CSN Login
Members Online: 19

Dumb Question...

BLKJAK
Posts: 108
Joined: Apr 2013

Now that I have kidney cancer, what can I safely drink? I have both of my kidneys so far but since this whole cancer thing started up I have limited myself to water or water with Mio (flavoring) in it. I have had the occasional lemonade. I will stay away from liquor and beer. I used to drink coffee all morning then a soda for lunch and then water. I'm trying to be nice to my kidneys so they maybe return the favor. Perhaps I am just being a goof and it doesn't matter. What are your thoughts?

Galrim's picture
Galrim
Posts: 274
Joined: Apr 2013

You can basically drink anything as long as not being excessive with it :-), including alcohol from time to time.

/G

Texas_wedge's picture
Texas_wedge
Posts: 2807
Joined: Nov 2011

and what you're doing is very sensible.  You don't need to punish yourself but plenty of water is a good idea and so is going easy on alcohol and coffee.  It's wise to avoid all colas like the plague - no fizzy drinks, no sugary drinks, not too much in the way of fruit juices either (and only fresh fruit with no added sugar).  A glass of red wine a day is good for you but if you don't like it forget that.  Mostly plain old water is the best.

BLKJAK
Posts: 108
Joined: Apr 2013

I don't mind red wine. Perhaps as a treat now and then. I have never been a big drinker, so it's not much of a loss to me. I do miss the coffee though.

Texas_wedge's picture
Texas_wedge
Posts: 2807
Joined: Nov 2011

Red wine is on the menu then.  You don't need to lay off the coffee completely - I shouldn't talk about it since I guzzle the stuff all day and night, much more than is good for me!  I try to substitute other drinks for coffee to hold my consumption down - tea (though off green tea until we know more about its reaction with Votrient), lemon and ginger, camomile, peppermint, almond milk - there are many alternatives.

The really important thing is not to touch sodas.  The odd one once in a while won't wreck you but they shouldn't be part of your regular intake (and that includes 'diet colas').

todd121
Posts: 571
Joined: Dec 2012

Two of my favorites! The problem I have with both of them, is what I eat and drink with them. I take my coffee with lots of cream and sugar. I just have never been able to stomach it without. I tried to switch to black coffee, but I just don't like it that way (which makes me wonder if it's the coffee I like, or the caffeine with sugar rush I'm getting!). Had to cut back on the coffee because of this. I still have it, but not every day and not twice a day like I used to.

Now the problem I had with red wine, was that I love to munch on cheese and nuts while I drink it. Salt and fat. The second problem I have with red wine, is that I'm rarely satisfied with 1 glass!

Both caffeine and alcohol do mess up your hydration, and alcohol screws around with your kidney's ability to manage the concentration of electrolytes in your blood. While thinking about this, I found this article and a few others helpful. http://pubs.niaaa.nih.gov/publications/arh21-1/84.pdf They describe there the effects of alcohol on blood levels of sodium, potassium, calcium, and phosphate, among others.

I don't completely abstain from them now, but I have drastically cut back. I have maybe a glass or two of wine a week at the most. Coffee, maybe 3-4 times a week. I have pretty much eliminated sodas, which wasn't hard for me. I used to be an iced tea fanatic. But I have had the same problem with tea that I have with coffee: I'm from the south and I like my tea Sweet. So, I've really pretty much stopped drinking iced sweet tea. I was taking in way too much sugar before.

I'm having to force myself to drink water. I hate the stuff. I link my avoidance of water and my diet to my kidney cancer (may not be accurate, but I know it wasn't good for me). So when I do drink a cup of coffee or a glass of wine, I make myself drink 2-3 glasses of water afterwards.

Oh, and I've eliminated salted nuts, salted chips, pretzels, and salted popcorn. I don't salt my food before I taste it either. In fact, I just keep my hand off the salt shaker these days. I used to salt everything. If I want to add something I add pepper or pepper sauces or other spices.

I agree with the advice to stay away from fruit juices, especially ones with added sugar. Also, dried fruits can be an issue. The problem with both is they are very high in calories for the small volume they take up. You can have them, if you have small amounts, but I have to be careful because I can't afford extra calories with my weight. Sugar is a problem for me.

