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An expected bump in the road

Editgrl
Editgrl Member Posts: 903

Well, my week went all to hell.  Late Tuesday night I woke up with horrible pains in my abdomen.  At first I thought it was just a gas pain, though the worst have them have subsided in the past week.  Within 10 minutes, I knew it was something worse.  So, off to the ER.  An ultrasound and a CT scan showed the sphincter between my stomach and duodenum spasmed shut and everything in my stomach was backing up.  I was in agonizing pain and vomiting even with pain meds and something to keep me from vomiting.  I ended up having a nasogastric tube put in and was hooked up to suction for a couple of days.  So... no food for two days until this morning.  Great.  Now I've lost more weight again, not to mention getting almost no sleep because hey, the hospital is no place to get a good night's sleep.  Not the way I wanted this week to go.  And jeez, I have never had anything like this.  Doc says it was not related to surgery. Now everyone's concerned because of weight loss.  I was below 90 lbs. yesterday.  Guess I will be adding nutritional supplements/shakes to my diet immediately.  Both meals at the hospital this morning included additional supplements.  Anyone have any favorites?

Comments

  • Lou Ann M
    Lou Ann M Member Posts: 996
    So so sorry to hear

    Those tubes are the most uncomfortable thing I have ever had!

    Although it may sound kind of silly, I used Slim-Fast as a supplement to the regular meals.  It has a good amount of protein and I liked the taste.  I tried a clear Ensure, but I didn't really like the taste.  I was given a booklet before my first chemo that had a variety of diet ideas for differtent eventualities .  For weight gain they suggested adding butter and cream to meals, and food rich in calories.

    i am hoping things get better for you.  Hugs and prayers, Lou Ann

  • Cucu me
    Cucu me Member Posts: 213
    Editgrl you'll get better

    Few days after my surgery I went to ER too.Then stayed 6more days in the hospital for bowel obstruction.
    I did not eat, I could not sleep, but later I got better.

    Thinking of you. Just eat good food when you can.

  • pam0422
    pam0422 Member Posts: 25
    Supplements

    I am so very very sorry you had to go through that on top of everything else your body has been through lately. Hands down Carnation Instant Breakfast is the best tasting supplement and comparable in nutrients to Boost. I throw it in a blender with frozen yogurt, milk and some fruit. Vanilla instant breakfast heated with a chai teabag infused is wonderfully comforting. Ovaltine adds nutrients and vitamins and is good hot or cold. Don't forget good ole Cream of Wheat with milk and sugar added. I think it's important mentally not to feel like your whole life has become a medical plan; so I make creme brulee, pies and puddings with an envelope of dry instant breakfast mixed in with the milk in the recipe to serve as supplemental snacks. If you like gelatin, it is a good source of protein and lends itself to being served with cottage cheese,fruit and whipped cream to increase the calories (or here in the south, made into a good jello salad with a fluorescent color and ingredients thrown in that shouldn't swim together even in a sea of jello). I will be thinking of you. - Pam

  • NoTimeForCancer
    NoTimeForCancer Member Posts: 2,928 **
    Editgrl, I am so sorry to

    Editgrl, I am so sorry to hear this!  Out of all this craziness at least it is good to know that this 'bump' is not related to the cancer.  I am not a dietician, and maybe there is one you can talk to for help, but I would think an increase in calories is in order. 

    I did talk to one who specializes in helping patients with cancer, the concern then was getting enough protein to keep the blood counts up for treatment, but I will pass along a tip that she told me.  Most protien shakes on the market have soy protien isolates as the main ingredient.  It is highly processed soy, and for anyone trying to avoid highly processed foods it is not a good idea.  Also, she told me it was highly controversial, but I found an article on it when I was sitting in the waiting room for a radiation dose, that the body converts soy to estrogen, and hormone treatments are not always recommended for women with these types of agressive cancers.

    I saved the article on my desktop and hope the image below shows:

     

  • TeddyandBears_Mom
    TeddyandBears_Mom Member Posts: 1,801 **
    Chris!

