During radiation therapy, you will need enough calories and protein to prevent weight loss, regain strength, and rebuild healthy tissues following treatments.
- Helps repair body tissue and maintain a healthy immune system.
- Cancer patients usually need additional protein, especially following surgery, chemotherapy, and radiation therapy.
- Good sources of protein include lean meat, fish, poultry, dairy products (cheese, Greek yogurt, milk, cottage cheese), eggs, nuts, beans & lentils, soyfoods (tofu, soymilk, tempeh, edamame), commercial nutrition beverages (like Ensure® , Boost®, or Orgain™, Enu™) and protein powders.
Carbohydrates and fat
- Helps supply the body with the bulk of calories that it needs to maintain weight.
- Good sources of carbohydrate include: all fruits, starchy vegetables (corn, potatoes, sweet potatoes), grains (rice, quinoa, oatmeal, etc), pastas, cereals, beans, peas, certain dairy products (including yogurt, kefir, and milk), honey, maple syrup, and jelly/jam.
- Good sources of fat include: olive oil and other oils, nuts, seeds, avocado, butter, mayonnaise, gravy, full fat dairy products (whole milk, sour cream, cream cheese, full fat yogurt, ice cream, cheese), foods made with oil or butter (like pastries, chips, tuna canned in oil, etc).
Vitamins and minerals
- Helps to ensure proper growth and development of our body’s cells.
- Allows the body to use the energy in foods.
- Eating a well-balanced diet with enough protein and calories usually contains plenty of vitamins and minerals. Eat a variety and choose foods from the many colors of the rainbow! Try these: tomatoes, watermelon, cherries, melon, carrots, sweet potatoes, oranges, apples, pears, broccoli, Brussels sprouts, edamame, garlic, onions, plums, blueberries, grapes, green tea, oatmeal, quinoa, barley, walnuts, almonds, etc.
Practice good oral hygiene as recommended by the radiation team.
Courtesy of Stanford