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what to eat on day of chemo

Posts: 13
Joined: Jan 2010

I am having my first chemo on Tuesday. Just wondering what is the best food to eat before and after. My chemo drugs are taxotere and cytoxan. Any other advise on how to get threw the first time would be greatly appreciated.

Sher43009's picture
Posts: 602
Joined: Nov 2009

Check out ACS website for a booklet "Nutrition for the Person with Cancer during Treatment A Guide for Patients and Families". It tells you how to prepare your house for having low blood counts and how to be careful around germs. It also tells you what to eat and not to eat for the different side effects to make you feel better.

The best advise I can give is to drink a ton of liquids. Chemo causes dehydration so you have to keep drinking.

Good luck on Tuesday!

TraciInLA's picture
Posts: 1994
Joined: Jul 2009

Also agree with Sher -- "Nutrition for the Person with Cancer During Treatment" is a fantastic resource. I referred to it so often during chemo. It has sections organized by side effect -- given that my side effects changed practically daily (ooh, what side effects do I get to enjoy today?), this was really helpful.

You can find it on the ACS website, or call their 800 number and ask them to send it to you for free.


Eil4186's picture
Posts: 967
Joined: Dec 2007

I found I could have cereal for breakfast. During treatment they provided lunch and I was fine with that but, after that and for the next couple days, I felt best with toast, bananas, jello, pudding and soup. Bland was easier on my stomach. I drank flavored water and gatorade because plain water tasted wierd. The couple times I ate something heavy after a treatment I threw up within the hour.

Mama G
Posts: 763
Joined: Nov 2009

Which means not a whole lot of food and not too spicy. Looking back at the A/C treatments I feel eating before and even during the chemo had no effect on my reaction, maybe because I did eat light. Afterward was the difficult time for food, because nothing tasted very good to me. Apples, bananas, jello, frozen yogurt bars, crackers, and hard boiled eggs got me through the rough days. After chemo they give you enough meds to handle a decent dinner and breakfast the next day. After that you eat whatever you can handle. Several of my friends ate everything and anything with no problem. So you have to find out for yourself.
Let us know how it goes. Good luck and God bless.

TraciInLA's picture
Posts: 1994
Joined: Jul 2009

I did 4 rounds of the same cocktail you're having from August-October last year.

You definitely don't want to do chemo on an empty stomach, so have something light before you go -- toast, yogurt, hot cereal, that kind of thing.

Find out ahead of time if your center offers lunch or any snacks. Centers vary widely -- some centers give you a full box lunch, some offer snacks, some (like mine) have nothing at all. If that's the case with your center, be sure to take light snacks and PLENTY of water and beverages with you -- I brought a cooler with me each time.

My #1 recommendation for after chemo is to go to the grocery store ahead of time, and stock your fridge with single-serving items that are easy on your stomach and give you some protein. There were times on days 3 and 4 that I couldn't stand up long enough to even microwave something, so having things to just grab and take back to the couch were a lifesaver.

The weekend before each round, I stocked my fridge with single-serving sizes of: jell-o, pudding, yogurt, cottage cheese, cheese sticks, applesauce, bananas, and my favorite juices. In my experience, protein is key -- I found I felt SO much better if I could even get one little carton of cottage cheese or a stick of cheese in me.

And of course, as others have said (and my chemo nurse lectured me constantly) -- hydrate, hydrate, hydrate.

Everyone reacts differently, but chemo is doable -- please keep posting with any other questions, and let us know how you do!


BethInAz's picture
Posts: 203
Joined: Jan 2010

Calabria03 - You'll do great! The first treatment, I was so nervous, I didn't feel like eating anything but after the infusion, I went out to a little cafe with my husband and had some hot soup. It was great. On the second treatment, I again enjoyed the hot soup after the infusion. For the third treatment, I got hungry - and it was going over lunch - so I sent my husband to the cafe to get me a sandwich. The last treatment, one of the other gals getting her infusion was visiting with everybody, sharing some sugary sweet treats she'd made. At first I thought she was a nurse but then I noticed she was attached to an IV bag! I did take candy with me to the treatment to give me something good to taste in my mouth - and I also took Vicks to put under my nose so I didn't have to smell the chemo room smell. And drink, drink, drink! Taxotere & cytoxan is tough on the bladder and you want to flush the chemicals out of the system as quickly as possible.
You'll be fine. Let us know how you do.

