Breanna Price: Helping Cancer Patients Eat Healthy
Breanna Price specializes in table talk. However, her conversations are not idle dinner chatter. She offers expert advice on healthy eating to patients battling cancer.
Breanna is the registered dietitian at UT Health San Antonio MD Anderson Cancer Center. In her role, she assists patients undergoing treatment as well as those who have completed treatments.
“I love food and cooking,” she says. “I enjoy giving patients advice on meal planning and healthy eating to help them cope with the effects of cancer and their treatment.”
Breanna provides one-on-one nutrition counseling, tailoring diet recommendations for each patient’s needs. Some struggle with weight loss, others may be dealing with swallowing issues,” she explains. “Every patient has different needs.”
The Texas native, who grew up in a small town near Victoria, is a licensed dietician, certified by the state of Texas. She earned a Bachelor of Science in Biology from the University of Texas at San Antonio.
Her credentials include a Masters of Dietetics Studies from the UT Health San Antonio. In addition to her cancer center duties, she serves as a clinical dietician at CHRISTUS Santa Rose Hospital.
During college, Breanna surveyed diets and was involved in a research study that served meals to seniors. Her early experiences motivated her to pursue the “clinical side” of a healthy diet.
She applies her knowledge to each individual patient. “I work with those going through treatment as well as survivors,” she explains. “Those who have completed treatments want to know how to prevent a recurrence of the disease.”
Some patients may be suffering from severe weight loss. Others may be taking their nourishment through a feeding tube. Each case requires a specialized diet, not some cookie-cutter approach.
That is where Breanna excels. “The needs vary with each patient. I consult with the referring cancer center doctors to make sure that the dietary plan is right for that particular patient.”
Her duties include operating the cancer center's Nutritional Supplement Assistance Program and overseeing the closed pantry project in cooperation with the Food Bank and the cancer center Council volunteers.
“We have patients who can’t afford to purchase the food they need,” Breanna points out. “We have nutritious food on site that we can give to patients to help with the cost of groceries.”
Not just cancer patients and survivors can benefit from healthy eating, underscores Breanna. Everyone can live healthier lives by adopting the federal government’s guidelines for nutrition.
She recommends people follow the current nutrition guide published by the U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA). The information provides details about portion sizes and food groups.
Click here to be directed to Choose My Plate.