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Mission Moment: Help Battling Post-Treatment Fatigue

By PearlPoint Nutrition Services March 25, 2013Pearls of Wisdom Blog

Our mission at PearlPoint Cancer Support is to create a more confident cancer journey for adults anytime, anywhere. But what does that mission look like in action?

A cancer fight can often include chemotherapy and/or radiation. The aftermath of these treatments can result in a “new normal” for survivors post-treatment. For Carrie, who underwent surgery and chemotherapy for colorectal cancer, a more confident cancer journey meant receiving help understanding her ongoing fatigue and help maintaining her weight post-treatment.

After treatment, Carrie was 30 pounds lighter than at the time of diagnosis. Although she felt the weight loss was beneficial overall, she continued to feel weak and tired. That is when Carrie called PearlPoint Cancer Support for guidance.

Carrie was able to consult with one of PearlPoint’s registered dietitians, who helped her understand why she might be feeling fatigued. Our dietitian let Carrie know that following cancer treatment, survivors can often be undernourished even if they are overweight. Our dietitian provided Carrie with balanced nutrition guidelines and information on survivorship nutrition following colorectal cancer.

At her doctor’s suggestion, because of compelling evidence linking red meat consumption with colorectal cancer risk, Carrie wanted to change to a more plant-based diet. Our dietitian helped Carrie find recipes and meal ideas to best help Carrie meet her goal of incorporating a well-balanced diet with a focus on lean protein sources.

After following our dietitian’s recommendations to eat more frequent meals throughout the day rather than one or two large meals, Carrie noticed that her energy level improved and her fatigue lessened. In addition, she was able to reach and maintain a normal weight, which is known to lower her risk for colorectal cancer recurrence.

Without support, cancer can be a devastating experience. The cancer journey is often filled with unexpected and frustrating side effects both before and after treatment. With our support, survivors like Carrie have a trusted partner and access to personalized resources, like recipes and nutrition tips.

*Names and certain details featured in Mission Moments have been altered to protect the identity of our clients.

PearlPoint Cancer Support Staff

Author PearlPoint Cancer Support Staff

PearlPoint Nutrition Services is a program of The Leukemia & Lymphoma Society (LLS).

More posts by PearlPoint Cancer Support Staff

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