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Nutrition and Care


Good nutrition plays a vital role in the health of a person with Cystic Fibrosis. This cannot be underestimated or understated. Nutrition care is an important focus of attention in CF care and your dietician will meet with you regularly throughout the year to make sure you/your child are reaching and maintaining your nutrition goals. These include height and weight but also vitamin levels. Years of research through the CF patient registry has shown the following:

1- Maintaining normal growth and weight that is average or above average is associated with better lung function, less frequent infections and hospitalizations in people with CF.

2- Monitoring nutrition and growth is very important in CF because, as a group, infants, children, adolescents and adults with CF have heights and weights that are below average for their age and sex.

3- Poor growth and lower than average weight are both correlated with decreased lung function in people with CF.


Impact of CF on Nutrition

    • Chronic lung inflammation increases calorie and protein needs so children and adults with CF need more calories than a child without CF
    • Appetite and food intake are often affected by illness so treating infections early can help keep appetite and weight stable. Decreased appetite and weight loss can also be a sign of illness
    • CF can cause a number of gastrointestinal issues which could results in loss of nutrients due to poor absorption, vomiting, and or discomfort associated with eating
    • Endocrine problems associated with CF cause abnormal metabolism (processing) of nutrients
    • Social and psychological issues can affect nutritional status in any age group


Click here to learn more about Nutrition through the Lifespan