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Nutrition during treatment

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cindylou416
cindylou416 Member Posts: 33

Hi everyone

I was curious to know what everyone is doing with respect to nutrition during treatment…. Is anyone doing juicing? Green smoothies? Any tips on the proper diet to stay well and have some energy?

Thank you

Cindy

Comments

  • maggiehopley
    maggiehopley Member Posts: 121
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    I think it really depends on what your treatment regimen is. Both my neoadjuvant and adjuvant chemo treatments left me with taste changes and gastrointestinal issues that limited what I could eat. Fresh vegetables, like salads, were a huge no-no because they made me throw up. I ate a lot of easily digested "white" foods like mashed potatoes, cheerios, toast, etc. I could eat vegetables that were very well cooked such as canned green beans or baked beans. I could eat applesauce but not apples. I drank Orgain Protein shakes and gatorade. Now that I am finally finished with active treatment (14 1/2 months later), I am able to re-introduce more nutritious foods.

  • maggie15
    maggie15 Member Posts: 1,081
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    Nutritionists recommend staying hydrated and eating enough protein so that the good cells damaged by treatment can recover. As maggiehopley said, what you eat depends on what your side effects are. I ended out with severe anemia so I had to eat red meat and iron fortified cereals. I then had to deal with the GI issues from the iron I was prescribed. Some people have minimal side effects so what you can eat depends on your situation.

    If you take supplements you should let your doctors know what they are before treatment starts. Some antioxidants lessen the effectiveness of the toxins. I had to temporarily stop taking vitamin A prescribed by an oral surgeon to help heal a bone infection since it would lessen the effectiveness of radiation. A multivitamin is OK but you don't want to take anything that will reduce the benefit of chemo or radiation.

  • rlschaller
    rlschaller Member Posts: 56
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    For me, changing to a mostly vegan diet with eggs while living with active cancer has been good. During the 6 months I was not active with cancer though I sometimes ate chicken and fish). Being mostly vegetariean has helped me feel good and manage side effects with foods. I'm a book learner/lover and these helped me enormously:

    Your Life In Your Hands by Jane Plant, PhD. Love this book, I have read it 3 times and refer to it often.  This is the one I recommend for you to take a look at, I think you'll like it. It guides everything I eat and do! Has scientific articles and research which underpin the narrative, plus the author's personal story after 5 instances of cancer, and her journey to being healthy and cancer free. My go to book. And I love these Cookbooks: for foods and nourishing teas:
    The Cancer-Fighting Kitchen: by Rebecca Katz and Mat Edelson helped so much during the rough chemo times. I started here. And Forks over Knives by Del Sroufe is wonderful for a full variety of plant based recipes. These all have tasty recipes and when I have appetite - yummy!. And if you are interested in playing with vegan, the Physicians for Responsible Medicine Committee has a 21 day vegan challenge which I loved! Which led me to The Vegan Kickstarter app and recipes which were amazing.

    Hope this is helpful, happy to share specific recipes if you are interested as well. Just let me know.

  • rlschaller
    rlschaller Member Posts: 56
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    Oh, and yes to juicing! I make fresh carrot juice, and granny smith apple with celery. I have an old Jack LaLane juicer I pulled out lol.

  • doodler
    doodler Member Posts: 40
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    I'm just about to start meds (as of tomorrow) so I don't know how my tastebuds or bowels might be affected, but I do know to avoid grapefruit and pomegranate since I'm taking ribociclib. Which is too bad - I used to love them both!

    Otherwise, I'll be filling up on fruits and veggies, and staying hydrated. Meat in moderation. But I've been trying to stick to that for over a year. I lost around 30 pounds last year, deliberately. Dieted all spring and summer. I've been stable at 170 pounds and want to keep myself from creeping back up there.

    Also, no more alcohol now.

    My plan right now is to take meds in the morning, with food. I think I'll be eating more scrambled eggs to get protein in there.

  • rlschaller
    rlschaller Member Posts: 56
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    Hope your starting of meds again has been going smoothly! I also lost 20 lbs when I swtiched to mostly Vegan with eggs diet. But as a lover of red wine, which totally stopped when I was diagnosed last year, I think the lower calories has helped that cause a lot.

    I am also eating loads of vegies and fruits, love the new juices I am making in the morning. And I've just started making Ginger, Peppermint, and Green tea. A great recipe from the Cancer Fighting Kitchen cookbook.

    4 cups of water - bring to a boil and add:

    Sliced ginger (peeled into 1/4 inch slices about, the size of half your thumb)

    Boiled/simmered covered for 10 minutes.

    Turn off heat. Add Peppermint and Green tea - tea bags, cover and steep for 10 minutes

    Yummy

  • rlschaller
    rlschaller Member Posts: 56
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    I hope the starting of your meds has been relatively easy for you! I too lost weight, 20lbs when I switched to the vegan + eggs diet (fish in moderation) that I am on now. I also gave up alcohol, was a red wine drinker for years, and the decreased calories from the wine also contributed to slimming down I'm sure. I loved the ritual of it, but I'm ok without it.

    Love my vegies, and love cooking. Am very glad my taste buds are still relatively functioning, just a slight metallic taste in my mouth from the Enertu.

    Something I just started (in addition to making the juices in the morning) is making Ginger tea. This tea recipe comes from the Cancer Fighting Cookbook:

    Boil 4 cups of water

    Slice peeled fresh ginger into 1/4 slices, about the size of half your thumb. Boil/simmer covered for 10 minutes

    Then add peppermint and green tea - tea bags and steep covered for 10 minutes.

