Category Archives: nutrition

Recipes for High-Calorie Shakes and Drinks


foodiefriday-wp-logoHi Folks, it is Foodie Friday again, and following on yesterday’s post regarding ensuring that your Child with Cancer gets sufficient calories and proteins in their diet to help them fight their cancer and continue to develop and grow naturally at the same time, here are some great drinks recipes.

For parents of Children with Cancer, the challenges of enticing children to eat nutritious, healthy foods are even greater than those faced by parents of healthy children, and require untold levels of patience and creativity to overcome.

Cancer and cancer treatments can also affect the way your child’s body tolerates certain foods and its ability to process, store and appropriately use nutrients at a time when your child’s body needs the energy and nutrients from a healthy diet more than ever.

Some Children with Cancer also find it difficult to eat or swallow as a result of the cancer treatments, son one of the best methods of getting them in ingest nutrition is via smoothies and other healthy drinks.

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High Calorie/High Protein Diet for Children with Cancer


calorie-protein-pyramidNutrition is an important part of the health of all children, but it is especially important for Children with Cancer, who often have poor appetites as a result of the cancer itself, or due to the side-effects of the cancer treatments.

Both cancer and its treatments may affect a child’s appetite, tolerance to foods, and their body’s ability to use nutrients. Eating the right kinds of foods before, during, and after treatment can help a child feel better and stay stronger.

For parents of Children with Cancer, the challenges of enticing children to eat nutritious, healthy foods are even greater than those faced by parents of healthy children, and require untold levels of patience and creativity to overcome.

Cancer and cancer treatments can also affect the way your child’s body tolerates certain foods and its ability to process, store and appropriately use nutrients at a time when your child’s body needs the energy and nutrients from a healthy diet more than ever.

The nutrient needs of Children with Cancer vary from child to child. Your child’s doctor, nurses, and a registered dietitian can help identify nutrition goals and plan ways to help your child meet them.

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When Your Child with Cancer is Taking Steroids


child-cancer-and-steroidsSteroids occur naturally within our bodies, but can also be made in the laboratory for medical purposes. They help reduce inflammation and control different functions in our bodies such as the immune system or the way the body uses food. One of their key functions is to reduce inflammation/swelling and ease associated symptoms, such as headaches.

When your child has a tumour in their brain it is not only the tumour itself that causes some of the symptoms they may have, but also the swelling surrounding the tumour. This swelling puts pressure on surrounding tissues making the effects of the tumour wider reaching. This pressure can cause symptoms such as headaches, sickness and seizures (fits).

To help reduce the swelling, Children with Cancer may be prescribed steroids such as Prednisone or Dexamethasone as part of their treatment. As steroids are fast-acting drugs this could mean that some of the effects caused by the tumour reduce quite quickly. This does not mean, however, that the size of tumour itself has been reduced.

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Summer Watermelon Gazpacho Recipe for Children with Cancer


watermelon-gazpacho

Continuing with the current trend of posting delicious recipes for children with cancer on a Friday, here is another great recipe from the table of Culinary wizard and author of Happily Hungry: Smart Recipes for Kids with Cancer, Danielle Cook Navidi .

After using nutritious, home-cooked food to help nurse her son back to health when he was suffering from cancer, Danielle Cook Navidi is giving back by teaching other parents the cooking skills and recipes to give their cancer-stricken kids strength.

Danielle shares her culinary wisdom and first-hand knowledge by creating delicious recipes dedicated to children undergoing cancer treatment and recovery. These nutrient-dense recipes combine great taste with powerful immune-building ingredients designed to satisfy young palates, while helping set the stage to more effectively battle cancer.

Regardless where your kids are on their cancer journey you will find something useful and uplifting within the pages of Danielle’s recipe book. This book is a big culinary hug to young cancer patients and their families.

Here is another great free recipe from Danielle that is sure to tickle your child with cancer’s tastebuds.

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Yummiest Turkey Burger Recipe for Children with Cancer


Yummiest Turkey BurgerFollowing up on our Nutrition in Paediatric Cancer post yesterday, here is a bit more about holistic nutritionist, Danielle Cook Navidi’s program and another yummy recipe from her.

Navidi’s 11-year-old son, Fabien Navidi-Kasmai, was diagnosed with Stage III Hodgkin’s lymphoma, and the only nutrition advice she received was, “Let him eat McDonald’s. He needs the calories.”

She was appalled, and as a mother and an avid cook with a love of farmers markets and a background in catering, she decided to do something about it. She was convinced fast food was not the answer, so “went back to basics” and…

Navidi began volunteering at MedStar Georgetown in 2008. “I pretty much just asked, ‘Can I take a little spot and make smoothies?’ She would do prep at home, pre-cooking anything that required a stove or oven, and showed up at the hospital with bags of groceries.

Aziza Shad, chief of MedStar Georgetown’s pediatric hematology-oncology program helped find grant money to fund Danielle Cook Navidi’s program and encouraged Navidi to compile her recipes into a book.

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The Role of Nutrition in Paediatric Cancer Treatment with Danielle Cook, MS


danielle-cook-navidiDanielle Cook Navidi learned that her 11-year-old son, Fabien Navidi-Kasmai had cancer, and the only nutrition advice she received was, “Let him eat McDonald’s. He needs the calories.”

Navidi, an avid cook with a love of farmers markets and a background in catering, was appalled.

Fabien’s body, his digestive system, his taste buds and even his cravings were being ravaged by his illness, Stage III Hodgkin’s lymphoma. He would go for days without eating. When he did, he had trouble keeping down even his favorite foods.

