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All foods taste BAD

Posts: 3
Joined: Sep 2011

Five days ago I had my first treatment of taxotere and cytoxan, now everything taste bad. I am having to force food down. Will this pass or continue through the remainder of my treatments? Even water is bad.

carkris's picture
Posts: 4554
Joined: Aug 2009

for me food did not taste bad per se, I just had no desire to eat. So i would have to remind myself to eat. I also had digestive issues which made me not want eat as well. There is nothing you like? some people have said they like things with stronger flavors, spicy. some use plastic utensils to help the metalic taste. I hope other people will give some suggestions.
Try to make yourself eat, your potassium will get messed up and you will feel weak. Good nutrition is important especially now. Perhaps you can get a nutrition consult at your hospital

jessiesmom1's picture
Posts: 874
Joined: Jun 2010

I had 4 rounds of A/C and 12 rounds of Taxotere. During the Taxotere rounds eventually ALL food tasted bad AND I lost the desire to eat entirely. Like you, even drinking water was unpleasant. At first, it seemed like everything tasted like paste. Eventually I just stopped eating. I tried drinking Boost (given to me by the oncologist's office) but I just couldn't get it down. The doctor said not eating wasn't ideal but it wouldn't kill me either. He said I needed to make an effort to hydrate though. I kept a water bottle on my nightstand and just drank on a schedule regardless of whether I wanted to or not. I also sucked on/ate fruit bar popsicles for hydration and possibly some nutrition. I had to have IV fluids twice but I did not miss any of the 12 rounds of chemo. As a bonus of sorts I lost 40 pounds. There is something to be said for being overweight to start with. I was able to start eating and drinking more or less regularly about 3 weeks after my last Taxotere infusion. My last chemo was over a year ago. I have since gained back 25 pounds :( but am otherwise feeling pretty good.

Good luck to you.


debi.18's picture
Posts: 850
Joined: Jun 2011

I've had 5 treatments of taxol and seems most of my taste buds just aren't there. I can taste a few things but most food has no taste at all. I can taste sugar and salt, but other than that it's pretty boring to eat. Guess it's a good thing I love sweets!

I've heard that it goes away after treatment. I just think of it as my "new diet"~

epark's picture
Posts: 339
Joined: Aug 2011

and i have no taste buds everything taste bad...even water..i eat because i have too....the SE in general sucks all together....


carkris's picture
Posts: 4554
Joined: Aug 2009

I had AC and taxol i lost 80 pounds!

Ritzy's picture
Posts: 4382
Joined: Aug 2009

I'm so sorry. I hope that it gets better for you so you can eat.

Sue :)

mamolady's picture
Posts: 796
Joined: May 2011

Depending on how often you have treatments, you may be able to eat more just before your next treatment. I was given steroids with the treatment so I actually gained weight.... :(
You may want to eat comfort foods that are easy for you to eat. Or try foods you wouldn't normally eat. They may taste ok now. Protein drinks may also help you get some calories and they help your cells regenerate too.


DianeBC's picture
Posts: 3886
Joined: Jun 2009

Can you get milk shakes down or have you tried juicing or something? Praying it will get easier for you to eat.

Hugs, Diane

Gabe N Abby Mom's picture
Gabe N Abby Mom
Posts: 2415
Joined: Sep 2010

silly double post...

Gabe N Abby Mom's picture
Gabe N Abby Mom
Posts: 2415
Joined: Sep 2010

I had 6 rounds of TAC and the bland foods worked for me..plain noodles, potatoes, plain rice, eggs for protein. With each round it seemed like a slightly different food worked, I ate whatever appealed at the moment. As for getting nutrition, I was told in my chemo class to focus on calories and protein. They also recommended carnation instant breakfast(I think it's called breakfast essentials now), sometimes I would just have that mixed in milk. I also added it to smoothies on good days.

My treatment cycles were 3 weeks apart, and I did find it easier to eat just before each new treatment. Others here recommend plastic utensils.

Try adding a little flavor to the water with some juice, crystal light, anything that might make it better for you. Also, for me, the days just after treatment I had to have my water icy cold...anything less than that seemed to taste worse. I also liked vitamin water, the XXX and energy flavors worked best for me.

I hope some of this helps and that your side effects are minimal.



missrenee's picture
Posts: 2137
Joined: Apr 2010

and almost anything I put into my mouth tasted bad--didn't matter if it was salty, sweet, sour or bland. I lived on Cheerios with skim milk, peanut butter and white bread sandwiches and tomato soup from a can. Those were the most tolerable things--not necessarily what I craved. It was all trial and error. I'd have an idea that I might like to eat something, tried it, and then spit it out. Even ice cream--which I normally love--tasted bad--which is just weird. I had to force down water because even it tasted terrible.

Good luck finding things that will agree with you--just keep trying different things. Since I didn't have any real major side effects, coping with the taste thing was pretty minor for me. I wish you well with your treatments.

Hugs, Renee

LoveBabyJesus's picture
Posts: 1680
Joined: Jan 2011

I had some of that only for the first few days, then it would slowly get better. There were a few things that helped me: lemon, Olive Oil, Sea Salt and Maple syrup. These are some of the ingredients you can add to foods to help get the flavors back. Also purchased this book, which is where I got the information from: http://rebeccakatz.com/books/cancer_fighting_kitchen.html. It helped me very much! It tells you what to do and what not to do for each side effect of chemo. Although this was originated for bc patients, a lot of the information applies for any other type of cancer treatments. It's rich with information about foods during chemo therapy.

Good luck with all your treatments. And hang in there!

Posts: 489
Joined: Dec 2009

I'm on #4 tomorrow of Taxotere and Carboplatin and I can't taste a thing for about 9-10 days after, then gradually things start to taste normal. By the time I'm heading in to my next treatment, BOOM it's time to start all over again. That has been the worst part for me. Feels like a big sock in my mouth all day and nothing penetrates through it. Practically gag on water too, and I'm a huge water drinker, so I've had to go in for fluids also.
It's so hard to shop a head of time, because I never know what might sound good. Like a couple of the other sisters said, I can taste salt, so I over salt everything, and maple syrup too. So weird.....and I do crave & love a Frosty from Wendy's.

I believe though, that this too shall pass! Hang in there....and just keep counting down!!!

Posts: 113
Joined: Jun 2010

The only food I could taste for some reason was McDonalds. So I ate at McDonalds. LOL!! Someone told me that if you eat with plastic spoons and forks that it helps, but I didn't hear about that till I had already finished chemo and radiation. I could also taste Coke, but not Pepsi. It was really weird...

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