Stephen J. Schueler, M.D.

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Cancer of the Mouth Diet

Nutrition and Mouth Cancer
Adequate nutrition is essential for the body to fight cancer. Unfortunately, cancer and its treatment can cause anorexia, weight loss and malnutrition.

There are two main goals for a cancer diet:

  • Achieve and maintain a reasonable weight.
  • Prevent and correct poor nutrition.

Strategies for evaluating weight loss and anorexia include:
  • Determine symptoms that might cause loss of appetite.
  • Learn what foods stimulate the appetite.
  • Provide nutritional and dietary counseling.

Practical dietary guidelines:
  • Atmosphere does make a difference: an attractively set table can help take your mind off a poor appetite.
  • Aromas may also help stimulate the appetite, such as freshly baked bread and cookies.
  • A glass of wine or beer prior to meals may stimulate the appetite.
  • Avoid foods that do not interest you.
  • Discuss your eating problems with your doctor.
  • Give food a chance: food that sounds unappealing today, may sound good tomorrow.
  • Stay away from raw eggs and raw meats.
  • Take advantage of a good appetite.
  • Eat when you feel hungry: do not wait for mealtime.

Benefits of proper nutrition during chemotherapy:
  • Improves your tolerance to therapy: a well-nourished body is stronger and more resilient than a poorly nourished one
  • Increases the effectiveness of therapy
  • Regulates your weight
  • Speeds recovery from treatment

Continue to Cancer of the Mouth Pain Control

Last Updated: Mar 26, 2009 References
Authors: Stephen J. Schueler, MD; John H. Beckett, MD; D. Scott Gettings, MD
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PubMed Cancer of the Mouth References
  1. Casiglia J, Woo SB. A comprehensive review of oral cancer. Gen Dent. 2001 Jan-Feb;49(1):72-82. [12004680]
  2. Kujan O, Glenny AM, Duxbury J, Thakker N, Sloan P. Evaluation of screening strategies for improving oral cancer mortality: a Cochrane systematic review. J Dent Educ. 2005 Feb;69(2):255-65. [15689610]
  3. Moore SR, Johnson NW, Pierce AM, Wilson DF. The epidemiology of mouth cancer: a review of global incidence. Oral Dis. 2000 Mar;6(2):65-74. [10702782]
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