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Flinders Medical Centre 
 

Liver Failure Program 

Nutrition Action Plan 
 

 
 
 
 

FOR PEOPLE WITH CIRRHOSIS   A CHRONIC LIVER DISEASE, GOOD 

NUTRITION  IS AN IMPORTANT PART OF YOUR TOTAL CARE. 
 
 

 
 

 
 
 
 

MODERATE TO 
SEVERE 

MALNUTRITION IS 
COMMON 

IN PEOPLE WITH 
CIRRHOSIS 

Symptoms of malnutrition: 

&gt;  weight loss 

&gt;  pale skin 

&gt;  hair loss 

&gt;  muscle wasting 

&gt;  mental confusion 
 
 

Malnutrition may also cause: 

&gt;  weight loss 

&gt;  pale skin 

&gt;  hair loss 

&gt;  muscle wasting 

&gt;  mental confusion 
 
 
 
 
 
 

 
PROTEIN  IS A 

CRITICAL 
NUTRIENT FOR 
PEOPLE WITH 

CIRRHOSIS 

Protein is needed for: 
 

Growth, development, repair and maintenance of 

body tissues. 
 

As liver function worsens, so does its ability to make 

protein. The body then uses muscle protein to function 

and this results in muscle wasting and weakness. 
 
 

Other vitamins &amp; minerals are also at risk: 

Vitamins A, D, E K, B Group and iron. 



EATING ADDITIONAL NUTRIENTS  IS NOT EASY, 

ESPECIALLY IF YOUR  APPETITE IS POOR 
 

 
 
 

Suggestions to improve your eating 
 

&gt;  Small frequent meals (4   7 times a day) if it is difficult to eat normal 
meal sizes 

&gt;  Eat nourishing  snacks between meals 

&gt;  Drink nourishing fluids 

&gt;  Limit low kilojoule (diet) foods and drinks 

&gt;  Eat high protein and energy foods 

&gt;  Keep snacks prepared  ( more likely to eat if food is readily available) 

&gt;  Serve small portions of a variety of foods 

&gt;  Cold foods can be more appealing 

&gt;  Try Favourite foods 

&gt;  Easy to eat foods (ice-cream, custards) 
 
 
 
 

If nausea is a problem: 
 

&gt;  Avoid skipping meals (an empty stomach can worsen nausea) 

&gt;  Eat &amp; drink slowly suck on barley sugar or mints 

&gt;  Rest in an upright position after eating 

&gt;  Wear loose clothing 

&gt;  Get plenty of fresh air 

&gt;  Avoid highly spiced, oversweet, fatty or fried foods 

&gt;  Avoid cooking smells 

&gt;  Sip fluids frequently 

&gt;  Avoid overfilling the stomach 

&gt;  Limit or avoid caffeine 

&gt;  Cold carbonated drinks may help 

&gt;  Include high carbohydrate foods e.g. biscuits, cereal, toast with honey 
 

 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 
 

For more information 
 

Liver Failure Program 
 

Flinders Medical Centre 

Telephone: (08) 8204 6989 

www.flinders.sa.gov.au 
 

If you do not speak English, request an interpreter from 

SA Health and the department will make every effort to 

provide you with  an interpreter in your language. 

  Department for Health and Ageing, 

Government  of South Australia. All rights reserved. 

 
 

 

 
http://www.ausgoal.gov.au/creative-commons 

 
Version Date from Date to Amendment 

1.0 April 2009 May 2015 Template changes 

2.0 Nov 2017 Nov 2019 Reviewed Nov 2017   nil changes 

 




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