinks. These drinks contain carbohydrates, proteins and fats in the right amount that help to meet your calorie requirements.
Supplement drinks are especially needed to prevent weight loss. Available in different flavors, the nutritional supplement drinks are delectable liquid food for throat cancer patients.
Drink Plenty of Fluid
Throat cancer patients should drink sufficient water during the course of the treatment. Besides hydrating the body, water helps to reduce the soreness of the mouth and throat.