Examining guidelines and new evidence in oncology nutrition: a position paper on gaps and opportunities in multimodal approaches to improve patient care Journal Articles uri icon

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  • Abstract Malnutrition, muscle loss, and cachexia are prevalent in cancer and remain key challenges in oncology today. These conditions are frequently underrecognized and undertreated and have devastating consequences for patients. Early nutrition screening/assessment and intervention are associated with improved patient outcomes. As a multifaceted disease, cancer requires multimodal care that integrates supportive interventions, specifically nutrition and exercise, to improve nutrient intake, muscle mass, physical functioning, quality of life, and treatment outcomes. An integrated team of healthcare providers that incorporates societies’ recommendations into clinical practice can help achieve the best possible outcomes. A multidisciplinary panel of experts in oncology, nutrition, exercise, and medicine participated in a 2-day virtual roundtable in October 2020 to discuss gaps and opportunities in oncology nutrition, alone and in combination with exercise, relative to current evidence and international societies’ recommendations. The panel recommended five principles to optimize clinical oncology practice: (1) position oncology nutrition at the center of multidisciplinary care; (2) partner with colleagues and administrators to integrate a nutrition care process into the multidisciplinary cancer care approach; (3) screen all patients for malnutrition risk at diagnosis and regularly throughout treatment; (4) combine exercise and nutrition interventions before (e.g., prehabilitation), during, and after treatment as oncology standard of care to optimize nutrition status and muscle mass; and (5) incorporate a patient-centered approach into multidisciplinary care.


  • Prado, Carla M
  • Laviano, Alessandro
  • Gillis, Chelsia
  • Sung, Anthony D
  • Gardner, Maureen
  • Yalcin, Suayib
  • Dixon, Suzanne
  • Newman, Shila M
  • Bastasch, Michael D
  • Sauer, Abby C
  • Hegazi, Refaat
  • Chasen, Martin

publication date

  • April 2022