    Darn it! Sooooo sorry to hear this. I hope you are feeling better today.

    And....  by  now you know my favorite....  ICE CREAM!

    Are they going to delay the start of your chemo?  Seems like another week of healing may help?

    I'm sending you lots of positive energy and love from Florida.

    Take Care,

    Cindi

  • Editgrl
    Editgrl Member Posts: 903
    Thanks for all your suggestions

    My chemo will not be startilng for at least a week, as I definitely have to have the chemo class before I start and that's not until Thursday.  They asked if I had a preferred day for my chemo and I told them not Friday, so it won't start for at least a week. That means I have some time, though my port is still going in on Monday. In the meantime, I am going back to my "old" diet with some minor changes, as I think my original diet was pretty darn good from my research.  I think trying to make the change to mostly vegetarian was not helpful to me.  Going back to chicken (now pastured raised and organic), more fish and adding more vegetables to that mix. I am going to eat more, smaller meals and add a couple of nutritional drinks every day.  I had Boost Breeze in the hospital, but it is so dang sweet it makes my teeth ache so it's out of the question for every day use.

    I'll take a look at the others you have all suggested.  NoTimeforCancer, I have been looking at the soy proteins in some of these.  Thanks for the article. I've also found an organic shake, Orgain, that's available on Amazon and Costco.  Sounds pretty good, and a Costco is close by, though it's not clear whether it is actually carried in the stores. Pam, I've had some of those fluorescent jello concoctions in my life.  I had an aunt who specialized in them at every family diinner!

    I did sleep last night, though I have to tell you, a part of me was scared to go to sleep after waking up the other night with that horrible pain.  But I did get a good 7 hours sleep, so that's good.  Getting ready for a light breakfast with a box of leftover Breeze from the hospital. Yum!

  • TeddyandBears_Mom
    TeddyandBears_Mom Member Posts: 1,801 **
    Editgrl said:

    Thanks for all your suggestions

    My chemo will not be startilng for at least a week, as I definitely have to have the chemo class before I start and that's not until Thursday.  They asked if I had a preferred day for my chemo and I told them not Friday, so it won't start for at least a week. That means I have some time, though my port is still going in on Monday. In the meantime, I am going back to my "old" diet with some minor changes, as I think my original diet was pretty darn good from my research.  I think trying to make the change to mostly vegetarian was not helpful to me.  Going back to chicken (now pastured raised and organic), more fish and adding more vegetables to that mix. I am going to eat more, smaller meals and add a couple of nutritional drinks every day.  I had Boost Breeze in the hospital, but it is so dang sweet it makes my teeth ache so it's out of the question for every day use.

    I'll take a look at the others you have all suggested.  NoTimeforCancer, I have been looking at the soy proteins in some of these.  Thanks for the article. I've also found an organic shake, Orgain, that's available on Amazon and Costco.  Sounds pretty good, and a Costco is close by, though it's not clear whether it is actually carried in the stores. Pam, I've had some of those fluorescent jello concoctions in my life.  I had an aunt who specialized in them at every family diinner!

    I did sleep last night, though I have to tell you, a part of me was scared to go to sleep after waking up the other night with that horrible pain.  But I did get a good 7 hours sleep, so that's good.  Getting ready for a light breakfast with a box of leftover Breeze from the hospital. Yum!

    Diet

    Chris, that sounds very wise. Especially since you were so darn healthy with your old diet.

    I get my port in on Monday as well. And, then I start chemo on Thursday. My "port doctor" told me I would still be sore for that first infusion but felt I could handle it.

    Glad you are back home. There just isn't a better place to get well. :-)

  • AWK
    AWK Member Posts: 364
    Ugh, these unexpected turns!

