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Head and Neck Cancer Patients Do Not Meet Recommended Intakes of Micronutrients without Consuming Fortified Products

Nejatinamini, Sara, Kubrak, Catherine, Álvarez-Camacho, Mirey, Baracos, Vickie E., Ghosh, Sunita, Wismer, Wendy V., Mazurak, Vera C.
Nutrition and cancer 2018 v.70 no.3 pp. 474-482
desserts, dietary recommendations, dietary supplements, energy intake, enteral feeding, folic acid, food intake, head and neck neoplasms, magnesium, meat, milk, oils, patients, potatoes, soups, sugars, vitamin D, weight loss
This study assessed dietary and micronutrient intakes of head and neck cancer (HNC) patients at key points in the disease trajectory and evaluated the contribution of oral nutritional supplements (ONS) to micronutrient intake. HNC patients (n = 114) completed a three-day dietary record and a tool to assess Nutrition Impact Scores (NIS) at baseline, post-treatment, and follow-up. Foods were classified into food categories. Micronutrient, protein, and energy intakes were compared to European Society for Parenteral and Enteral Nutrition guidelines for cancer patients. The majority of patients did not meet recommended dietary intakes for vitamins D, E, C, folate, and magnesium at any study time point. Relative to baseline, the proportion of calories from milk, soup, and ONS significantly increased at post-treatment, while grain, meat, potato, baked dessert, and oil and sugar decreased (P < 0.03). At all study time points, patients categorized as high ONS consumers (>15% of total daily calories from ONS) had higher intakes of micronutrients (P < 0.003). They also had a higher NIS (P = 0.006) and experienced greater weight loss (P < 0.04) during the study, despite having similar energy intake to patients consuming <15% kcal from ONS. Fortification of usually consumed foods to improve micronutrient intake among cancer patients should be evaluated.