• Is there any suggestions as how to deal with loss of taste from taking chemo drugs?

    Asked by Barron on Thursday, December 6, 2012

    Is there any suggestions as how to deal with loss of taste from
    taking chemo drugs?

    21 Answers from the Community

    21 answers
    • Nancebeth's Avatar
      Nancebeth

      I had a horrible metallic taste in my mouth for the duration of my chemo. I lost sense of taste as well. I found that if I ate very spicy or very foods, that helped. There is a water you can order that helps alleviate the metallic taste, but I never tried it. It took a few weeks after I finished chemo to get my full taste buds back but I still have horrible dry mouth.

      over 4 years ago
    • cancervivor's Avatar
      cancervivor

      I never had the metallic taste that a lot of people have, I just either couldn't taste or things tasted bad or weird. I never found an answer for most of it. I found some things that tasted good or the same, and survived off of those.

      Hope you do better with it.

      over 4 years ago
    • RachaelC@StF's Avatar
      RachaelC@StF Community Outreach Coordinator 317-528-7794

      Hi Barron,
      Check out this article to see the suggestions made- they've a good array!
      http://www.cancer.net/all-about-cancer/treating-cancer/managing-side-effects/taste-changes
      Keep us posted on what works for you!

      over 4 years ago
    • nancyjac's Avatar
      nancyjac

      I just experimented until I found a couple of foods that tasted at list somewhat like they should. For me it was cheese and anything tomato based. Bland carbs, like crackers, pasta, rice, etc. were pretty much tasteless but at least they didn't taste terrible like most other foods did.

      over 4 years ago
    • ticklingcancer's Avatar
      ticklingcancer

      Everything tasted like XXX while on chemo. The good news is that it corrects itself when you're done. Like Nancebeth says, spicy food helps. Eating something sweet helped me. Let us all know if you figure something out that works best for you. Quite a few WhatNexters have this same problem.

      over 4 years ago
    • gwendolyn's Avatar
      gwendolyn

      Personally, I enjoyed things that were really spicy, really sour, really sweet, or really salty. (In spite of the fact that plain water tasted salty and was very unpleasant.) Eating lemon drops before a meal is supposed to help but it didn't do much for me.

      over 4 years ago
    • KarynBe's Avatar
      KarynBe

      I had that metallic taste too. I still can't eat red meat because of that memory. But I did love to eat the Kosher Beef franks, they were very flavorful to me. My mom used to also make a tamarind based soup called "sinigang", which is a filipinio dish that was salty, sour and a little spicy. The other thing that I loved and could really taste was Ben and Jerry's Fudge Brownie ice cream. Also, try putting a squeeze of lemon or lime in your water. But most importantly, keep yourself hydrated.

      over 4 years ago
    • Nancyb's Avatar
      Nancyb

      Cold food help's. For me yogart is the only thing that really feel bearable. And salt is a must.enough to taste it. It help drown out the dead bland tastes. Also cream of wheat with salt butter cranberries brown sugar and milk. Hope this helps someone. This taste issue kid so frustrating. My doctor just poopooed it away when I tried to talk to him about it. So happy to find this site

      over 4 years ago
    • Nancebeth's Avatar
      Nancebeth

      Wow, just realized the second part of my comment made no sense..."very spicy or very foods." DUH! I meant very spicy or very sweet foods. Cupcakes were my fave while on chemo. My neighborhood bakery, Heavenly Treats knows me VERY well :-) And their Boston Creme cupcakes are soooo delish.

      over 4 years ago
    • Nomadicme's Avatar
      Nomadicme

      I had that during the chemo, plus the smell of meat and coffee and many other things was repugnant. Unfortunately I discovered that sweet things would mask the horrible taste. I say unfortunately as I could have lost a good amount of weight had I not discovered ice cream tasted just fine. Of course the day I got pumped full of steroids I'd go crazy eating everything, the tuff made me crazy ravenous. So after that I'd have digestive issues. I had no control, and those around e felt too sorry for me to interfere. I wish you good nutrition.

