Many pancreatic cancer patients are not told about their potential need for pancreatic enzyme supplements and how critical pancreatic enzymes are for the breakdown and absorption of nutrients.
Pancreatic enzymes are created and secreted by the pancreas. They help break down fats, proteins and carbohydrates. It’s very common among pancreatic cancer patients to have an insufficient amount of these enzymes. When the pancreas does not produce enough enzymes to break down food, pancreatic enzyme products are needed.
We asked Maria Petzel, senior clinical dietitian for the Pancreas Surgery Program at MD Anderson Cancer Center and a member of the Scientific and Medical Advisory Board for the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network, about pancreatic enzymes and their importance.
“For those struggling to maintain or gain weight, enzymes may be the solution,” noted Petzel. “Taking enzymes and figuring out the right amount can make a huge difference in a patient’s quality of life.”
For more information, please visit our pancreatic enzymes overview.
Good nutritional care improves outcomes and is critical for your quality of life. The Pancreatic Cancer Action Network strongly recommends that patients have access to pancreatic enzymes and see a registered dietitian.
Pancreatic cancer patients and caregivers can access comprehensive disease information, including diet and nutrition tips, recipes and a booklet on the subject – all reviewed and approved by renowned leaders in the field – by contacting the Pancreatic Cancer Action Network’s one-on-one PanCAN Patient Services support service by phone or email.
Come back to our blog each week for more of the Friday Fix: Your Weekly Nutrition Supplement!