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Folic Acid

aleftina
Posts: 102
Joined: Nov 2003

Did anyone's onc warned about folic acid and Xeloda/5FU not going together? Mine did and now I don't know what to do, do I stop taking my multy-vitamin and mineral and also I was taking B Complex in addition for neuropathy. PLEASE LET ME KNOW YOU HEARD OF IT.

pattieb
Posts: 176
Joined: Mar 2003

No my onc never said anything like that, but when I was starting my 1st chemo he did tell me no vitamins. Said they didn't mix well witth the chemo but I wasn't taking xeloda.
Pattie

aspaysia's picture
aspaysia
Posts: 257
Joined: Nov 2003

I was told to take a 50mg vitamin B6 every day with my regime of Oaliplatin/Xeloda/5FU. I was already taking a multivitamin formula with 50mgs of all the Bs and my onc said that was ok. Nothing about no folic acid--the formula contained a standard dose of 400mcg.

2bhealed's picture
2bhealed
Posts: 2084
Joined: Dec 2001

Dr. Patrick Quillin's book helps one manuever through the supplement/chemo questions:
Beating Cancer with Nutrition. I highly recommend getting it and reviewing it. Ther are supplements that will actually enhance your chemo's activity that the oncologists may not be aware of. Obviously not all oncologists are up on their supplement/vitamin/chemo knowledge so check it out. It's worth the price of the book IMO.

peace, emily

aleftina
Posts: 102
Joined: Nov 2003

My onc doesn't mind ANY vitamins, only Folic Acid! It's the law in the office: no folic acid! He said it workds against it. I will get Beating Cancer with Nutrition book though. Seems I could use one. I hope it's not all juice diet type thing though.

2bhealed's picture
2bhealed
Posts: 2084
Joined: Dec 2001

Don't worry Tina--It's NOT the juice diet. That would be a ton of other books! :-)

This one tells you exactly which supplements do what for which cancers. It is an invaluable resource no matter how you eat.

The way I understand it Leucovorin is a B vitamin....the 5 FU takes you to the brink and the leucovorin brings you back.

Here is an example:

"Vitamin E combined with Vitamin K, leucovorin (anti-metabolite cancer drug), and 5FU significantly enhanced the cell growth inhibition curves for 5FU." pg 236

"One of the most troublesome side effects of chemotherapy is peripheral neuropathy, or a tingling numbness in the extremities. Low Vitamin E status is likely to blame for the peripheral neuropathy."

"On one side of the fence stand the oncologists who have used the chemotherapy drug methotrexate for decades as an antagonist to the B vitamin, folic acid, to slow cancer growth, with leucovorin (folinic acid) as the rescue agent to summon the patient back from near death, or the 'vital frontier'. On the other side stand nutritionists who understand the pivotal role that folic acid plays in HEALTHY cell growth." pg 249 (emphasis is author's)

So I think that may answer your folic acid question as to why you onc told you that. He stands on that side of the fence. You choose.

Hope this helps!

peace, emily the radical alternative drug free chick!

aleftina
Posts: 102
Joined: Nov 2003

Thank you, 2behealed! I ordered it from http://www.alldirect.com/, it was $15 compared with $24 on Amazon! Can't wait to read it now. I was impressed with all the books he has written on healing foods, I will probably oreder the other ones too. Thanks again! Tina

efw
Posts: 20
Joined: Jul 2003

My onc told me to avoid folic acid because leucovorin consists primarily of folic acid, and I'd basically be overdosing on the stuff if I took any supplements containing it. Someone had recommended I drink protein drinks (like Boost) to help keep my energy up during chemo, but I had to avoid that because there's a lot of folic acid in there.

aleftina
Posts: 102
Joined: Nov 2003

Thanks everybody for your replies, so I know my onc is not a nut. But what do you do about the vitamins, where can you find a supplement without the folic acid?

aleftina
Posts: 102
Joined: Nov 2003

I wrote to the neuropathic doctor who prescribed the supplements about my concerns and here is what he said:

"There has been research on combining Xeloda and leucovorin, which is a drug related to folic acid, that shows that giving large doses of leucovorin (like we would with the chemo drug 5-FU) can slightly increase the toxicity of Xeloda. The doses that have been shown to cause this increased toxicity are approximately 60 mg per day, which equals 60,000 mcg. The total amount of folic acid (not leucovorin) combined in the Multi-Nutrients and B6+B-Complex that we recommended to you is 1600 mcg. This is only about 2% of the dose that has been shown to slightly increase side effects. In our experience using this combination of nutrients with Xeloda, we tend to get LESS side effects, not more."

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