Diet Counselling - Cancer and Nutrition

The six-letter word “cancer” carries a lot of weight and stirs up a lot of strong feelings. It brings fear, uncertainty, and heartache in not just the patient but also the people in the patient’s life. It is unbearably painful to see a loved one struggle with this illness, and the fight itself is draining on both physical and an emotional level. It is a disease that steals people’s health, freedom, and, occasionally, even their lives.

The battle with cancer is one that nobody should have to face alone. But despite the difficulty and suffering, there is strength, resiliency, and hope. The intricate nature of cancer treatment requires a holistic approach. Proper nutrition is a critical component of cancer treatment.

One of the leading oncologists in India Dr. Sandeep Nayak, the founder of MACS Clinic, says, “Diet and nutrition counseling is a crucial part of cancer treatment. It aims to give patients the nutrients they need to control their condition and preserve their quality of life.”

In this blog, we will discuss the importance of nutrition in cancer treatment, diet counselling for cancer patients, and other aspects of the battle against cancer.

Importance of Nutrition in Cancer Treatment

A healthy diet is essential for cancer patients since it keeps their stamina and energy levels up during treatment. Fatigue, nausea, and appetite loss are a few of the various detrimental effects of cancer treatment that the patient can manage with a healthy diet. A proper diet helps strengthen the immune system, fight off infections, and improve post-operative wound healing.

Addressing Nutritional Deficiencies in Cancer Patients

Cancer and cancer treatment can result in nutritional deficiencies in the patients. Patients may find it challenging to tolerate cancer therapies if they are malnourished, which can result in muscular atrophy, weakness, and exhaustion. Through individualized diet counselling, a dietician can detect and address nutritional deficiencies. They may suggest nutritional supplements like protein drinks and vitamins to ensure the patient gets enough nutrition.

Overview of a Balanced, Cancer-Fighting Diet

The immune system and inflammation can be regulated by eating foods that are high in vitamins, minerals, and antioxidants. Components of a balanced, cancer-preventive diet include a variety of fruits and vegetables, whole grains, lean protein, and healthy fats. Cancer patients should avoid processed foods, foods heavy in saturated fats, and foods high in sugar.

Pre and Post-Operative Diet

Maintaining a nutritious diet before cancer surgery is crucial to enhance healing and lower the chance of complications. This can involve eating a lot of protein to speed up the healing of wounds. To help the body heal effectively after surgery, the patient might need to adhere to a particular diet, such as fluids or soft food diet.

Specific Dietary Recommendations for Cancer Patients

Cancer patients may require a specific diet, depending on their type of cancer and the treatment they are receiving. For instance, individuals with head and neck cancer may need a liquid diet or soft food after surgery. consuming a well-balanced diet rich in fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and lean proteins to support overall health and strength. It is often advised to limit processed foods, sugary beverages, and excessive alcohol consumption, while staying adequately hydrated.

It is important for cancer patients to listen to their bodies, eat smaller, frequent meals to manage side effects.

Diet after Chemotherapy and Other Therapies

The patient may endure adverse side effects after chemotherapy and other cancer treatments. Side effects may include exhaustion, nausea, and vomiting. It is crucial to maintain adequate nutrition in order to encourage healing and rehabilitation. It is best to eat small, frequent meals that are simple to digest and do not irritate the stomach.

Furthermore, it is critical to maintain hydration by consuming lots of fluids, such as water, broth, or herbal tea. Patients receiving radiation therapy may need to avoid spicy foods since they can irritate their tongues and throat. Cancer care counseling can offer tailored suggestions for every patient based on their unique requirements.

Please note: Diet can change during the cancer treatment process because cancer and its treatments can alter your taste, appetite, and digestion.

At MACS Clinic, our dedicated team of onco-surgeons and dietitians assist cancer patients in creating a custom nutrition plan after considering individual requirements and preferences. They take time to discuss any changes in taste, appetite, or digestion with the patients to provide suitable nutritional advice.

Foods you should avoid to lower your cancer risk

Expertise: Our cancer clinic in Bangalore has a highly trained and experienced team specializing in cancer treatment. Dr. Sandeep Nayak, a world-acclaimed oncologist in India, leads them. This can be particularly important in complex procedures like RIA-MIND, which may require specialized knowledge and expertise.

Innovative, advanced treatments: Our cancer clinic in Bangalore offers the patients newer cancer treatments and innovative therapies that are not yet widely available.

Processed meat

Compounds that cause cancer are present in processed meats like bacon, hot dogs, and meat at counters selling cooked meats or ready-to-eat foods. It would be best to avoid even processed meats marketed as “uncured” or “nitrate-free” foods.

Reduce intake of red meat

Limit your weekly intake of cooked red meat to 500 grams. Instead, use lean protein sources like fish, chicken, or plants. Reducing intake of red meat can have several health benefits. It can lower the risk of heart disease, certain cancers, and promote a more balanced diet by increasing the consumption of plant-based proteins.

Avoid alcohol

Avoiding alcohol can have numerous benefits for your overall well-being. It helps maintain a healthy liver, reduces the risk of alcohol-related diseases, and reduce the risk of certain cancers. Choosing to abstain from alcohol can lead to a more balanced and fulfilling lifestyle. Studies have shown that excessive alcohol consumption is linked to an increased risk of cancers such as mouth, throat, esophageal, liver, colorectal, and breast cancer. It is proven to be a cause of cancer and should be avoided as much as possible. No amount of alcohol is safe.


In conclusion, nutrition advice is an essential part of cancer treatment. A healthy, cancer-fighting diet helps strengthen the immune system, manage cancer treatment side effects, and aid healing and recovery. At MACS Clinic, our healthcare team creates individualized dietary recommendations for each patient, depending on the type of cancer and treatment.

So, it’s important to get diet and nutrition counseling. Our highly-skilled team at the world-class MACS Clinic is passionate about the fight against cancer and believes it is a battle we can combat together.

With our experience and knowledge, we strive to provide the best cancer treatment in Bangalore.

If you need more information on maintaining a healthy cancer-fighting diet, please do not hesitate to contact us. Our dietitians and nutritionists can provide cancer care counseling and guide you with right diet.