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Fortisip® is a pre-mixed drink similar to a milkshake that comes in many varieties and flavors. The original drink contains all the vitamins, nutrients, and other essentials one needs in a complete, balanced diet. Thus, people with diseases that cause weak appetite, malnutrition and unhealthy weight loss often use this product. Other Fortisip® brand varieties may be taken as a supplement to the diet and have few reported side effects.
The original Fortisip® drink contains about 300 calories (1260 kJ). This relatively small drink is, therefore, considered high-energy for those who find it difficult to eat enough calories every day due to sickness. Proteins and carbohydrates in the shake also aid in keeping energy levels up, which may be crucial for proper bodily functions such as a strong immune system.
Each drink also contains a substantial amount of the vitamins and minerals a body needs to stay healthy. Calcium, magnesium and vitamin D can promote bone density. Iron may ward off anemia and aid the body’s production of blood. Omega-3 and omega-6 amino acids could help keep brain function and muscles strong through ailments that prevent individuals from exerting themselves physically.
Fortisip®drinks can be a helpful supplement for most people, but they are generally given to those suffering from debilitating diseases that can cause malnutrition. Many types of cancer, as well as the radiation therapy often associated with fighting this disease, may leave a patient feeling weak. A loss of appetite is another typical result of chemotherapy, surgeries, or intestinal diseases. It can, therefore, be difficult for patients of these diseases to ingest enough foods and liquids to meet the daily nutrition requirements to aid in recovery.
There are many types of Fortisip® drink. One type contains extra fiber; another is extremely calorie-dense for an energy boost. Some drinks can be used as complete food replacements, even acting as the lone nutrient source. Many of the new varieties from this brand, however, do not contain a full daily allotment of calories and nutrients and should, therefore, only be taken as a supplement.
Most doctors will not recommend Fortisip® to children under the age of 3. Six year-olds may be too young to use the drink as a complete source of nutrition. The shakes are lactose- and gluten-free, making them safe for most people. People who have difficulty breaking down galactose, however, are asked not to use these products.
Many of the drinks come in a neutral milk flavor and chocolate or vanilla varieties. Fruity and savory flavors are also available for certain Fortisip® products. It is important for individuals to keep in mind that these drinks are not meant to promote weight loss like a diet shake.
This drink -- or ones very much like it -- are common in cancer wards where malnutrition is common because some people suffer from loss of appetite following chemotherapy treatments.
That's the thing about chemotherapy -- it can be almost as hard on the body as the cancer it is designed to treat.