Todd

BLKJAK
Posts: 108
Joined: Apr 2013

Crud....I was hoping for a more varied list of options. I really miss my coffee (with Splenda) and my Diet Mt. Dew. Oh well, maybe on my birthday to celebrate. I don't mind red wine, so I could slowly add that to my options. I am learning to like water more. What I find odd is that I used to like cold tap water. Now I find myself adding ice, which I never did. I guess everything is going to be different now. It beats dead though.

todd121
Posts: 571
Joined: Dec 2012

Haha. That's funny to hear you say it that way. I've been thinking that a lot since my diagnosis and surgery. It's what I tell myself all the time, and it works!

I've been learning that there are a lot of things worse than X (whatever X is, you name it).

So many things that beat being dead....having cancer, having one kidney, not being able to drink 3 glasses of iced tea a day, having to take pills every day, being tired, being nauseous, blah, blah...

Todd

Djinnie's picture
Djinnie
Posts: 769
Joined: Apr 2013

 

I have a very sweet tooth, however because of blood sugar problems I have had to cut my sugar intake. I found a herbalist who made natural stevia in liquid form. I have been using it for a couple of years for basically anything that requires sweetening. I buy the brown one in a dropper bottle, it last for ages and is not expensive. The herbalist imports the leaves from Mexico or South America, where it has been used for centuries. The Chinese have tried to enter the market and their product is synthetic and to be avoided.

Stevia has quite a lot of health benefits aside from being a good sweetener. It has a very slight nutty taste, it is great on cereals, fruit and in coffee. It might be worth looking in to. I can only say from personal experience it has not only helped me improve my blood sugar levels but I prefer it to sugar which now tastes awful.

 

Djinnie

NanoSecond's picture
NanoSecond
Posts: 526
Joined: Oct 2012

You can always substitute coconut milk half and half in your coffee for creamer.  It tastes almost the same.  Soy milk can work too - but to me it tastes awful.

todd121
Posts: 571
Joined: Dec 2012

I tried coconut cream. Maybe I misunderstood you when you mentioned that before? I had trouble getting it to dissolve. You meant coconut milk?

I like soy milk, actually, but one problem with it is if the coffee is very hot, it cooks it and it curdles and separates from the coffee before I have a chance to drink it.

Sugar is the real problem. I really don't think artificial sweeteners are good for me, but neither is the sugar. I guess  I'm stubborn like a 3 year old, and if I can't get what I want, I just don't want anything!

Todd

NanoSecond's picture
NanoSecond
Posts: 526
Joined: Oct 2012

Hi Todd,

Yes, I meant coconut milk - not creamer.  We just finished our last batch otherwise I would give you a brand name.

The problem with most creamers is that they usually contain carrageenan:

Carrageenan contributes to the reduction of certain liver enzymes (including the Cytochrome P450 complex which is critical for properly metabolizing most drugs including TKI's, etc.)

 

This is from nutritionist Ray Peat:

 

 

"When the bowel is inflamed, toxins are absorbed. The natural bacterial endotoxin produces many of the same inflammatory effects as the food additive, carrageenan.

 

 

Carrageenan produces inflammation and immunodeficiency, synergizing with estrogen, endotoxin and unsaturated fatty acids. Carrageenan has been found to cause colitis and anaphylaxis in humans, but it is often present in baby "formulas" and a wide range of milk products, with the result that many people have come to believe that it was the milk-product that was responsible for their allergic symptoms. Because the regulators claim that it is a safe natural substance, it is very likely that it sometimes appears in foods that don't list it on the label, for example when it is part of another ingredient.      

 

 

Carrageenan enters even the intact, un-inflamed gut, and damages both chemical defenses and immunological defenses. When it has produced inflammatory bowel damage, the amount absorbed will be greater, as will the absorption of bacterial endotoxin. Carrageenan and endotoxin synergize in many ways, including their effects on nitric oxide, prostaglandins, toxic free radicals, and the defensive enzyme systems. The continuing efficient production of energy is a basic aspect of metabolic defense, and this is interrupted by carrageenan and endotoxin. The energy failure becomes part of a vicious circle, in which permeability of the intestine is increased by the very factors that it should exclude.

Some other products that can contain carrageenan: apple cider; beer; hot dogs; prepared sauces; ice cream; baby formulas; chocolate milk; soy milk; sherbet; jam, jellies; cheese spreads; dressings; crackers; pastries; custard; evaporated milk; pressurized whipped cream; reduced fat meat products; processed meats; pates; diet sodas; toothpaste."

 

 

Djinnie's suggestion of using Stevia instead of sucrose (table sugar) is an excellent idea.  Still, it is always a good idea to try minimize adding sugar(s) to anything.  Most people have been "trained" to watch or limit their sodium (table salt) intake when they are concerned about their blood pressure. For cancer patients sugar can be a dangerous additive by virtue of its primary role in promoting inflammation and causing wide insulin spikes and the subsequent release of IGF1 (Insulin Growth Factor) and other tumor friendly hormones.  Not to mention its role in promoting metabolic syndrome (obesity, type II diabetes, non-alcoholic liver disease, etc.).

 

todd121
Posts: 571
Joined: Dec 2012

I'll try coconut milk. I shop in a Vietnamese/asian market so there are lots of coconut products available. I'll also try and avoid carrageenan, but you listed nearly everyone of my favorite foods. Lol. Well, not true. Occasional beer. Occasional processed meats. However, I'm certain it's in the Vietnamese ice coffee i drink 2-3 times a week which contains some imitation sweet cream that always upsets my stomach. Damn. I think I'm going to have to eliminate it.

I tried Stevia, but it doesn't dissolve easily and didn't seem to sweeten well. I do like the liquid sweetener Agave Nectar.

What do you think about the artificial sweetener aspartame? It contains phenylalanine, which is a natural amino acid, so I thought it might be a good sugar substitute. On the other hand, I thought it might be hard on the kidneys. However, I asked my nephrologist and he said it should be fine.

Todd

NanoSecond's picture
NanoSecond
Posts: 526
Joined: Oct 2012

Hi Todd,

I should add that anytime I post information it should always be put in a larger context. I too often find that there are many foods that I have regularly enjoyed but now have to think twice about.  For example, I went out to purchase a new carton of coconut milk creamer for my coffe today. (The brand name turns out to be "So Delicious"). But to my chagrin I realized that I had not paid any attention to my own advice - as it contains carrrageenan too! Oh well. I do try my best to cut out this kind of stuff - but compromises can (and should) be made.  The goal is always to cut back - but it is not going to be a disaster if a small amount ultimately slips through.

Keeping that in mind I will now give you some information about aspartame.  Again, please understand that I am only a messenger.  Each person needs to decide for themselves just what to do with this knowledge.  The following comes from Dr. Terry Wahls, author of "Minding My Mitochondria":

"The artificial sweetener aspartame is also found in NutraSweet and Equal. For some people, monosodium glutamate (MSG) and aspartame can cause an increase in glutamate, which in turn can lead to excito-toxicity; damaging and eventually killing brain cells. Excess glutamate can also cause neurological symptoms like headache, fatigue, and unexplained, vague neurological symptoms."

 

todd121
Posts: 571
Joined: Dec 2012

Good to know.

I actively try to avoid MSG. I often get headaches when I eat a meal high in MSG. Some Asian restaurants use it to excess.

I'm avoiding aspartame now too. If I really must sweeten something, I'm using honey. I just bought some raw agave nectar and I like it.

I bought coconut milk this time. But I bought a large carton, and noticed after I opened it that it should be drunk in 1-2 days after opening. That means I need to buy a much smaller carton next time! When it comes out, it's not well homogenized. Is it supposed to look like that? Even after shaking, it comes out separated. It does stir out eventually in the coffee. It's ok. I think I can get used to it.

Todd

NanoSecond's picture
NanoSecond
Posts: 526
Joined: Oct 2012

I am not sure which version you have.  We store our coconut milk in the refrigerator with no problems.  It lasts about as long as a carton of regular milk in the 'frig used to.  But it's my wife who is fond of drinking it. I only drink Almond milk.

For our coffe we use "So Delicious" coconut milk cremer - which apparently does contain some thickening agent in it.  It does not separate and does not require shaking.

 

 

Djinnie's picture
Djinnie
Posts: 769
Joined: Apr 2013

This may sound strange but my doctor has recommended drinking red wine in moderation, it is full of antioxidants.  Now I know living in France there is not a single French man who would consider drinking wine anything other than good for you. However when it comes from your health advisor how can I ignore it. 

All the best

Djinnie

Texas_wedge's picture
Texas_wedge
Posts: 2807
Joined: Nov 2011

Djinnie, this has been fairly standard medical advice for many years.

Djinnie's picture
Djinnie
Posts: 769
Joined: Apr 2013

I must say that red wine has always been my favourite tipple. It is good to know I can now claim I am under doctors orders. In moderation of course.

Djinnie

MDCinSC's picture
MDCinSC
Posts: 574
Joined: Feb 2013

Its a full bodied Cabernet all around! One glass before retiring!

 

Djinnie's picture
Djinnie
Posts: 769
Joined: Apr 2013

Sounds good to me ...always gives me a good nights sleep

 

Djinnie

MeMeJoy
Posts: 68
Joined: Apr 2013

I asked my doc about dietary restrictions having only one kidney and he gave me this long spiel about eating more naturally (like lean meat and fruits and nuts and berries and stuff) so I straight up asked if I could still drink wine (this girl loves her pinot noir) and he said it’s fine in moderation, 1-2 glasses p/week. But he never said how big a glass….Innocent

 

 The thing I’m going to miss the most is my sweet tea. I know I drink too much and cutting back would be good… but hey, I’m from the south, what are we without our sweet tea? lol

I gave up soda a few years ago, it was hard at first but honestly now I don't miss it. And when I do accidently have some I think it tastes awful.

 

Djinnie's picture
Djinnie
Posts: 769
Joined: Apr 2013

I know what you mean, I can usually get about half the bottle in my wine glass. I bought them in Texas :) say no more....

 

All the best 

 

Djinnie

MeMeJoy
Posts: 68
Joined: Apr 2013

the bottle IS made of glass... as long as you stay away from plastic bottles and wine in a box Undecided it's all good right? lol

NanoSecond's picture
NanoSecond
Posts: 526
Joined: Oct 2012

I think you meant to write 1-2 glasses of red wine per day.  Preferably at dinner with food (it is never a good idea to drink on an empty stomach - that can cause a rapid spike in insulin levels).

Red wine contains an potent anti-cancer agent called resveratrol.

Resveratrol helps protect the arteries by improving their elasticity, thus inhibiting blood clots. It also lowers blood pressure and is a strong anti-oxidant. Resveratrol is a polyphenol. Polyphenols are said to mimic caloric restriction. That is, they can work to restrict carbohydrate utilization.

 

 "Resveratrol is a polyphenolic compound. Its primary functions include anti-mutagenic, anti-inflammatory, and anti-oxidant activities. Due to its potent anti-oxidative effect, its ability to regulate cell proliferation, and ability to help decrease blood supply to tumor cells, Resveratrol is strongly associated with inhibiting tumor growth while promoting beneficial effects in preventing cardiovascular disease." - Block Center for Integrative Cancer Treatment

 

MeMeJoy
Posts: 68
Joined: Apr 2013

My doc said 1-2 per week - Now ,do I care? Not really. I have long been aware of the positive effects of red wine and fully believe in them. My doctor on the other hand seems to have his own opinions about limiting alcohol consumption in any form ( he will also talk to you at length about the 'American' diet and its role in cancer) , which I respectfully disagree with...Wink I am perfectly fine with differing opinions, at least he is honest about his beliefs, that is all I ask.

NanoSecond's picture
NanoSecond
Posts: 526
Joined: Oct 2012

What are your reasons for respectfully disagreeing with your onc about the "American" diet's role in cancer?

MeMeJoy
Posts: 68
Joined: Apr 2013

I didn’t mean that I necessarily disagree with him on the diet issue (I don't know if I do or not), more so on the only having 1-2 glasses of wine per week.

However:

Honestly, I feel that as a whole, we (society/science) are just now starting to scratch the surface of understanding cancer. Do diet and other environmental factors play into the body’s ability to fight cancer, sure probably so- makes sense to me. Do they cause cancer, maybe . That said, I don’t know, I’m not a doctor and have no credentials what-so-ever that would qualify me to have a valid opinion. However, it’s my understanding (through very limited research mind you) that documented cases of possible cancer date back as far as the ancient Egyptians, and they certainly didn’t eat today’s typical “American” diet… Even if you look to more recent history, diet and environment has changed drastically over the last 100 years. Are there more cases of cancer today than before or are there simply better/more diagnostic techniques available to more people, who are also living longer?