Navidi didn’t know how to feed him anymore, but she was convinced fast food was not the answer.

So I started with the basics,” says Navidi, a Washington, D.C., resident. “I grabbed a pot, put a chicken in, added some vegetables. There were days when he’d have chicken soup at 10 a.m. because it worked for him. Now that’s what I tell other parents: Start with the chicken.”

That back-to-basics approach is the backbone of her cookbook, “Happily Hungry: Smart Recipes for Kids with Cancer.”

In this presentation, Danielle Cook, MS, will draw from her experience as the Director of an innovative nutrition program for pediatric oncology patients as well as her first-hand experience with her son’s cancer to discuss pediatric cancer in the United States and the need for sound nutritional support during and after treatment. She will also address the unique needs of adolescent and young adult survivors, and how the nutrition program she created bridges patient needs with cancer protocols.

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Methods Your Child with Cancer Can Take in Nutrients


antioxidant foodsAs discussed in previous posts, it is vital that a Child with Cancer gets sufficient nutrients before, during, and after treatment in order to feel better and stay stronger, as well as to cope with treatment side effects.

Treatments for cancer such as Chemotherapy and Radiation Therapy take their toll on little bodies and these treatments as well as the cancer itself strip the child of vitality and severely impair their immune systems.

Children with Cancer need protein, carbohydrates, fat, water, vitamins, and minerals. Unfortunately it is not always possible for them to get these purely from food, due to various side-effects of the cancer treatment.

There are many ways to help your child get the nutrients he or she needs.

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Great Recipes for Children with Cancer


Quick-Diets-3-Weight-Loss-Super-Foods-289x300Eating a balanced, nutritional diet is very important for good health, especially for Children with Cancer, as they need the correct kind of nutrition to make help their compromised immune systems fight the cancer and other infections.

Children with cancer need protein, carbohydrates, fat, water, vitamins, and minerals.

This is not always easy, however, as individuals with cancer often lose their taste for various foods due to the cancer treatments, and some treatments make one feel nauseous or make everything taste metallic.

It is also often difficult for parents who are struggling financially to try to find something that their child can actually stomach eating – sometimes they can only keep down something like cheesenax, and the parent, just grateful that they are at least eating something, will ply them with this snack – it is not nutritional however, so one needs to try other things.

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The Importance of Nutrition for Children with Cancer


cancer fighting foodsNutrition is an important part of the health of all children, but it is especially important for Children with Cancer. It is therefore of vital importance that you learn about your child’s nutritional needs and how cancer and its treatment may affect them.

Eating the right kinds of foods before, during, and after treatment can help a child feel better and stay stronger. It is also important so that the Child with Cancer can cope with treatment side effects that might affect how well they can eat.

Children with Cancer need protein, carbohydrates, fat, water, vitamins, and minerals. A dietitian can help you understand your child’s specific needs and develop an eating plan.

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Childhood Cancer Survivors with Poor Diet at Risk of Chronic Illness


plate-of-foodA new study suggests that survivors of childhood cancer tend to have a poor diet in their adult life; a diet lacking essential nutrients might increase the risk of chronic disease for survivors of childhood cancer, as they are already more prone to developing serious illnesses.

The study was carried out by researchers from the Friedman School of Nutrition Science and Policy at Tufts University in Massachusetts, in collaboration with St. Jude Children’s Research Hospital in Tennessee.

The team examined whether there was a connection between childhood cancer treatment and the survivors’ nutritional intake.

Using a self-administered Block Food Frequency questionnaire, the study looked at the diets of 2,570 adult survivors of childhood cancer to see if they met the requirements of the 2010 Dietary Guidelines for Americans. The results were recently published in The Journal of Nutrition.

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Basic Food Price Increases in South Africa Impacting Health of Children with Cancer


shopping trolleyThe price of basic foods eaten by low-income households in South Africa has increased by 15% in the past year, and many households can no longer get through the month on the household earnings, according to the Pietermaritzburg Agency for Community Social Action (PACSA).

PACSA, upon releasing its annual Food Price Barometer on the 13th October, which tracks the prices of 36 basic foods, warned of “greater levels of social instability” as people faced hunger and desperation.

The reason for this post is to give you all just an idea of what we are faced with when our Childhood Cancer Families come to us for help, and why we are struggling so much more this year to be able to help them (apart from all other projects and various other kinds of help, LFCT currently provides in excess of 130 Families with groceries every month).

With one of the parents having had to give up their job to care for their Child with Cancer these families are REALLY struggling to make ends meet for the whole family due to less income and all the added financial costs that come with having a Child with Cancer in the household (added travel costs, added medical costs, special dietary requirements, special personal hygiene requirements, etc. etc.)

Households with no savings to draw on cannot absorb shocks by spending more money,” said PACSA’s Mervyn Abrahams and Julie Smith.

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Nutrition Vital for People with Cancer


cancer fighting foodsGood nutrition plays a vital role during cancer treatment and must therefore play an important part in any overall treatment plan. The food we eat has daily impact on our health; increasing our energy levels and supporting our immune system among other benefits.

Eating a healthy, minimally processed, plant-based diet not only benefits your overall health, but can also help you manage symptoms during treatment and promote survivorship.

While many individuals with cancer find it difficult to source nutritious, tasty food while experiencing chemo-related side effects, there are oodles of ways to keep your body healthy and your immune system supported by eating the right foods during treatment.

It is common to experience a loss of appetite, taste changes, or other symptoms that make it difficult or less desirable to eat while undergoing treatment for cancer. Most individuals lose weight either as a result of their particular cancer or as a result of the harsh cancer treatments and are worried about how to regain the weight.

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