    I am so sorry you went through that.  You are an incredibly strong woman.  I am on a weight gain diet per my doctor as I seem to lose about four pounds per treatment plus what I lost prior to, and after my surgery in July.  I only eat organic foods as much as possible as I have been told that any form of hormones for me are like throwing gas on a fire.  Lots of chicken in our diet, I eat red meat on occasion and plenty of fish.  Potatoes, smoothies (made with low fat vanilla yogurt, coconut water, flash frozen organic berries, splash of oj and banana), I tend to graze.  Or at least try to.  My appetite is an issue these days.  My doctor now has me on an eat whatever sounds good diet - ice cream!  In terms of vegetables they have to be well cooked. Everything g is pasteurized, processed or preserved.  No salads, okay I sneak some, no sushi.  The issue is that my immune system is so compromised right now - they want to control as much as possible any exposure to bacteria through foods.  No soft cheeses.  i am craving a salad like never before but with my transfusion and cell counts it just isn't a great idea.  Once the counts are back on track I am all over that!

    My husband just left for the grocery store and asked which kind of ice cream?  I think he is enjoying this more than I am!  Sending hugs and meeping you in my prayers.  Anne

  • Editgrl
    Editgrl Member Posts: 903
    AWK said:

    Ugh, these unexpected turns!

    I am so sorry you went through that.  You are an incredibly strong woman.  I am on a weight gain diet per my doctor as I seem to lose about four pounds per treatment plus what I lost prior to, and after my surgery in July.  I only eat organic foods as much as possible as I have been told that any form of hormones for me are like throwing gas on a fire.  Lots of chicken in our diet, I eat red meat on occasion and plenty of fish.  Potatoes, smoothies (made with low fat vanilla yogurt, coconut water, flash frozen organic berries, splash of oj and banana), I tend to graze.  Or at least try to.  My appetite is an issue these days.  My doctor now has me on an eat whatever sounds good diet - ice cream!  In terms of vegetables they have to be well cooked. Everything g is pasteurized, processed or preserved.  No salads, okay I sneak some, no sushi.  The issue is that my immune system is so compromised right now - they want to control as much as possible any exposure to bacteria through foods.  No soft cheeses.  i am craving a salad like never before but with my transfusion and cell counts it just isn't a great idea.  Once the counts are back on track I am all over that!

    My husband just left for the grocery store and asked which kind of ice cream?  I think he is enjoying this more than I am!  Sending hugs and meeping you in my prayers.  Anne

    Ice cream!

    I had really started into making my own ice cream last summer, and it's so yummy, especially knowing that I am using organic fruit and can eliminate any sugar if I want to.  I even made some using almond milk instead of dairy milk.  I eat a lot of chicken, too.  At one time I said I was surprised I didn't have feathers growing under my arms instead of hair.

    The no raw vegetables thing could be horrid for me.  I love salads, and baby carrots are my go to snack.  But I will do whatever I have to.  I hadn't thought of using coconut milk in smoothies, but that's a great idea and I have laid in a store for hydrating purposes.

    I read Anti-Cancer and realized that most of what he suggested I have already been doing, it's just a matter of re-arranging some of the proportions slightly.  All of the suggestions from everyone here have given me a lot of great information.  It remains to be seen how this diet pans out, but again, I'm just trying to get myself in as good a shape as possible going in.

    Here's hoping your appetite picks up, Anne.  And props to your grocery boy to keeping you well-stocked!

  • Abbycat2
    Abbycat2 Member Posts: 644
    Editgrl said:

    Ice cream!

    I had really started into making my own ice cream last summer, and it's so yummy, especially knowing that I am using organic fruit and can eliminate any sugar if I want to.  I even made some using almond milk instead of dairy milk.  I eat a lot of chicken, too.  At one time I said I was surprised I didn't have feathers growing under my arms instead of hair.

    The no raw vegetables thing could be horrid for me.  I love salads, and baby carrots are my go to snack.  But I will do whatever I have to.  I hadn't thought of using coconut milk in smoothies, but that's a great idea and I have laid in a store for hydrating purposes.

    I read Anti-Cancer and realized that most of what he suggested I have already been doing, it's just a matter of re-arranging some of the proportions slightly.  All of the suggestions from everyone here have given me a lot of great information.  It remains to be seen how this diet pans out, but again, I'm just trying to get myself in as good a shape as possible going in.

    Here's hoping your appetite picks up, Anne.  And props to your grocery boy to keeping you well-stocked!

