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Dietary Guide and Meal Options

               Forward by Matt Carter, OOSO Chair of Trustees and former patient
               By sharing our experiences of coping with oesophageal and stomach cancer, we hope that you find
               this a practical and helpful guide to eating well, maintaining a nutritious diet and managing your
               weight.  We do this by providing dietary tips and real examples of meal options that work for us.
               Whilst we believe our guidance is helpful, it should not be considered clinically definitive advice.
               Specialist dieticians based at the Churchill Hospital, or your local hospital should always be consulted
               if you have specific needs or concerns.

               For your convenience, we have summarised our experiences and suggestions in 3 stages.  Just click
               on any stage and go that section:

                   1.  Diagnosis and treatment phase (or as a PDF)
                   2.  Post-surgery and recovery, the first year (or as a PDF)
                   3.  Long term dietary tips and lifestyle beyond year 1 (or as a PDF)

               We are eternally grateful to Liz Ward (Lead Dietician at the Churchill Hospital) for her overview and
               support of this guide, and to Dr Ed White and former patient Peter Adams for sharing their in-depth
               knowledge of diets through their editorial input.

               Section 2: Post treatment, surgery and recovery – the first year

               For non-operative patients
               Various treatments and options are available other than surgery.  Every individual’s circumstances
               are different, and the Clinical Team will offer their best and tailored advice for each person.
               Depending on how successful a treatment plan has been, usually after cycles of chemotherapy and
               or radiotherapy, patients generally find they can eat reasonably normally, which is a great and well
               earnt relief.

               The summaries of meal options listed below should help you to establish a varied routine of foods to
               If no further treatment can be offered and swallowing becomes more difficult, it is best to speak
               with your Consultant Surgeon and Dietician for their most pragmatic and expert advice.  In more
               advanced cases, options are still available, such as stents and feeding tubes to help continue
               nourishment and energy for an active life.

               For post-operative patients
               Waking up from surgery is a surreal experience, surrounded by monitors, bleeping noises, tubes and
               sensors, people milling around wearing protective suits and face masks.  It can be an emotional
               moment too, a deep sense relief knowing that the surgery itself is over.  In reality with strong pain
               relief and intensive care, the whole experience is a bit of a blur.
               Oesophageal and stomach surgery is so incredibly effective that sipping water is possible within just a
               few hours, and a hot cup of tea or coffee isn’t far away.  Whilst a feeding tube (Jejunostomy - JEJ tube)
               will have been inserted into the small intestine supplying the body with much needed liquid nutrients,
               it won’t be too long before pureed and fork mashable foods are on offer, almost as soon as the patient
               feels comfortable to eat.
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