Your diet is an important part of your treatment for cancer. Eating the right foods before, during and after your treatment can help you feel better and stay strong. A certified specialist in oncology nutrition is your best source of information about your diet.
When you are healthy, eating enough food to get the nutrients you need is usually not a problem. During cancer treatment, however, this can become a challenge, especially if you have side effects or simply don’t feel well. Recommendations about eating during cancer treatment can be very different from the usual suggestions for healthful eating because of the body’s inability to tolerate certain foods and nutrients. Nutrition recommendations are designed to help build your strength, utilize nutrients and help you withstand the effects of your cancer and its treatment.
Eating well while undergoing cancer treatment may help you to:
- Keep up your strength and energy
- Maintain your weight and your body’s store of nutrients
- Tolerate treatment-related side effects
- Decrease your risk of infection
- Heal and recover quickly
Physical Therapy and Lymphedema Prevention
Lymphedema is a potential side effect of cancer surgery or radiation where lymph fluid does not drain properly and can build up in the fatty tissues under your skin and cause swelling. At Centegra, lymphedema specialists offer physical therapy and customized treatment for the prevention and treatment of lymphedema. For more information, talk to your oncology nurse navigator.
Everyone experiences cancer differently, and some people may find the increased stress and anxiety difficult to handle. In addition to the many cancer support groups available at Centegra, an oncology licensed counselor offers counseling to cancer patients and their loved ones and caregivers to address the emotional stress of living with cancer. For information, call 815-759-4459.
As a licensed professional counselor with more than 10 years of experience, the Centegra oncology chaplain provides assistance to patients and their support systems throughout the cancer experience. The oncology chaplain uses spiritual, therapeutic and expressive arts to promote holistic wellness in cancer management. Support is available for:
- Individual and family counseling
- Survivorship counseling
- Advance directives planning
- Grief counseling
Look Good . . . Feel Better
Provided by the American Cancer Society, this free program at the Centegra Sage Cancer Center in McHenry is for women in active cancer treatment. Volunteer cosmetologists teach women techniques to help them combat the appearance-related side effects of cancer treatment, such as skin changes and hair loss, using cosmetic and skin care products. By appointment only. To register, call 815-344-8000.
Provided by the American Cancer Society, this appointment-based session is free for cancer survivors. In a private setting, participants are fitted with a wig and work with licensed hairstylists and trained volunteers to choose their color and style. Hats, scarves and other alternatives also are available at no charge. To schedule an appointment, call 800-227-2345.
Centegra offers various support services for patients and their family members, including: