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Diet for the "New Normal"

ldot123's picture
Posts: 276
Joined: Apr 2008

Hello Semi-Colons,

Hope everyone is doing well! My question for the day has to do with dealing with gastric issues now that I am a year and a bit out from last chemo and surgery. (Stage 3 - took out ascending part of colon plus 6 months chemo) I find that there does seem to be a new normal. My stomach seems to be very gassy in the morning - lots of burps plus occasional very robust flatulence! To top things off, I have an hernia from the surgery which is kind of constantly uncomfortable, not painful per se but I know it is there. I have booked an appointment with a gastro doc and hope he can offer advice. Perhaps a diet change. The surgeon said the ileous valve was taken out during surgery so that might account for something. Anyone else out there have these issues. These may seem minor but if I can solve these problems it would make day to day more enjoyable.

Stay positive out there gang! Cheers, Lance

msccolon's picture
Posts: 1956
Joined: Oct 2004

Lance, glad to hear you are doing so well a year plus out. Speak to a surgeon about having your incisional hernia repaired... they can get to be a problem if the intestines get stuck in them. Mine was repaired when they had to go in a second time to cut out recurrence. It doesn't look pretty, but it sure is better than the hernia! I have a friend that had a large portion of her colon removed due to crohn's, including the ileum. She had lots of problems with gas and diarrhea, etc. A recent visit to a new gastro resulted in some kind of powder to be taken daily and it has greatly improved her problems. Her gastro said removing the ileum makes it hard for the body to process fat and such. Good luck!

claud1951's picture
Posts: 429
Joined: Jun 2007

Hi Lance,

I, too, was Stage 3 and ascending colon removed (6 mos chemo). Yes. I do have gas, alot. (I always was but even more with the colon removed). I just know when I juice and eat nuts, grains I know to stay home for about an hour after I drink it or eat it because it goes through me in that amount of time.

Some things are worse than others but all the above are good for you. I guess I just feel I have to live with it (and that's okay with me). Since I like to juice and eat nuts/grains. For me, don't think there is anything I can do but to be gassy! Plus my bowels are usually loose.

I do know if I dont' drink enough water (through the day) my bowels are harder (and I don't like that).

Afraid I don't have an answer for you (other than what happens with me).

Hope you get some answers. And yes...very positive indeed!

My best to you

Posts: 529
Joined: Nov 2007

As each day goes by things become more normal. However, I know what you mean. I was stage IIIa, chemo, rads etc. 20 cm of colon gone. I am now a year plus out of treatment. Gassey yes - I have just decided, oh well, and try to remove myself from any company when it strikes, if I can't, I didn't know them anyway or they weren't really friends. Bowel issues continue to improve as I learn how various foods work and when to use immodium and when to just not worry about it.

The only food group, I really have probems with, are fatty foods, so I just stay away from them, eat them in moderation if I really want them, and keep the immodium close by.

This took me awhile. I was diagnosed January 2007 - spicy food doesn't bother me much, and I have mastered lettuce - so long as I don't eat to much. I find moderation to be a key.

Best of luck,


ldot123's picture
Posts: 276
Joined: Apr 2008

Thanks for the feedback everyone. It seems there are folks out there with similar gastro issues. Once I talk to the gastro doc I will report back.

Cheers, Lance

Hatshepsut's picture
Posts: 340
Joined: Nov 2006

Hi Lance.

My husband has had two colon resections and he, too, has problems with intestinal gas. (We also follow a pretty rigorous vegan diet with lots of fiber. My husband has heart issues in addition to colon cancer issues and the diet is meant to address both.)

I read about a product, Devrom, that is used by people who have had gastric bypass surgery, colostomies, etc. Their website address is http://www.devrom.com/

Devrom is described as an "internal deodorant." It doesn't get rid of (or reduce) the gas but it does seem, at least in my husband's situation, to make it less obvious by deodorizing it. We tried (and still do use) Beano but find its usefulness marginal.

You might want to look up the product on the Internet and perhaps discuss it with your doctor.


KathiM's picture
Posts: 8077
Joined: Aug 2005

I lost the other end of colon...rectum and sig colon, but I have adopted an IBS diet of sorts, and it seems to work well.

One tip, I slooooooowly added back foods, sort of like you do with a baby, one at a time to see the reaction. If there was a problem, I put that food aside for awhile. Now, the only food I REALLY cannot tolerate is popcorn (sigh, and I love it....lol). Oh well, a small price to pay, I suppose...

Also, I stay well hydrated...seems to help keep things flowing...

Hugs, Kathi

kimby's picture
Posts: 804
Joined: Oct 2007

Yes, I also have gas issues. I lost about half of my small intestine and a couple of feet of sigmoid colon and my gas isn't just annoying, it is painful. I have found that acidopholis (probiotics) help tremendously. Try to find ones that have been (and require) refrigerated. Also, if I keep to a low residual diet it makes a huge difference in gas. The problem with that is that I love raw veggies/salad/fruit, and prefer a high fiber diet. (Yes, I always have - and still have stage IV cc at 44yr old). I also feel that low residual isn't as healthy overall so I adjust for times when I'll be in social situations for long stretches. I work with the public and spend long hours in my car, so things can get tricky.

Also, I am having problems with diarrhea from the chemo and the meds cause gas. I'm on Lomotil, Immodium, Pepto Bismal and Sandostatin shots. That is medication overload so I suppose the gas it causes is better than the alternative!

It will require some experimenting on your part, but you will find what works best for you. Good luck!


Buzzard's picture
Posts: 3073
Joined: Aug 2008

I was/am in the situation in which my spincter muscle(inner) rectum , and part of my colon was taken and I have a sigmoid ostomy in which is permanent. I do have a lot of gas issues but the ostomy bags I have are equipped with a carbon vent so the smell issue is not there but the noise is and it has already happened before I can cover it with my hand or simply be embarrassed about it.
I decided that the noise and embarrassment that goes along with it is a lot better than the alternative. I simply try to muffle it when I can and if it slips out then I simply tell them I am a cancer survivor and have an ostomy that I just washed and I can't do a thing with it. I then smile and go on my way. I am not ashamed or embarrassed anymore about my surviving this disease, nor will I ever be.
I am also eating everything that I did before, its mostly Southern cooking and everyone knows what thats all about but thats how I was raised and I love it all so if ya see someone in Walmart or catch someone in an elevator and they seem awful gassy, its probably me...rotflol.......I have acquired a new lease on life since my diagnosis. Im not rude to people at all, I do everything I can to make people comfortable with my disease, I just enjoy life a little different than before.......

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