Experiences with Weight Loss
The main factors of weight loss in cancer patients is loss of appetite, nausea, cytokines (chemicals that affect appetite), stress, cancer tumors that press on your digestive tract, or surgeries that affect your throat. Side effects of chemotherapy and radiation therapy such as diarrhea, nausea, fatigue, vomiting, taste changes, and mouth sores can also be factors in weight loss. You might feel like you can afford to lose a few pounds, but losing an unhealthy amount of weight during cancer treatment can be dangerous to your health. Patients also experience weight gain during treatment and have a hard time losing the weight after treatment.
Seeking help from a dietitian or nutrition specialist can help with weight changes during treatment. There are also practical ways to work to maintain a healthy weight. WhatNexters that have worked diligently to change their diet suggest eating soft and smooth foods like casseroles, pasta, soup, smoothies, peanut butter, protein shakes, and yogurt. They also suggest eating foods with fiber, exercising regularly, eating less processed foods, cutting out sugar, adding fruits and vegetables, finding foods you can force yourself to eat even when you lose your appetite, and to pay attention to your weight so you can report any drastic changes to your doctor. It is important to work with your caregiver and doctor to identify what works for you.
If you are looking for practical solutions for weight loss, look below for personal stories, experiences, and insights from people that have experienced weight changes during treatment.
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