“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.”
Increase in cancer incidence
A cancer diagnosis is a life-changing event for both patients and the people around them. For many reasons, the incidence of cancer is expected to rise over the coming years. An aging population, urbanization, a decrease in exercise, obesity and smoking all contribute to the increase in numbers.
Why do cancer patients lose weight?
One of the most common physical changes experienced by cancer patients is weight loss; in fact, it can be one of the first signs that something is wrong. One in three patients is likely to lose weight at some point during their illness3. There are lots of reasons for this, including reduced food intake due to poor appetite, nausea or swallowing problems, as well as metabolic changes caused by the disease itself and/or its treatment.
The link between undernutrition and recovery ('clinical outcomes') is well established. For example, a lower body mass index (BMI) can reduce the effectiveness of cancer treatment, leading to higher hospital readmission rates and often a lower quality of life.
Nutricia’s role in oncology
Nutricia works hard to make a positive and proven difference to patients' lives, by supporting patients, carers and societies throughout their journey with cancer and helping to deliver a better quality of life. We do so by collaborating with societies like ESSO (European Society for Surgical Oncology), ESMO (The European Society for Medical Oncology), ESPEN (European Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition), hospitals and cancer patients.