By Angela Medieros, Staff Writer
FOODS AND HEALING PORTIONS
If portion size is an issue, “size down” the serving
plate to a less intimidating one. It may be
easier on your loved one to be given a teacup with
soup instead of a bowl, and a quarter or half
sandwich on the teacup’s saucer, instead of the
traditional serving of bowl and plate. Remind
your loved one that “seconds are always available,”
or incorporate psychology that benefits you both.
“I made extra in case we get hungry later” is one
way of leaving the option open for a later meal,
with no guilt on anyone’s part for making and
putting away the additional food.
Soup can provide both nutrients and hydration,
and is a good choice if your loved one is having
trouble with small meals. There are many
selections in boxed and canned varieties.
Allow your loved one to have a variety in case they
lose interest in one type.
Bathroom cups are about three ounces and can be
filled with soups that taste good cold. Served
in this fashion, they can be prepped in advance,
allowing your loved one to serve themselves,
retaining independence. Covered serving ware
can fill the need also, but be sure your loved one
can open them by themselves. If conserving
strength is the priority, opt for the bathroom cups
covered in plastic wrap.
If your loved one is spending time in bed after
cancer therapy, consider investing in a portable
fridge to keep drinks and snacks in, to allow them
easy access and give you a break from preparation
KEEP IT SIMPLE, KEEP YOUR SANITY
Cancer diagnosis is devastating to everyone
involved. The healthcare system has its
imperfections, but with proper navigation, help can
be found. Nutritional consultants, adjunct
therapy like prescribed supplements and counseling
are only a few options that caregivers can access to
make sure their loved one is receiving what they
Make changes as needed, and allow yourself to
adapt to your loved one’s nutritional needs and food
requests. You don’t need to empty the pantry
and start over. Add a few selections, keeping
what works and letting the rest go. Your
natural creativity as a caregiver will give you
strength and ideas to help your loved one as you
both proceed through cancer treatment.