Up to 80% of all cancer patients will be malnourished.4
Cancer and the effect of treatment can impact the nutritional status of patients which can lead to cancer related malnutrition and poorer outcomes5 if not addressed. Cancer related malnutrition is driven by a combined effect of reduced nutritional intake and metabolic changes. These factors contribute to negative energy and protein balance leading to weight and muscle mass loss.1
Taste and smell alterations may develop throughout the course of the disease, before, during and up to one year after treatment.5
Taste alterations could lead to a reduced intake of food and therefore have a negative impact on the nutritional status with up to 25% reduction in nutritional intake, leading to greater weight loss.2,6
Protein requirements can increase by up to double the standard recommended intake for a cancer patients
ESPEN guidelines on nutrition in cancer patients recommend an increased protein intake in cancer patients.5,8
Poor nutritional status in addition to weight and muscle mass loss can lead to poorer outcomes for the patient. Clinically this impacts not only the patient but also the health care setting in a number of ways.
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