It is extremely important for people with cystic fibrosis(CF) to establish a specific cystic fibrosis diet. People with CF have difficulty in absorbing nutrients from their food. This is due to mucus building up and blocking pancreatic enzymes from reaching the digestive tract. People with cystic fibrosis also lose a lot more salt from their sweat and become dehydrated more easily. This results in them needing much more calories, fats, salts, and water from their diet.
The dietary needs also depend on the stage of life. Younger children and teens with cystic fibrosis have a stronger need to consume more calories to support healthy growth. This includes calcium, proteins, zinc, and food rich in fat soluble vitamins (A, D, E, & K).
Adults with cystic fibrosis need a healthy diet that allows them to maintain an active lifestyle. Since the pancreatic enzymes cannot reach the digestive tract, one of the most important aspects of diet for cystic fibrosis is oral supplementation of enzymes. These aid in the absorption of nutrients and promote a longer, healthier life.
There are many considerations to diet with cystic fibrosis. But the three biggest factors to healthy living are:
- Caloric Intake
- Vitamin/Enzyme Supplementation
The reduced nutrient absorption by the digestive tract and increased loss of salt through sweat make it incredibly important for people with cystic fibrosis to consume enough calories and enzymes as well as maintain proper hydration.
Cystic Fibrosis Vitamins & Enzymes
The obstruction of pancreatic ducts by mucus buildup in cystic fibrosis prevents essential enzymes from reaching the digestive tract. These enzymes are integral in facilitating the absorption of fat soluble vitamins (A, D, E, & K). Supplementing the diet with these vitamins and consistent intake of enzymes to aid in absorption is essential for cystic fibrosis.
Cystic Fibrosis & Staying Hydrated
People with cystic fibrosis release a much higher quantity of salt in their sweat. Since the feeling of dehydration is signaled in the body by an imbalance of water to salts, people with CF often do not realize that they are under hydrated. It is extremely important for people with cystic fibrosis to make sure they are getting enough water to replenish the salts that they losing in their sweat to remain hydrated and healthy.
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Healthy Diet Tips for Cystic Fibrosis
One of the key digestive problems associated with cystic fibrosis is that the ducts that carry pancreatic enzymes to the digestive tract get blocked by mucus build up. Without these enzymes, the body cannot sufficiently digest and absorb the proper nutrients from food. Read about dietary habits you can implement to help lead a healthy life with cystic fibrosis.
Healthy Recipes & Snacks for Cystic Fibrosis
It is more difficult for the digestive tracts of people with cystic fibrosis to absorb nutrients from food. This makes it important to snack throughout the day, making sure that your body is getting enough calories, vitamins, and minerals to be healthy. Learn about a few delicious snacks that can help you maintain a healthy caloric intake throughout the day.
Living with Cystic Fibrosis
There is a lot involved in the life of people with cystic fibrosis. If you meet somebody who is not familiar with cystic fibrosis or if you’d like to learn more about living with CF, we have a brief overview to educate people on living with cystic fibrosis. You can find links to more CF topics as well and continue expanding your knowledge.
Become part of the IV Solutions CF Family
IV Solutions isn’t just a pharmacy for cystic fibrosis medications, we’re a personalized CF treatment provider. We customize each patient program to set them up for the best therapy outcomes.
We understand how important independence is when it comes to cystic fibrosis medications and treatments. IV Solutions helps you take an active role in your CF treatment.
IV Solutions makes sure you’re NEVER ALONE in the fight against cystic fibrosis. We’re here to support you through individualized instruction, proactive refill reminders, on-going care coordination, 1 on 1 counseling, and clinical intervention.
IV Solutions is an active participant and promoter of the CF Community. Visit our Facebook page for more resources on cystic fibrosis. If you’re interested in enrolling in an individualized CF care plan, visit our patient page and contact us today.
Cystic Fibrosis and Dietary Needs According to Age. CFChef. Sept 16, 2014. Accessed Sept 9, 2015
Nutrition. Cystic Fibrosis Foundation. July 21, 2015. Accessed Sept 9, 2015
Vitamins. Cystic Fibrosis Medicine. April 2008. Accessed Sept 9, 2015