Chemotherapy and radiotherapy are important means to treat cancer, but they can kill cancer cells and damage other normal cells at the same time, resulting in a series of adverse reactions, such as loss of appetite, nausea, vomiting, etc., which seriously affect the quality of life of patients.
However, if we can pay attention to our diet, we may minimize these side effects.
So how should we adjust our diet?
Eight Suggestions for Combating Adverse Reactions
Make food more delicious
Patients during chemotherapy need more nutrition, but chemotherapy drugs often make people lose appetite. To make chemotherapy patients eat sweet, they have to work hard on the taste of food:
- Drink yogurt and vegetable soup; Eat some sweet snacks; When eating bread, wipe some peanut butter or other jam; Add lemon juice or white sugar to plain boiled water; Eat high protein foods (eggs, muscles, skim milk).
Making food taste richer may increase appetite.
Relieve oral ulcer
During chemotherapy, immunity will decrease, and some patients often have oral ulcer. To promote the healing of oral ulcer, you should avoid drinking alcohol and eat spicy and overheated stimulating food. Drink more water, rinse with light saline or mouthwash will prevent and promote ulcer healing.
How to relieve nausea
Ginger candy, mint candy or ginger tea can help reduce nausea. Eating cooler foods can reduce nausea than hot foods. In addition, avoid greasy, fried foods, foods with a lot of spices, and try to eat less Thai food.
Eat less and eat more
During chemotherapy, eating less and eating more is more conducive to the absorption of food nutrition and can relieve the symptoms of nausea and vomiting.
Drinking plenty of water is a good way to fight constipation. If you had eaten less of all kinds of high-cellulose foods before, Start to eat more vegetables, fruits and coarse grains with high cellulose content, such as bananas, pitaya, pineapples, mangoes, etc., but don’t worry, you should slowly adjust your diet. At the same time, do some appropriate exercises, such as walking, which is also helpful to gastrointestinal peristalsis and can improve constipation.
Prevention of diarrhea
When diarrhea occurs, eat less or no greasy food and fried food. At the same time, drink less coffee, sugary drinks, wine, fruit juice, various salads, raw food should also eat less. You can drink more porridge, eat more potatoes, pumpkin, etc.
Prevention of dehydration
Diarrhea and vomiting caused by chemotherapy may lead to dehydration. When the following conditions occur, you may have mild dehydration:
- Dry mouth or sticky mouth; Depression of eye socket; Less or darker urine; Tears are reduced.
The most important way to avoid dehydration is to drink a lot of water. Don’t wait until you are thirsty to think of drinking water.
Consult a nutritionist
A professional nutritionist can give useful suggestions on how to choose and match food materials and balance the intake of various nutrients to solve various dietary problems encountered during chemotherapy.
Abstinence from alcohol
During chemotherapy, the liver is responsible for metabolizing chemotherapy drugs and reducing drug toxicity. Drinking alcohol at this time will bring extra burden to the liver and reduce the efficiency of liver work.
At the same time, drinking will also aggravate gastrointestinal reactions such as nausea and vomiting.
Some chemotherapy drugs may react with alcohol, causing incalculable damage to the body.
Smoking is currently recognized as one of the most important public health problems in the world. It can increase the risk of occurrence and death of various malignant tumors (such as lung cancer, esophageal cancer, gastric cancer and liver cancer). Therefore, tumor patients need to quit smoking.
Use supplements with caution
Experts suggest that during chemotherapy, if you can take food orally normally, you do not need to take supplements of various vitamins, minerals and dietary fiber. They may react with chemotherapy drugs and affect the curative effect of drugs. If you are ready to take any supplements, it is recommended to communicate with your doctor first.
Consult a doctor when eating bean products.
If you get breast cancer, gastric cancer, hysteromyoma and other hormone-sensitive tumors. Eating bean products may affect the tumor. Before eating bean products, consult an oncologist to see if you need to adjust the chemotherapy plan or avoid bean products.
Responsible Editor: Jing Liu