GG, I will explain in more detail how imperative it is for your intake to be at the very least 2500 calories and 48-64 oz of water per day. Of course everyone is different and responds to everything in their own way but after going thru it myself Im very knowledgeable about this subject. I will be totally honest about how important this is. If your intake continues to remain so low, you are setting yourself up for a heck of a hard time that is completely avoidable!!! The consequences of not pushing yourself to take in enough daily calories and hydration will eventually catch up to you. I see a hospitalization for malnutrition and dehydration in your future if this isnt changed immediately. Even if you do not have an appetite you MUST eat and drink. When you think you've had enough take a few more bites and sips. Start eating more calorie dense food and drinks. Since you recently had surgery, your body needs to heal and gain strength before the next phase of treatment starts. Going into rads in a weakened state will make it very difficult. Plus, I havent even touched on what else is happening by having such a limited intake.
Ive been down this road myself and have nagged hundreds of members about their intake. I may sound like a broken record to our older members but I do this to help fellow patients to avoid the pitfalls I suffered thru. I really do care about each and every person who has to go thru OC, treatments and recovery. Its a horrible ugly disease that can be horrendous to get thru. One of the most memorable (and worst) days Ive had in my 10+ years of dealing with OC, treatments, recovery and long term after effects was when my doc simply glanced at me then admitted me into the hospital. She didnt touch me or even check my blood pressure, she saw I couldnt walk unassisted and my son was pushing me in a wheelchair. I was so sick at home he practically carried me to the car. He drove the 45 minutes to the hospital to arrive there at 8am when they opened. We never even called for an appointment, we just showed up and my son asked the receptionist for an emergency appointment. The receptionist was startled by my appearance; I could barely hold my head up or talk. She took me right in the back into a room where the doctor came right in. I felt so bad, I actually thought I was in the first stages of dying. That was one of my first hospitalizations for malnutrition and dehydration. I had more suffering and hospitalizations still to come. I suffered more than many due to not having a caregiver. As a single mother I only had my 2 teenaged children to help me.
With not having a balanced diet and not taking in enough calories, you will eventually develop other problems like muscle cramps, headaches, weakness, loss of stamina, irritability, diarrhea or constipation, stomach aches, confusion, dizziness, etc. You may also develop far bigger and more serious issues like cachexia (muscle wasting), anemia, celiac disease, rickets, diabetes, kidney problems, etc. See the articles below about the seriousness of not eating a balanced diet. Plus your body needs at least 2500 calories with focusing on high protein to heal, which is why many cancer patients lose weight so quickly even when taking in 2500 calories a day. Pay very close attention to your weight! Many of us are a little overweight, and think "oh its ok to drop a few pounds." This is NOT the time to lose weight. Losing weight tells me you are not taking in enough calories. If losing weight on 2500 calories you will need to increase it to 3000 or 3500 calories every single day. Going thru cancer changes your metabolism to where it burns up calories at a much faster rate, plus right now your body is trying to rebuild itself after the surgery. Dont be surprised if you boost your intake up and do not gain weight. Even taking in 4 or 5,000 calories right now probably wouldnt cause you to gain an ounce. Cancer patients MUST focus on eating as balanced a diet as much as possible and taking in extra calories. Without taking in enough, the body will pull what it needs from itself which negatively impacts your muscles, teeth, bones, etc. Inadequate nutrition over an extended period of time can cause many serious problems that can last a very long time. With rads coming up in a few weeks try your very best to push yourself to take in more as eating will likely become a bigger challenge during rads. You want to go into rads as strong as possible and that can only be done thru good nutrition. You also want to have all your favorite foods now too so you dont go into rads with any cravings. You will face other obstacles during rads that make eating and drinking more difficult.
Nutrition, calories and hydration are critical to getting thru this cancer battle. It really is a fight!!! We're here to help you get thru this as easy as possible. Every single day those daily minimums most be met. Patients can quickly fall into a "make up" cycle thinking "oh I'll do better tomorrow" but tomorrow never comes where anyone actually is able to make up for the previous days skimping. Its mind over matter right now where you have time before rads to pull yourself out of this cycle and turn it around so you are working on rebuilding your body from the surgery and building yourself up. Try eating more frequently and having smaller meals. Count everything you eat and add it up to see exactly what you are taking in. There are many apps that can help you track what you eat and drink, plus they can track your daily activities as well. Drinking calories is an easy way to boost your calories. Heres a few links to help you better understand about diet and cancer patients.Livestrong Diseases caused by poor nutritionLivestrong, Disease caused by not eating healthy