Diet for Multiple Myeloma

As part of your treatment and recovery, you will need to meet with a trained nutritionist or dietician, who will evaluate your weight, food intake and recommend the necessary changes to your diet. A proper diet for Multiple Myeloma is generally customized to suit each individual case as symptoms of the condition vary from person to person. Throughout your treatment and recovery period, your nutrition status will be monitored and modifications will be made accordingly. On the whole, you will be encouraged to follow a diet that is more plant-based and consisting of whole grains, fresh fruit and vegetables, legumes, and fish. Foods such as red meat, junk food, and processed food will have to be avoided. In case you have undergone a stem cell transplant, it is even more important to adhere to the diet guidelines set by your doctor and nutritionist. This is because you are much more vulnerable to infections after such a transplant. In such cases, a neutropenic diet is recommended. This means that you will have to avoid any raw or uncooked foods as well as unpasteurized dairy products.

Multiple myeloma and the different treatments used can cause a number of unpleasant side effects and complications. These include nausea, diarrhea, fatigue, and constipation. Some treatments can even result in malnutrition or weight loss. This can affect your recovery and lengthen the time taken to return to normal. Nutritional therapy suggestions during this time include:

  • Increasing your fiber intake to prevent constipation
  • Eating several small meals a day rather than three big meals to prevent fatigue and increase energy
  • Eating a bland diet that is low in fat to counter nausea and vomiting. Consuming ginger or peppermint can also help reduce nausea
  • You may need to take folic acid and iron supplements in case you develop anemia
  • A protein-rich diet will help return low blood counts to normal levels as well