Jacque101's picture
Posts: 75
Joined: Dec 2009

After checking out what ACS says as was posted above. For the following days when your taste buds don't taste so good. We started trying new receipes, on the bland side, but things we didn't usually have. My mind wasn't set for that great taste of favorite stuff, the things that you would know what they taste like, but rather new things. These new things may not taste good next year but are yummy now. New soups...Corn Clam Chowder, Split Pea Soup and Broccoli Cheese Soup were good. So was the 3 banana splits I ordered in one week. Anything cold was a hit w/ me.

Posts: 79
Joined: Mar 2010

I got a 2 litre bottle of water and made myself drink it all each day till reaction was over. Ate normally, but smaller portions day of treatment. Drank tea made with all milk and honey, and jambajuice the two worst days. Ate a few bananas but will never eat another. Chicken noodle soup the day I started coming out of it. Had those same two drugs. Definitely no walk inthe park, just kept knowing---
you can do this. And I did; so will you. Good luck!

laurissa's picture
Posts: 773
Joined: Sep 2009

Before the appt., I had a fruit and grain bar and a yogurt. Lunch was brought to me by my husband or sister from fast food. My appetite stayed with me, no nausea. I was on the same as you, too. Since chemo has ended, it has messed up my dairy digestion alot. I used to be able to eat anything with no problem, now I have to take Lactaid with each meal and I'm ok. How many rounds do you have to do? I did 6. It will pass for you, too. Good luck.

MyTurnNow's picture
Posts: 2690
Joined: Aug 2009

Welcome, Calabria. I, too, had the same cocktail as you. I had 4 treatments, finished last one 10/15/09. I normally had oatmeal the morning of treatment, just to make sure I had something in my stomach. I always took water with me and some fruit, usually grapes. I had minimal to no side effects from the treatment. I would recommend as others have to make sure to drink plenty of water. Hydration is probably the most important. Take any medications as instructed by your onco and you'll be finished before you realize it. Continue to post and let us know how you are doing. Good luck!!

Posts: 55
Joined: Mar 2010

The day OF, I ate either yogurt or oatmeal for breakfast and took crackers, chips, small candy bars, whatever clanged my chime that day.

One thing though, just because something tastes good to you one day doesn't mean it will the next. At first, Sierra Mist was delish. A month later, looking at it turned my stomach. Your taste will change and you may have a "metal" taste in your mouth. Mine tasted like permanent solution smells. Yucky.

I realize that this sounds crazy, but between treatments, I craved jalapenos. I ate them every day at least twice a day. And I don't mean one. I mean two or three at a meal! I liked them before, but not like that.

Now that it's over, I can take them or leave them.

Christine Louise
Posts: 428
Joined: Feb 2010

I'm starting the same chemo on Tuesday, calabria. The advice on here is so helpful. I was wondering what to prepare for.

My onc warned me against getting constipated, mainly to avoid infections from breaks in the bacteria-laden rectal area. The foods suggested here certainly wouldn't keep me from getting constipated. I'm already fighting to stay regular since my mastectomies. I do take Metamucil-type capsules daily, drink lots of water, eat veggies and grains and try to get in a walk, but some days it's still a problem.

Did anyone find the chemo to be particularly constipating? Any advice?

GrandmaJ's picture
Posts: 209
Joined: Nov 2009

I was on the same "cocktail". Finished last October. I never had constipation, instead had the opposite problem, diarrhea...but just after first treatment.

After chemo, I came across a book called "Eating Well During Chemo...recommendations during and after treatment....Wish I had found it before...

Everyone is different, so no way to know what reactions, if any, you will have, but its very do-able... You will be fine..Good luck and as everyone else said, lots of fluids....


Posts: 2
Joined: Apr 2010

The best advise I can give is to drink a ton of liquids. Chemo causes dehydration so you have to keep drinking.

Posts: 429
Joined: Dec 2009

I had the same cocktail as you and finished October 9, 2009. All the advice given here is spot on! I had alot of digestive problems so if you get the big "D" ask for Lomotil. It's prescription strength Immodium AD. It does the trick (well, sort of but better than IAD).

Also, my chemo nurse said to eat Activia to help eat up any bad bacteria that might leach into your system. I still eat that everyday and also take Acidofulus (sp).

Good luck...you'll be through it before you know it!

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