Now, I’m not saying that there isn’t or can’t be a correlation between certain behaviors and types of cancer. Smokers have a higher chance of getting lung cancer, that makes sense. But not all smokers get lung cancer, so it’s not a direct result. Something else must be at play. Something causes the cells to crazy.

Perhaps all that is required is a perfect storm of genetics, environment, behavior, and plain old luck of the draw?

Again, I have no reason or research or anything to back up what I said, just my own random thoughts on the matter. And I reserve the right to change my mind at any time lol Innocent Until then, I’m still going to eat a Whopper Jr. and have a glass of wine if and when I so desire Laughing

 

NanoSecond's picture
NanoSecond
Posts: 526
Joined: Oct 2012

Thank you for your thoughts.  I am pleased you made that distinction.  Just as cancer is not one solitary disease - there is not one "cause" for it occuring in the first place.  However, aside from those cancers that are known to be hereditary, there should be no doubt that environmental factors are at the root of the problem.  And that includes whatever we eat or breathe.

Yes indeed, there is evidence of cancer to be found in mumified remains that are thousands of years old. However, what has changed most recently is the frequency of its occurance.  There are quite a few studies regarding isolated (i.e. non-westernized) societies that showed they had little or no occurance of cancer at all.  For example, Dr. Albert Schweitzer wrote in 1957: "On my arrival in Gabon, in 1913, I was astonished to encounter no cases of cancer..."

In 1915, Dr. Frederick L. Hoffman wrote an 826-page volume, The Mortality from Cancer Throughout the World. Under 'Cancer among Primitive Races' Hoffman reported that: "The rarity of cancer among native races suggests that the disease is primarily induced by the conditions and methods of living which typify our modern civilization... cancer is exceptionally rare among the primitive peoples..."

Anyway, this is an immense topic for research.  For more "food for thought" while sipping on your red wine, there is this:

http://ajcn.nutrition.org/content/81/2/341.full

MDCinSC's picture
MDCinSC
Posts: 574
Joined: Feb 2013

I'll join you on this kind of research!  As you point out, the incidence of cancer is at near monumental proportions compared to even when I was young.

Prima facie reasoning tells me that it is our so-called "modern" lifestyle of better living through chemistry and manipulation of our food sources as well as the ever increasing incidence of solvents and sources of radiation in our increasingly "convenient" mode of existence.

I say again, this is just my knee jerk observation, but it is hard to ignore.

That'll be two cents please! Laughing

Michael

NanoSecond's picture
NanoSecond
Posts: 526
Joined: Oct 2012

...I am hoping that my health insurance can cover your bill.  :)

donna_lee's picture
donna_lee
Posts: 400
Joined: Feb 2009

At my point in life, ye gads-70-, I've learned that "bubbles in/bubbles out".  Soda causes gas, and especially diet sodas.

I'm also on blood pressure meds with only one kidney, so excess sodium is not recommended.  And a couple of other meds come with warning to avoid alcohol.  I save up being a good girl and enjoy a margarita or a single malt scotch once or twice a year.  And 2 cups of coffee in the morning is my limit, or I'll be awake until the wee hours.

So I guess you're back to square 1.  If you really have questions you need answered, check with your doctor.

Donna

MeMeJoy
Posts: 68
Joined: Apr 2013

Thanks for sharing! I haven’t read all of that yet, but did skim quite a bit. Definitely a good read!! And much’ food’ for thought! hehe

Also, I hope I didn’t offend you or anyone with any of my comments! In hindsight I see how my comments may have come off as argumentative. I’m just quite the skeptic of… well just about  everything  I guess lol You know the saying. “it’s like arguing with a brick wall” , well my mom used to say I’d argue with a brick wall just to do it lol

Thanks again for the info and all of the other info you share on this site! It really is fabulous!

Subscribe with RSS
About Cancer Society

The content on this site is for informational purposes only. It is not a substitute for professional medical advice. Do not use this information to diagnose or treat a health problem or disease without consulting with a qualified healthcare provider. Please consult your healthcare provider with any questions or concerns you may have regarding your condition. Use of this online service is subject to the disclaimer and the terms and conditions.

Copyright 2000-2014 © Cancer Survivors Network