Font Size: A A A

Thrive Kitchen: Connecting with an oncology dietitian

10 October, 2023

When it comes to nutrition and cancer, experiences can be different. Some people may have challenges eating because of nausea or physical impacts of treatment (such as for head and neck cancers). Others may be looking to improve their diet in preparation for treatment.

Whatever the reasons, a visit to an oncology dietitian can help anyone diagnosed with cancer gain the knowledge, tools, and support to ensure their nutritional needs are met. Oncology dietitians are a valuable part of the cancer care team, creating individualized medical nutrition therapy plans, educating on potential side effects and how they may affect nutrition and digestion, and providing ongoing guidance in partnership with the care team to best support each patient.

Some of the priorities an oncology dietitian will focus on are helping the person with cancer to maintain body weight and preserve muscle mass. They'll also suggest small changes to one's diet that can help reduce the impacts of nausea, diarrhea, and taste and appetite changes.

Another great thing oncology dietitians can do is address some of those persistent food myths. For example, there's no one particular food that will cause a cancer to grow faster or to slow its growth or spread. (If that were the case, we'd just eat that food and cure cancer!) They can also clear up questions about special diets, like keto or alkaline diets or cleanses.

The best way to connect with an oncology dietitian is to ask your cancer care team or social worker for a referral. You can also reach out to a ThriveNV navigator for assistance in finding a dietitian.

Special thanks to Julie Shimko, MA, RD, Outpatient Oncology Registered Dietitian, Stanford Oncology for providing this information via the 2023 Nevada Cancer Control Summit.

You May Also Like

woman smiling
Podcast: Dental Health for Cancer Patients
  • Health & Wellness
  • survivorship
Our friend Dr.
holding hands
Lifestyle changes can help maintain, restore health after a cancer diagnosis
  • Health & Wellness
The American College of Lifestyle Medicine (ACLM) released tips on how individuals can restore their health during and after cancer treatment by u
NCC and ThriveNV staff with Gina Billino of Scriaggio with a journal donation.
Journal donation meant to empower, inspire and heal
  • Health & Wellness
More than a year ago—September 2022 to be more precise—Gina Billino reached out to ThriveNV to see if she could make a donation.

I have nothing but good things to say about this organization. Starting with the staff, they are caring, friendly, and very knowledgeable! I immediately felt like they were looking out for the best interest of my sick mother. My main contact was Valerie and she provided me and my mother with all… Read More

Grecia, M., Caregiver, Las Vegas

ThriveNV has been an amazing program to work with! I live in a rural part of Nevada, which means that sometimes resources are difficult to find. Working with ThriveNV and Amy Thompson made all of the difference. They were able to connect us with resources and eased the burden of trying to piece… Read More

Bre T., Caregiver and Community Partner, Rural

I have been extremely impressed with the professionalism, expertise, and supportive resources that ThriveNV has provided to our community. Additionally, having bi-lingual community partners ensures that our patient population is afforded the communication and support they deserve.

Kim D., Community Partner, Southern Nevada

Jorge, I am so grateful for you and your organization, both do so much for our cancer community. You have shown the utmost respect, knowledge and care towards me and my health. You listen, answer all my concerns and are always ready and willing to assist me. You always take the initiative and… Read More

I.A., Ovarian Cancer, Las Vegas

I am very pleased with the assistance and guidance I received from the patient navigator and ThriveNV. I will definitely refer my family and friends to this service.

R.C.G, Breast Cancer
ThriveNV has become a resource of resources for cancer patients and survivors in the state of Nevada. The patient navigators have been incredibly helpful as we share resources to help patients, caregivers, and medical professionals. The addition of bilingual navigators has been an enormous value-… Read More
Natalie S., Survivor and Community Partner

Nevada Cancer Coalition's [ThriveNV program] is the best resource in Nevada for everything cancer. They are so knowledgeable and willing to assist whenever needed. I always say, ‘I wish every state had this program because the care and knowledge you all have is unmatched!' They are experts at… Read More

Nicole, Community Partner / Patient Navigator

With the help of ThriveNV and the Nevada Cancer Coalition, CHA has been able to stay up to date on patient resources, whether it's cancer prevention or cancer treatment this Coalition knows it all. Throughout the years, we have collaborated on cancer prevention projects and patient navigation. I… Read More

Liz, FQHC Cancer Care Coordinator, Community Clinic Partner, Northern Nevada

Working together with ThriveNV, specifically with Amy Thompson, made all the difference when it came to giving our mutual patient the resources and the help he needed to get back to good health. By having the support and input of ThriveNV, I found the necessary tools to pave a clear and easy… Read More

Ivonne, Case Manager, Community Clinic Partner, Northern Nevada