Ideas for Helping a Loved One Through Cancer Treatment
Caregivers often ask me, “What can I do/get to help [insert patient name] feel better during treatment?”
Every patient is going to be different. However, with several years of experience and observation, there are a few things I consistently recommend.
Make a plant-based, non-spicy meal that is easily freezable and yummy when reheated!
How about our Gingered Butternut Squash Soup?
Offer to help around the house, watch the kids for an afternoon, run errands, or cut the grass.
Organize a Meal Train and help coordinate plant-based meals to arrive during the week of chemotherapy treatment.
Ask the patient how you can help!
Recently, I learned Jenny and her three kiddos put together a lemonade stand with 100% of proceeds used to create chemo care kits for patients at the local cancer center. “Lemonade for Laurie” was inspired by their aunt currently battling ovarian cancer.
When we heard their lemonade stand raised $1,000 (you read that right!) we incredibly moved, and knew we wanted to contribute in some way (keep reading until the end!). What a fantastic project to directly benefit cancer patients and help them feel comforted during treatment! The care kits include a variety of essential items as a patient embarks on the start of treatment.
So, add to the list above. . . Create a chemo care kit!
Here are my favorite four nutrition-related products to include in the care kit:
Queasy Drops (or, also marketed at Preggie Drops) are one of my favorite recommendations for nausea and upset stomach during treatment. These hard candies are made with a proprietary blend of essential oils that work--and taste great!
Ginger is well-known as a natural remedy for nausea and GI distress. Ginger Rescue, from The Ginger People, is my go-to nausea relief. Even if you don’t like the taste of ginger, these candies provide the strength of ginger without the intense flavor of other ginger products. Take it from me, who doesn’t care for ginger!
Staying hydrated can be difficult during cancer treatment. Extra fluids are needed to flush the chemotherapy through the system, while electrolytes are sometimes tricky to keep at adequate levels. Although water is always an incredible drink for hydration, more is often needed. Studies show that Oral Rehydration Solutions (ORS) are more effective in treating and preventing dehydration than IV fluids. Drip Drop is a tasty powder you can add to water and easy to carry.
True Lemon is something you can find at my desk, in my kitchen, and my purse. What do I love about it? When you’re sick of drinking plain water, but still want to avoid sugar-sweetened beverages, True Lemon is a great way to increase fluid consumption. One small packet contains crystallized lemon and is free from sweeteners and artificial sweeteners. Be mindful that citrus flavors, such as lemon and lime, should be avoided if someone is having difficulty with mouth sores related to treatment.
Adding these items to care kits is a perfect way to show your loved one you are thinking of them. Plus, you'll provide them with products that may help them feel better during their journey.
You can also help Jenny and her three kids create even more chemo kits in honor of their aunt battling ovarian cancer -- donate to to 'Lemonade for Laurie' here.
Wholesome LLC will match any donations* generously gifted to “Lemonade for Laurie” between now and 11:55 p.m.Thursday, August 15th, 2019.
*Matching up to $250.