    Anne and Chris, thinking about you,

    Try to bulk up some if you can. I did not anticipate losing ten pounds while going through 6 rounds of chemo, but I did. Being underweight is no way to fight this beast. Frailty is a side effect of cancer so going into Tx frail already is a bad idea. 

    Praying that you both feel better and thrive.

    Warm Wishes,

    Cathy

  • molimoli
    molimoli Member Posts: 514
    AAH! the pets sounds like persons,just with more understanding

    To all of you ladies going through these unfameliar tunnels with all it's twist,turns and troubling sceneries, for you I am praying.

    This is all very frightening but I am grateful for the heads up though the tunnel rides are so very different for each of us it still doesn't stop us all from feeling that we are not at all in control of the steering wheels as our lives take a new  turn and begin writing a new page. On  my and your page I pray that in a little while in bold letters it will be written  Cancer Sufferer = Cancer Warrior = Cancer Survivor . For me and you all I am praying. Nuff love

  • Editgrl
    Editgrl Member Posts: 903
    Abbycat2 said:

    Anne and Chris, thinking about you,

    Try to bulk up some if you can. I did not anticipate losing ten pounds while going through 6 rounds of chemo, but I did. Being underweight is no way to fight this beast. Frailty is a side effect of cancer so going into Tx frail already is a bad idea. 

    Praying that you both feel better and thrive.

    Warm Wishes,

    Cathy

    Food diary

    I agree, Cathy, and I'll see how much I can gain.  My life is now eating, walking, preparing to eat.

    I am also now doing something I have never done in my life.  Keeping a food diary, keeping track of calories and grams of protein.  And already, I can see that attempting the switch to more vegetarian was not a good thing for me.  I ate the right things, I just needed to eat a lot more of them. However, the Orgain supplement I found is tasty and will now become part of my daily diet.  Back to fish and organic chicken, just adding more vegetables, also organic.  In fact, just about everything is organic now. Eating smaller, more frequent meals  so as to not irritate my recovering tummy, but that's probably a good habit to get into anyway.  Quinoa is my newest friend, providing both calories and protein.  And I guess I'll have to buy a scale, something I don't know that I've ever had for myself my entire adult life.  Let's see what I can get done in a week or so. (And I might get into that ice cream!)

    C'mon, Anne, we can do this!

  • Diya
    Diya Member Posts: 93
    Protein powder

    Dear edit girl,

    i am sorry to hear about your unexpected bump! I do hope from here on its a smoother ride to recovery for you. You have the most positive attitude I have ever seen in anyone! Please keep it going as it is so important for recovery. You are an inspiration to everyone else as well.

    Regarding protein powder try Raw protein from garden Of life. I got this one for my mum and found it very helpful. It is the most natural without any nasties.

    http://www.gardenoflife.com/Products-for-Life/Foundational-Nutrition/RAW-Protein.aspx

     

  • Diya
    Diya Member Posts: 93
    Diya said:

    Protein powder

    Dear edit girl,

    i am sorry to hear about your unexpected bump! I do hope from here on its a smoother ride to recovery for you. You have the most positive attitude I have ever seen in anyone! Please keep it going as it is so important for recovery. You are an inspiration to everyone else as well.

    Regarding protein powder try Raw protein from garden Of life. I got this one for my mum and found it very helpful. It is the most natural without any nasties.

    http://www.gardenoflife.com/Products-for-Life/Foundational-Nutrition/RAW-Protein.aspx

     

    Avocado

    i would also suggest eating lot of avocados is great for gaining weight and it gives you the healthy fats in the body.

  • Editgrl
    Editgrl Member Posts: 903
    Diya said:

    Avocado

    i would also suggest eating lot of avocados is great for gaining weight and it gives you the healthy fats in the body.

    Avocados

    Yes, there are two avocados on my kitchen table just waiting to be used.  Gonna try them in some smoothies.  I actually made avocado/coconut ice cream earlier this year that was yummy, and fairly healthy (for ice cream.)