  • pinkrules
    pinkrules Member Posts: 97
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    Hi Cindy. When I'm feeling exhausted I make myself a carrot, celery, and an apple into a juice in my mixer. Its amazing how it re-energizes me and I'm then able to do my exercises. I'm going to try the ginger recipe that a few here recommended! I also cut out my nightly white wine drinking. I read that wine increases estrogen, something we do not want! I don't know how true that is but makes sense to me. Good luck, Cindy!

  • rlschaller
    rlschaller Member Posts: 56
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    I make a Granny Smith apple, celery and fennel juice combo, and find it be a really good energizer. It is also really good for your hair to keep it thick and growing well after chemo.

  • cindylou416
    cindylou416 Member Posts: 33
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    Thank you for your responses! I have chosen a very similar food regimen, lots of fruits and vegetables, oatmeal, nuts, and seeds and almond butter. I have been making lentil curry, i eat salmon, and I do like baked tofu.

    I drink herbal tea, green tea, water, or seltzer water and that’s it. The juices sound wonderful I would love to try carrot juice and the apple celery juice. Thank you for sharing and thank you for the great book recommendations I love to read, and these will be so helpful!

    cindy

  • rlschaller
    rlschaller Member Posts: 56
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    I love lentil curries and baked tofu. Anyone have good marinades they love for baked tofu? My go to is soy sauce or tamari, olive oil and garlic and then baked covered for 40 minutes. Simple but yummy. Would love to hear what you do and love!

  • artwish
    artwish Member Posts: 20
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    I am approaching the 2 year mark of treatment. Only recently have I been doing better with eating and little side effects. I have been losing weight for 3 years. I went from size 10 to size 4. I was always a big eater and enjoyed food. Now I have to be very careful anything can set me off. Going out or over to friends for dinner are my main social events these days. However,at freinds, I do not ask for special foods and always sample what is served which often causes discomfort the next day. I also no longer drink alcohol but I never was a big drinker and do not miss it.

    At a breast cancer meeting the had a hand out for Laurea's Purple Drink which I have found to be very good. A 5 vegetables and 5 fruits smoothy. It freezes well ,so now that summer is here I am making pop cycles and adding sparkling water to thin it for a more refreshing drink.

    1 tomato. 1cucumber. 1 beet with leaves. 1 large carrot. 1 cup celery. 1 apple. 1 cup strawberries.

    1cup pineapple. 1 cup grapes. 1/8 cup goji berries. Water to the consistency you like

    Puree and drink at least once a day.

    This makes a lot and if you thin it really can take a while to finish all of it. Might want to freeze part of it before you thin it. When I make the pop cycles, I do not thin it.

    I hope you find this helpful.

  • kaynotrealname
    kaynotrealname Member Posts: 422
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    I did change my nutrition somewhat but not a lot. I don't juice but I try to eat very healthy and limit sugar and dairy and processed food. The only thing I completely gave up was alcohol but almost have given up processed meats. The biggest change for me was exercise. I exercise every day. It may be light but I always do something physical now.

  • threetree
    threetree Member Posts: 1,477
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    https://foodforbreastcancer.com/

    Some might find the above website interesting/helpful re nutrition and cancer treatment.

  • amel_83
    amel_83 Member Posts: 169
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    That smootie sound good, thank you!

    I also try to eat ealthy, a bit of everything, mostly veggies and legumes, nuts, whole cereals. Some fruit but not too much. Some eggs and fish. No dairy products because I just prefere not too, and no meat.

    Try to keep low in folate because of Xeloda, I had my feet at a point that were like sun burned! But not anymore.

    A lot of exercise too!

  • bailey.boo
    bailey.boo Member Posts: 166
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    THANK YOU for posting this, @threetree. I had no idea the list of the things I’ve been putting into my body in the name of “alternative” while I was waiting for answers could be the exact opposite of helpful 😳 Here I thought I was being smart, but man was I clueless. I have a box full of stuff to toss now. This reinforces the idea that I need to find a nutritionist.

  • threetree
    threetree Member Posts: 1,477
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    Your quite welcome. Back when this forum was bigger and better, many knew about this website and would refer to it from time to time. I still do. When I was first diagnosed I found it extremely helpful and interesting.

  • rlschaller
    rlschaller Member Posts: 56
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    I love the smoothie recipe you posted , I will have to try it. And what a great idea to make juice pops!
    I juice every other day carrots and ginger , and apple and fennel. And drink pomegranate juice, tart cherry juice, and plan to start drinking barley green grass juice..lol I’ll have to add some mango or grape to it for flavor!

    I also follow the healing diet The Plant Program , by Dr. Jane Plant which I love. Recommend it.
    and exercise too, some yoga and Chi gong. Feels good and helps my body copy with all the treatments.

    Happy Mother’s Day to all

  • artwish
    artwish Member Posts: 20
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    Hope you find the 5+5 smoothy as helpful as I have.

    Kale is my other helper. Found that steaming sweet potatoes with kale and some onion a real treat. The sweet potato counters the bitter kale for a very nice side dish but I am still testing. May add mushrooms next time to make it a meal.

  • rlschaller
    rlschaller Member Posts: 56
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    @artwish love Kale! I add it to the smoothie and it’s great. A variation I like is 2 handfuls of Kale, 2 cups of frozen strawberries and 1 cup of frozen mango , tbls of almond butter , chia seeds and 2 cups of water. Yummy! I’ll try our sweet potatoe recipe next.