Monday, December 7, 2015


Cancer is the term that is used to describe a wide variety of malignant diseases. It is the second commonest cause of death in the world.


• The exact causesfor cancer is not known.
• It is multi-factorial disease – many factors contribute or predispose this condition.
• Modern diet – increased intake of junk food and decreased intake of fibers and roughage.
• Age, environmental pollutants or social, emotional factors influence the disease.
• Family tendency.
• Exposure to radiations.
• Occupational exposure to pollutants – lung cancer.
• Increased consumption of cigarettes - lung cancer.
• Tobacco chewing – oral cancer.
• Chronic alcoholics – liver cancer.
• Use of contraception, excess sexual freedom, virginity, women with no children – cervical and uterine cancer
• Late marriages, women who have not breast fed there children – breast cancer.
• Non vegetarian diet especially high consumption of meat and red meat.
• Obesity hypertension and diabetes have been seen to be associated symptoms.


• Most of the time there is no presentation no pain, cancer usually is detected accidentally and by the time it is detected it has spread in the whole body.
• Painless swelling in breast or at the site of cancer.
• Intracranial space occupying lesions can present with fits, severe headaches, vomiting, papilloedema.
• Abdominal lesions can cause constipation.
• Bronchial lesions present with cough & shortness of breath.
• Hemorrhage from various orifices.
• Pain either due to nerve compression or due to distension of an organ.
• There can be deep bone pains or referred pains.
• In terminal cases depression, loneliness & irritability.
• Tumor may cause obstruction affecting ingestion, digestion absorption, malabsorption through secondary intestinal changes.
• Pain, fatigue, depression, Anxiety, Nausea vomiting and diarrhea.
• Taste changes- mouth blindness develops – bitter and sweet thresholds are altered. Patient will avoid chocolate, coffee, tea, red wine, citrus fruits red meat cheese due to altered taste
• Low intake of food can cause severe weakness
• Anorexia.
• Anemia.
• Loss of weight.
• Cachexia.
• Food aversion
• Early satiety
• Loss of body cell mass
• Emaciation- loss of subcutaneous fat and body protein leading to weight loss and muscle weakness.
• Metabolic disorders – altered metabolism of fats, proteins, carbohydrates, glucose, vitamins, minerals and electrolytes.
• Hyperglycemia
• Immunodepression- changes in the function of the immune system.
• Hyponatraemia and Hypercalcaemia
• Acid-base imbalance
• All these symptoms can be exacerbated by cancer treatment like chemotherapy or radiation.


• Give high energy and high protein diet.
• Wide variety of food should be selected to ensure all vitamins and minerals are included in the diet.
– Increase intake of antioxidants like vitamin A, vitamin C, vitamin E, selenium.
• Include Japanese sea vegetables (arame, hijiki, kombu, nori) in diet if available, they are remarkably nutritious.
• Wheat grass juice is recommended – grow wheat grains in a pot – grass comes up in a weeks time so its advisable to plant seven pots so as to have every days supply. Extract juice from these grass and consume twice a day. It helps you to develop immunity and remove toxins from the body.
• Consume ½ cup of bitter gourd every morning. Advisable to add little ginger and turmeric to it. You can also add honey or jaggery to it, to alter its bitter taste if required.
• Daily eat 3-4 mint and basil leaves.
• Have high energy food / drink like sugarcane juice, fats.
• Consumption of sesame seed / oil is advised as it is a very good tonic and has anti-cancer properties.
• During the cancer affections and treatment, there is high demand for energy hence fats are required in high amount. Hence it is recommended to fry food rather than grilling them.
• Vegetarians should increase their consumption of pulses and legumes (peas and beans).
• Consumption of fresh fruits and raw vegetables is advised.
• Milk and milk products should be avoided to those patients with intestinal damage who are also lactose intolerant or those who cannot tolerate, digest or absorb a normal diet in such case liquid supplement formula can be used.
• Multivitamin supplements may be required in case of digestive and metabolic disorders. Should be taken as indicated by your physician.
• Tube feeding can be used in patients who cannot or are unwilling to take food orally.
• Parentral feeding – is considered when there is gastro-intestinal tumors or gastro-intestinal tract is not functioning
Dr Neeraj Gupta 9811022908

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