  • AWK
    AWK Member Posts: 364
    Editgrl said:

    Avocados

    Yes, there are two avocados on my kitchen table just waiting to be used.  Gonna try them in some smoothies.  I actually made avocado/coconut ice cream earlier this year that was yummy, and fairly healthy (for ice cream.)

    I forgot about avocados! Any ideas for dealing with anemia?

    My doctors office called and added more red meat, almonds, apples, peanut butter to my eat list to boost iron and fats.  Any other ideas ladies?  I am moderately anemic now, all of my other counts are moving up after last week's transfusion.  Between red meat and ice cream he is becoming my favorite doctor very quickly.  (Although I don't really eat much red meat.)  I am probably looking at an iron transfusion and hoping it won't affect my treatment schedule.

    Chris - your ice cream sounds yummy!  Anne

  • Editgrl
    Editgrl Member Posts: 903
    AWK said:

    I forgot about avocados! Any ideas for dealing with anemia?

    My doctors office called and added more red meat, almonds, apples, peanut butter to my eat list to boost iron and fats.  Any other ideas ladies?  I am moderately anemic now, all of my other counts are moving up after last week's transfusion.  Between red meat and ice cream he is becoming my favorite doctor very quickly.  (Although I don't really eat much red meat.)  I am probably looking at an iron transfusion and hoping it won't affect my treatment schedule.

    Chris - your ice cream sounds yummy!  Anne

    Interesting about anemia

    My hemoglobin is on the low side of normal, though my doc doesn't seem too concerned, but I am trying to boost that as well.  I am staying away from the red meat, as that was part of my dinner the night of what I am calling my "colic."  Maybe it was coincidental, but I am staying away from that for now.

    I like almond butter better than peanut butter, but either one is a staple on whole grain toast for breakfast. Quinoa is good for iron plus calories, also dried apricots and the old standby, raisins for iron.  Spinach, chard and beans.  Hadn't thought about apples, but sounds good to me!  Time for lunch...

  • pam0422
    pam0422 Member Posts: 25
    AWK said:

    I forgot about avocados! Any ideas for dealing with anemia?

    My doctors office called and added more red meat, almonds, apples, peanut butter to my eat list to boost iron and fats.  Any other ideas ladies?  I am moderately anemic now, all of my other counts are moving up after last week's transfusion.  Between red meat and ice cream he is becoming my favorite doctor very quickly.  (Although I don't really eat much red meat.)  I am probably looking at an iron transfusion and hoping it won't affect my treatment schedule.

    Chris - your ice cream sounds yummy!  Anne

    Anemia

    Anne - Blackstrap Molasses are high in iron and can easily be stirred into most beverages and food. 1 tbsp of Blackstrap Molasses has 3.5mg of Iron which is approx 19% of daily requirement. Cooking foods in an iron skillet actually does increase iron content. See following:

    Researchers have found that cooking in an iron skillet greatly increases the iron content of many foods. Acidic foods that have a higher moisture content, such as applesauce and spaghetti sauce, absorb the most iron. For example, one study published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Associationfound that the iron content in 100 grams of spaghetti sauce jumped from 0.6 mg to 5.7 mg after being cooked in a cast iron pot. Other factors that boost the iron content of foods include longer cooking time, frequent stirring, and using a newer iron skillet.

  • AWK
    AWK Member Posts: 364
    pam0422 said:

    Anemia

    Anne - Blackstrap Molasses are high in iron and can easily be stirred into most beverages and food. 1 tbsp of Blackstrap Molasses has 3.5mg of Iron which is approx 19% of daily requirement. Cooking foods in an iron skillet actually does increase iron content. See following:

    Researchers have found that cooking in an iron skillet greatly increases the iron content of many foods. Acidic foods that have a higher moisture content, such as applesauce and spaghetti sauce, absorb the most iron. For example, one study published in the Journal of the American Dietetic Associationfound that the iron content in 100 grams of spaghetti sauce jumped from 0.6 mg to 5.7 mg after being cooked in a cast iron pot. Other factors that boost the iron content of foods include longer cooking time, frequent stirring, and using a newer iron skillet.

