Photo provided by Krista Peterson
The process of eating is not just to sustain life, but it is also associated with good times with both family and friends. Food brings about important physical and emotional significance, and anyone who is suffering from mesothlioma symptoms, brought on by asbestos exposure, knows that planning meals according to the disease is important.
Many caregivers stress about how they will have to prepare their loved one's meals if they become sick. There is also the added pressure of the possibility that the meal will be rejected because the patient may have a small appetite or is unable to digest certain foods. Following proper nutrition and diet guidelines can help the caregiver prepare the most well-balanced and healthy meals so that their patient, and themselves, can enjoy mealtimes together.
If it is possible, a meal should be shared together. That way the food prepared will not only satisfy the person's physical needs, but also help with emotional ones, as well. Caregivers may plan on eating a heavier meal than their patient, and follow it up with a shared dessert. A breakfast meal could be shared toast, fruit, cereal or a favorite yogurt, with the only difference being the quantity that the patient and caregiver consume.
Always remember that the nutritional needs of the patient can easily change during the course of the illness. The caregiver and the health care team must be willing and able to adapt to these needs quickly and accordingly. The caregiver may find that by planning ahead, they can relieve a lot of the stress that occurs when having to shop for the patient.
The following pointers can be helpful to those doing the shopping:
- Keep the freezer and cupboards stocked up with the patient's favorite foods that are easy to prepare
- Cook meals in advance in bulk and then freeze them in single-serving portions.
- Enlist the help of friends or relatives of the patient to help cook or even shop for foods.
Whether or not the mesothelioma patient is being treated aggressively for the disease, nutritional needs are still very important. As long as the patient continues to eat well, he or she can avoid losing weight, as well as regaining any weight that may have been lost. Furthermore, a diet of nutritional foods will help the patient continue to fight infection, as well as fight the side effects that certain treatments can cause, such as those from surgery, radiation or chemotherapy.
The following is a general guideline as to what different nutrients will be provided through a healthy diet:
- Protein - Eating foods rich in protein will help to ensure growth, repair any body tissue that may have been damaged during surgery or chemotherapy, and help to maintain a healthy immune system.
- Fat and Carbohydrates - These nutrients help to supply the body with necessary caloric intake. The amount needed will be determined by the patient's age, height and weight and physical activity.
- Vitamins and Minerals – These help to provide growth and development, and help the body use the calories from food effectively. Vitamins may or may not be necessary, but can help those who are ill and have problems receiving their needed nutrition through diet.
- Water - Water is important for the body to stay hydrated. Talk to the patient's doctor or dietician to find out how much water should be consumed daily.
Patients suffering with mesothelioma symptoms will always have special diet needs while they are being treated, and it is important for their health care team to make the right choices for them.
About the Guest Writer:
Krista Peterson is very passionate about Women's health and the long term side effects if things are not handled properly. She is a Health & Safety Advocate and believes in natural healing methods such as: proper diet and exercises such as yoga. Contact Krista by email at: firstname.lastname@example.org.
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Blog Post Source(s)
1st paragraph- "mesothelioma symptoms"
3rd paragraph- "emotional"
6th paragraph last sentence- "diet of nutritional foods"
last paragraph- "mesothelioma symptoms"