Oncology couple walking

Oncology

Oncology couple walking

Krzysztof’s story

 “I had ignored the symptoms for a long time but finally I couldn’t manage them anymore. I was diagnosed with colorectal cancer. During my illness, my appetite was gone. I was 74kg when I went into hospital – it was so scary.

I saw a leaflet in the hospital about medical nutrition, so my wife asked the nurse about it. The nurse said it could help. The increase in my appetite was a breakthrough. I soon began to eat normally again. The increase of appetite restored my love for life.”

“The increase of appetite restored my love for life.”

Krzysztof - Poland

An introduction to cancer and weight loss

Cancer is a term used to group together a set of diseases that can affect almost any part of our body; it will affect around 1 in 2 people during their lifetimes.A cancer diagnosis can be a life-changing event for both the patient and their loved ones. Both the disease and its treatment can be extremely demanding on the body, taking away strength when the body needs to be at its strongest.4

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Featured

World Cancer Day 2022

World Cancer Day is marked on February 4th each year. Nutricia supports the aims and objectives of the initiative and helps raises awareness, particularly around the positive clinical impact medical nutrition can have on cancer patients, up to 65% of whom will be affected by malnutrition point during their disease5. This year we bring you the story of Jonathan, a cancer patient who benefitted from medical nutrition.

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Cancer and appetite loss

When diagnosed with cancer, loss of appetite may seem a relatively minor issue. But without adequate nutrition, your body is less able to cope with both the cancer and its treatment– reducing the chance of a successful treatment6. Ensuring good nutrition and avoiding weight loss is therefore an essential part of a patient’s treatment and recovery plan.

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Cancer and taste changes

Changes in taste and smell are more than just an unpleasant side effect of cancer treatment. They can stop you eating a healthy balanced diet, potentially leading to weight loss and even malnutrition – at a time when your body needs to be at its strongest.

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Cancer and weight loss

Keeping physically strong during cancer can be tough; the side effects of the disease and its treatment can take a toll on the body, negatively affecting appetite, the way we taste food and even the way our body absorbs nutrients. For many cancer patients (30-80%5) this leads to weight loss. Importantly, the majority of the weight lost by cancer patients is muscle7 – or ‘lean body mass’ – the protective tissue needed to keep the body strong and withstand treatment. Losing a significant amount of weight can even delay treatment8-9.

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The role of medical nutrition in cancer care

Weight loss during cancer, particularly loss of lean body mass, can have a negative impact on the health of a patient, increasing the rate of complications and affecting the success of both treatment and recovery9-11. It is therefore important that cancer patients maintain weight to give themselves the best chance possible. When eating and drinking become difficult due to the disease and/or treatment side effects, medical nutrition may be prescribed by a healthcare professional and can help by delivering all the nutrition a patient needs to support weight12-14.

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Helping patients stay strong for the road ahead

It may be the last thing on your mind, but nutrition is an essential part of cancer care. For more information on how to make sure your body is getting enough of the right nutrition, visit our new dedicated (external) information hub for patients.

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Cancer care

The Nutricia products shown from this point onwards are intended for the nutritional management of diseases and related medical conditions and therefore should be used under medical supervision.

News

ESMO launches new clinical guidelines for management of cancer cachexia

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Integrating medical nutrition in cancer care for more good days

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Importance of sensory alterations for cancer patients with taste alterations