    Thanks!

    And we have a cast iron skillet in our camping gear!  I learned watermelon is another good source.  Here is hoping things stay on track!

  • pinky104
    pinky104 Member Posts: 574
    AWK said:

    I forgot about avocados! Any ideas for dealing with anemia?

    My doctors office called and added more red meat, almonds, apples, peanut butter to my eat list to boost iron and fats.  Any other ideas ladies?  I am moderately anemic now, all of my other counts are moving up after last week's transfusion.  Between red meat and ice cream he is becoming my favorite doctor very quickly.  (Although I don't really eat much red meat.)  I am probably looking at an iron transfusion and hoping it won't affect my treatment schedule.

    Chris - your ice cream sounds yummy!  Anne

    Iron

    I got a blood transfusion myself, and four months later, I was having blood taken out of me because I found out that I have hemochromatosis (not the common form, but one where a person sometimes gets an iron overload and sometimes is okay).  It's a genetic thing, and I don't have the two genes that cause the normal form of it.  I have one messed up gene of another type.   Anyway, what I learned was that my ferritin (iron) level was at 962 when it shouldn't have been above 150.  In reading up on it, I learned that vitamin C helps the body store iron.  I had been taking large doses of vitamin C every day for about 20 years because I thought that with its being an antioxidant, it would protect me from diseases like cancer.  Wrong!!!  Having hemochromatosis can actually cause some cancers, but I don't know if uterine is one of them or not.  I've never read anything to indicate that it is.  I had to have an MRI back when I had my genetic testing to see if I had an iron overload in my abdominal organs, but none was found.  My uterus had already been removed months before I found I had hemochromatosis, so I don't know if it was built up there or not.

    Anyway, you could try adding some vitamin C to your diet to see if that helps.  My oncologist made it sound like my chemo-induced anemia is different from iron-deficiency anemia, though, which I actually had when I was ten years old.  I had been eating nothing but peanut butter sandwiches for 2 weeks when I came down with that.  I was sicker then than I ever was with my cancer.  The lab tech told my doctor that my blood actually was white when they looked at it under the microscope.  I find it ironic (no pun intended) that I had an iron overload in my 60's from hemochromatosis, but my body wasn't storing extra iron when I was 10.  But then I guess I would have had to eat it to be able to store it. 

       

  • Cucu me
    Cucu me Member Posts: 213
    pinky104 said:

    Iron

    I got a blood transfusion myself, and four months later, I was having blood taken out of me because I found out that I have hemochromatosis (not the common form, but one where a person sometimes gets an iron overload and sometimes is okay).  It's a genetic thing, and I don't have the two genes that cause the normal form of it.  I have one messed up gene of another type.   Anyway, what I learned was that my ferritin (iron) level was at 962 when it shouldn't have been above 150.  In reading up on it, I learned that vitamin C helps the body store iron.  I had been taking large doses of vitamin C every day for about 20 years because I thought that with its being an antioxidant, it would protect me from diseases like cancer.  Wrong!!!  Having hemochromatosis can actually cause some cancers, but I don't know if uterine is one of them or not.  I've never read anything to indicate that it is.  I had to have an MRI back when I had my genetic testing to see if I had an iron overload in my abdominal organs, but none was found.  My uterus had already been removed months before I found I had hemochromatosis, so I don't know if it was built up there or not.

    Anyway, you could try adding some vitamin C to your diet to see if that helps.  My oncologist made it sound like my chemo-induced anemia is different from iron-deficiency anemia, though, which I actually had when I was ten years old.  I had been eating nothing but peanut butter sandwiches for 2 weeks when I came down with that.  I was sicker then than I ever was with my cancer.  The lab tech told my doctor that my blood actually was white when they looked at it under the microscope.  I find it ironic (no pun intended) that I had an iron overload in my 60's from hemochromatosis, but my body wasn't storing extra iron when I was 10.  But then I guess I would have had to eat it to be able to store it. 

       

    I recently read about

    dates, as a source of iron.

    I eat dry dates, apricots and figs, all organic.