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Today we thought we would continue the “Colourful Foods” or “Eat the Rainbow” vibe that we started yesterday, seeing that it is Friday… nearly weekend… and we want to have a little fun… and we like unicorns 🦄
Smoothies are great “go-to” nutritional drinks for Children with Cancer who are having difficulty eating due to their cancer or as a side-effect of their cancer treatments.
Smoothies can generally be more easily tolerated and are one way to ensure that your Child with Cancer is getting the vitamins, nutrients, phytochemicals etc. that they need to boost their immune system and help them fight their cancer.
Smoothies are also a great way to get children to “drink their veggies” and the best part of it all is that they will not even realise that those great drinks actually contain veggies because they go down so smoothly 😉
Malnutrition at the diagnosis of cancer is not an uncommon finding in the developing world.
Malnutrition describes the consequences of insufficient protein-energy intake. Malnutrition is an unspecific term used to define an inadequate nutritional condition. It is characterized by either a deficiency or an excess of energy with measurable adverse effects on clinical outcome.
Malnutrition describes the consequences of insufficient protein-energy intake. An adequate protein-energy balance is a prerequisite for age-appropriate growth and maintenance.
Nutrition is very important for Children with Cancer, because the presence of the tumour as well as the treatments that they undergo play havoc with their immune systems as well as various other systems in their little bodies.
It is vital that Children with Cancer, including Children with Brain Cancer, eat well-balanced, nutritional meals and snacks in order to maintain their weight, rebuild any tissue lost in treatment, and strengthen their immune system and power it to fight against the brain cancer.
The occurrence of malnutrition in children with childhood tumours is multifactorial and develops during therapy for cancer in 40-80% of children. Malnutrition is more commonly seen in patients with advanced neuroblastoma, Wilms tumour, Ewing sarcoma and advanced lymphomas.
Malnutrition is usually more severe with aggressive tumours in the later stages of malignancy. Children who have a poor nutritional status have lower survival rates compared to those with a good nutritional status.
The majority of childhood cancers are treated by combined modality therapy, including surgery, radiotherapy, and antineoplastic schedules commonly providing a
variety of side effects, which may lead a child into a state of nutritional deprivation.
Each of these treatment modalities may produce injuries to major organ systems (liver and pancreas), and a combination of therapies could result in a synergism of adverse effects.
Multimodality therapies combined with the effects of the tumour itself affect nutritional status and damage rapidly growing cells, e.g., in the gastrointestinal tract, causing serious and undesirable symptoms. Read the rest of this entry
Ensuring that your Child with Cancer gets sufficient nutrition, which is necessary to improve their immune system so that they can fight the cancer, is not always easy, especially when you are a single parent, are dealing with the side-effects of chemotherapy or radiation treatment, or have other children to look after as well.
The following quick meal and snack suggestions can really be of big help if your Child with Cancer is missing meals while having treatment or waiting for appointments.
Some of these meals/snacks may not seem like the most healthy of choices, but if your Child with Cancer has a poor appetite, it is important to focus on high-protein and high-energy foods and fluids.
One of the biggest worries of a parent of a Child with Cancer (apart from the cancer itself of course) is that it is so difficult to get a child to eat when he or she is undergoing chemotherapy or radiation treatment as their appetite is non-existent and they may also have sores in their mouth, nausea or difficulty swallowing.
The following recipes are great for this problem, as they are all snacks that kids will love, they are highly nutritious so even eating a small amount is good, and they will help strengthen your child’s immune system so that he or she can fight off the cancer and any infections.
Remember also that although these recipes are aimed at Children with Cancer, the other kids and the adults (or the kid in them) will love them too, so make sure that you make enough for everyone!
Our diets can both feed or starve cancer cells productivity by affecting multiple mechanisms which promote cancer. Cancer cells rely on the ability to multiply, repair, differentiate and evade apoptosis (programmed cell death). The recent discovery of cancer stem cells has scientists looking at a whole new approach to preventing and treating cancer.
Cancer stem cells have a pro-survival strategy involved in promoting cancer cell invasion, growth and metastasis.
These cancer stem cells are unlike typical stem cells because they are designed to promote cancerous activities including: the ability to self-renew; resistant to chemotherapeutic drugs; self-sufficient; not influenced by anti-growth signals or by contact with other stem cells; not regulated by normal cell functions including apoptosis; promote inflammation; regulated by tissue invasion and metastasis; sustained by angiogenesis and flawed cellular energy.
Fortunately, cancer stem cells are affected by phytochemicals or the nutrients in our diets. These nutrients are designed to prevent and treat the pro-survival cancerous properties which equip a cancer stem cell to function.
Following on from the article we posted a few days ago, “Creating a Cancer-Fighting Indoor Herb Garden,” today we are going to give you some ideas on how to incorporate those herbs into your and your Child with Cancer’s diet.
While you probably know how to use most of these herbs, there may be some with which you are not that familiar and unsure of how they should be used.
Learning more about these herbs and how to use them in different foods can be some fun that you and your child(ren) can share…. from planting to how they grow to harvesting to using them….
These herbs are really good for fighting cancer, so it is important that you make them part of your Child with Cancer’s diet – the rest of the family will also benefit from their use, and they can add great taste to your dishes too.
In the following weeks we will also give you some great easy recipes to make using these herbs.
There is something very special about having fresh herbs and spices growing on the windowsill to snip at will, and apart from making food taste great, the medicinal use of herbs and spices have been known for aeons.
Plants tend to lose their cancer-fighting benefits the longer they’re separated from their roots, so it’s ideal to pick herbs fresh and use them immediately in your cuisine.
There is also an emotional aspect to growing herbs yourself – a special purpose and a completed cycle, if you will. There is also a connection to life that is personally fulfilling… the excitement when the seed produces its first leaves and then develops the flowers and finally the fruit.
Growing a windowsill herb garden is also a great hobby that you and your Child with Cancer can enjoy doing together – both you and your child will derive great pleasure from watching them grow and smelling their fresh fragrance.
Herbal remedies have been used to treat both the cancer itself and to ease the side effects caused by conventional therapies. Having a fresh supply on your windowsill is also perfect for making some of those great cancer-fighting, nutritious smoothies.
Cancer treatment can affect both the appetite and digestion of a Child with Cancer, making it difficult to enjoy the foods they usually love.
Added to the fact that they are just feeling miserable and do not have an appetite because of the cancer itself, they also have to deal with cancer treatment side-effects such as Appetite Loss, Diarrhoea, Nausea and Vomiting, Dehydration, Taste Changes, a Sore mouth, Difficulty Swallowing (Dysphagia) and more…
While your child may not always feel like eating, it’s important to do what you can to help them maintain their intake of calories, protein and fluids. Think of good nutrition as an essential part of their recovery and do what you can to make it a priority.
Children with Cancer generally have many problems caused by their cancer and by the cancer treatments they are undergoing, such as Chemotherapy and Radiation Therapy, including losing weight, inability to eat or swallow, and an impaired immune system exactly at the time that they need everything they can get to fight this devastating disease.
Part of the answer to these problems may lay in a nutrient-loaded porridge that was developed by the late Dr Basil Kransdorff, a South African doctor, specifically to cater to feeding HIV patients and babies.
The late Dr Basil Kransdorff and wife Rose’s work helping an NGO called CARE (Community AIDS Response) at the Joburg General Hospital, led to a worldwide debate on Food Security vs Nutrition Security.
Back in 2000 there was no medication and Doctors were telling patients diagnosed with HIV to go home, eat a healthy well-balanced diet and prepare to die. It was a difficult time when little was known about treating those living with HIV.