Diet for Leukemia Patients
Eating healthy foods is important for everyone. Patients diagnosed with Leukemia need a healthy balanced diet to boost their immune system and fight off infection. Their diet should consist of whole grains, low fat proteins like fish and poultry, and fruits and vegetables. It should be noted that the diet of leukemia patients depend on a lot of factors. Some of these include:
- The severity or the cancer stage, age, and other underlying physical and medical conditions of the patient.
- There is a need of a good amount of protein and calories for those patients that are undergoing chemo and radiation therapy than those who are not.
- The side effects can also make some changes in the diet plan of the patient.
Foods for Leukemia Patients
Foods for patients with leukemia can be those that are eaten by healthy people as long as it gives off a well-balanced nutrition. It is also good for patients to practice eating even when they are not hungry to ensure that nutrients are taken in. Furthermore, there is no specific diet for a patient with leukemia since it usually depends on the kind of treatment being done and if the food can be tolerated.
- Foods that are rich in antioxidants. This is especially true for those undergoing chemotherapy since this process can lead to antioxidant deficiency in the body. Good examples of these are fruits like grapes, blackberries, apricots, strawberries, oranges, red grapes, cherries and plums. Eggplant, kale, Brussels sprouts, beets, broccoli flowers, onions, spinach, red bell peppers, corn and alfalfa sprouts are vegetables that have good amounts of antioxidants. Some of these can be made into juices. A good example is carrot juice.
- Foods that are rich in protein. Meat, fish and poultry are good sources, but since patients that are under a lot of medication often cannot tolerate such food, more easy-to-digest foods are recommended. These include beans, soy, nuts, dairy products, almond butter and eggs. Lentils can also be served.
- Foods that are rich in good fat. It is dangerous for leukemia patients to lose weight so it is recommended to store good fat. There are times wherein medical practitioners recommend loading on fat-laden food like pizza and ice cream to meet fat and calorie needs.
- Whole wheat toast
- Garlic and ginger. Ginger is one of the best foods that can help combat nausea which most patients experience throughout treatment. Garlic on the other hand contains allicin which is allyl sulfide. Allicin has been researched to strengthen the immune system, minimize the rate cancer cell division and eventually destroy it.