What is Oral Mucositis?
Oral mucositis is a side effect of chemotherapy and radiation, where the patient experiences tissue swelling in their mouth. Some symptoms of oral mucositis are mouth pain, mouth soreness and infection. Bleeding usually only occurs when a patient is taking chemotherapy since it is not a common symptom of radiation.
With chemotherapy, oral mucositis usually heals on its own in around two to four weeks, provided there is no infection. In the case of radiation therapy, oral mucositis lasts for six to eight weeks, depending on the duration of radiation therapy. Apart from self-care that is advised for oral mucositis to reduce bacterial infections in the mouth, certain foods are recommended that will be easier to consume and cater to the patient’s nutritional requirement.
Strawberry coconut milkshake
Strawberries are a low-calorie fruit abundant in vitamins, fibre, and antioxidants known as polyphenols. They are sodium-free, fat-free, and cholesterol-free. On the other hand, coconuts have a high calorie, saturated fat, and fibre content. Manganese, copper, selenium, phosphorus, potassium, and iron are among the minerals that are also found in them. Together they provide a filling and cooling alternative for milk which shouldn’t be consumed by patients undergoing radiation and chemotherapy.
- 1 cup sliced strawberries
- ½ cup coconut milk
- Add ½ cup yoghurt
- ½ banana
- Blend all the ingredients and serve cool.
Lettuce and cauliflower soup
The vitamin A content in lettuce fulfils 82 per cent of the daily requirement of Vitamin A. Vitamin C, iron, and calcium are also present at modest levels. Cauliflower is recognised for its high fibre and B-vitamin content. It is high in antioxidants and phytonutrients, which can help fight cancer. Both the ingredients combined provide a filling and nourishing meal.
- 3 cups roughly chopped lettuce
- 1 cup finely chopped cauliflower
- ¼ cup finely chopped onions
- 2 tsp oil
- Salt and pepper to taste
- Saute the onions in oil for 1 minute or till they are soft.
- Add the lettuce and cauliflower and saute for 2 minutes.
- Add two cups of water and salt to taste and cook over medium flame for 10 minutes.
- Once cooked, allow it to cool. Then, blend it into a puree.
- Serve at room temperature.
Masoor dal and palak khichdi
Red lentils, also known as masoor dal, are a good source of iron, protein, fibre, and minerals. Masoor dal contains 14 grams of protein, 8 grams of dietary fibre, 44.5 grams of carbohydrate, and 6 milligrams of iron per cup. Palak or spinach is rich in many nutrients, including Vitamin A, C, Vitamin K, iron, folate, and potassium.
- 1 cup rice
- ½ cup whole masoor dal
- 2 cups roughly chopped spinach (palak)
- ½ tsp cardamom powder
- Add ½ tsp turmeric powder
- ½ tsp cinnamon powder (dalchini)
- 1 tbsp tomato puree
- 2 tsp ghee
- Salt to taste
- Wash the rice and masoor dal and soak for 15 minutes.
- Wash the spinach leaves and blend into a puree; strain it to avoid any rough fibres
- Heat ghee inside a pressure cooker, and add the cardamom powder, turmeric powder and cinnamon powder.
- Add the tomato puree.
- Finally, add the washed rice, masoor dal and spinach puree.
- Add salt and 3 cups of water.
- Pressure cook till 3-4 whistles.
- Once cooked, add a tbsp of ghee and serve at room temperature.
Chilled cucumber soup
Cucumber is a rich water source, contains Vitamin K and A, and has a cooling effect on mouth sores while providing nutrients to the patient. The honey, lime juice, and yoghurt added to the soup have healing properties that will aid in reducing inflammation and pain.
- One peeled cucumber
- 1 cup yoghurt or curd (not too sour)
- 1 tsp lemon juice
- One tsp pure honey
- 1 tsp delicate chopped mint leaves
- 1-2 pods of garlic
- Salt to taste
- Add all ingredients to a blender and blend till smooth
- Refrigerate for four hours.
- Serve chilled.
Pumpkin Apple soup
Pumpkin contains vital nutrients such as vitamins A, B1, B6, and C, copper, fiber, folate, and manganese. It provides calcium, potassium, and magnesium, which can help maintain blood pressure. On the other hand, one medium apple provides about 95 calories, 0 gram fat, 1 gram protein, 25 grams carbohydrate, 19 grams sugar (naturally occurring), and 3 grams fibre.
- 2 cups peeled and cubed pumpkins
- 1 cup peeled and cubed apples
- ¼ cup chopped onions
- Two tbs oil
- 1 tsp chopped garlic
- Salt to taste
- Heat oil in a pan.
- Saute garlic and onions on medium flame.
- Add pumpkin and apples, and saute for 1 minute.
- Add salt and 2 cups of water to cook.
- Cover the pan with a lid and cook for 20 minutes or till pumpkins are soft.
- Once cooked, cool and blend in a mixer or blender.
- To make the soup thicker, add the blended mix to the pan and cook to the right consistency.
Carrot Onion soup
Carrots are a good source of several vitamins and minerals, especially biotin, potassium, and vitamins A (from beta carotene), K1 (phylloquinone), and B6. Vitamin A: Carrots are rich in beta carotene, which your body converts into vitamin A. Onions contain decent amounts of vitamin C, folate, vitamin B6, and potassium, which provide several benefits and add flavour and taste to the soup.
- Two carrots, chopped into cubes
- 1 cup finely chopped onions
- 1 tsp cumin powder
- ½ tsp turmeric powder
- ¼ tsp cinnamon powder
- 2 cups vegetable stock
- 1 cup milk
- One tbsp fresh cream
- 1 tbsp butter
- Salt to taste
- In a pan, heat the butter and add the onions. Saute till soft.
- Add the cumin powder, turmeric powder and cumin powder to the onions.
- Add the carrots, cover the pan and cook till the carrots are soft.
- Once cooked and cooled, add the mix to a blender with the milk and the stock.
- Once blended, transfer it back to the pan to boil.
- Add salt to taste and serve with a garnish of fresh cream.
Curd rice is a well known cooling meal known for its calming effect on mouth and stomach ulcers. It is also loaded with riboflavin, Vitamin A, Vitamin B6, Vitamin B12, and pantothenic acid and is loaded with organic acids like lactic acid that help absorb nutrients and microminerals.
- ½ cup pre-cooked, soft rice
- 1 ½ cup water
- One cup curd
- 1 tsp oil
- ½ tsp mustard seeds
- ½ tsp ginger, finely chopped
- Half tsp cumin seeds
- ½ tsp asafoetida (hing)
- A few curry leaves
- Salt as per taste
- Mix the rice with the curd and water.
- Add salt to taste.
- Heat oil in a pan, and add the mustard and cumin seeds.
- Once they splutter, add the ginger and curry leaves.
- Once the curry leaves turn crisp, add the asafoetida (hing).
- Now, pour the hot oil mixture into the curd rice. It’s ready to serve.