      over 4 years ago
    • karen1956's Avatar
      karen1956

      I ate whatever tasted good for me...one suggestion is to use plastic flatware and if you drink soda to pour it into a glass or cup instead of drinking out of the can...I craved fruit...strawberries, watermelon, apples...ate chicken, potatoes...and to be honest, don't remember what else....

      over 4 years ago
    • SherrySwett's Avatar
      SherrySwett

      Nothing smelled or tasted good except yogurt, oranges and Weight Watchers chocolate peanutbutter shakes make with milk and ice and banana (if someone else peeled it). I really wanted watermelon and strawberries. I thought I couldn't even drink iced fruit smoothies from McDonalds but I learned that if the fruit was frozen it was OK. When I started to get my taste back after a couple of weeks I craved oranges and ground beef steaks. Another thing I really liked was from McDonalds, a mocha frappe. I lost my taste for coffee and Diet Coke. I still don't drink that but I drink a couple of cups of coffee a day.

      over 4 years ago
    • jhale17's Avatar
      jhale17

      Eating is an important issue to deal with as swallowing may be a problem. If the patient has periods of tastelessness where most things taste like cardboard, they will require an attitude adjustment. A friend of mine said it this way, “My Marine doctor told me, ‘If you don’t eat you die!’” My doctors told me to eat anything, just eat. Once I was sitting next to a survivor and he said he was happy because last evening he was able to eat a plain baked potato. Try a variety of foods to see if you can find those that come close to pleasing the palate. What tastes good this month may not be next month. If you do not eat one night it is not the end of the world and tomorrow may be better.

      Some doctors prescribe what they call “miracle mouthwash” to use for dealing with mouth sores and sore throat. The doctor mixes an RX of different things to soothe the throat. It numbs the mouth tissue to give relief plus it heals.

      Eating, drinking lots of water, sleeping and rest with some exercise in a daily routine usually helps.

      Hang in there it does not last forever.

      over 4 years ago
    • Crash's Avatar
      Crash

      Keep eating. Your sense of taste will return. As we age our sense of taste diminishes. Not that you're old, but you might want to try some hot sauce in order to get some experience a sense of taste.

      over 4 years ago
    • Carol-Charlie's Avatar
      Carol-Charlie

      Hi Barron. I dealt with it by eating French Toast only for about two-three weeks. Then I added Chicken Noodle Soup... and salty crackers... Then about three months into my chemo.... my taste came. Just keep putting healthy food in... and before long, you'll be eating and tasteting the good stuff again,.

      over 4 years ago
    • LisaLathrop's Avatar
      LisaLathrop

      Lemon drops and citrus fruits helped me out. Also, don't eat your favorite foods!! They don't taste the same and will leave an impression of that awful taste forevermore. My taste buds came back after about 4 months of no more chemo. As for the dry mouth try Biotene products....they help me still after 4 years in remission I still have dry mouth occassionally.

      http://www.biotene.com/dry-mouth-products?google=b_&rotation=4506&banner=28205&kw=300635

      over 4 years ago
    • geekling's Avatar
      geekling

      If you are willing, lets try an experiment. The drugs likely change the way you taste but not that you can taste. Soak a 1/4 cup of raisins in 3/4 cup of water overnight. In the morning, drain the soak water into a glass and drink the water. If you can let me know whether it tastes sweet, sour, salty, or bitter, or like nothing to you, I think I can help you from there.

      For the time being, you are much better off eating whole foods (the sort which comes from the produce aisle) than packages of stuff.

      This, too, shall pass. :-]

      over 4 years ago
    • pancrease54's Avatar
      pancrease54

      Barron,

      I had it for six months. and to this day i can't really taste bread, of all things. Get some of the new gum that keeps your moth damp. your teeth need moisture to live and I lost all of mine about two years after 6 months of 24/7 5FU. I had horrible effects on my hand and fet, toally re & raw, almost lost all finger and toe nails. I had pancreatic cancer (Stage IIb) but here I am, 8 and 1/2 years out.

      Good luck, let us hear from you as you progress.

      over 4 years ago
    • tombo's Avatar
      tombo

      you guys are all very funny,for some odd reason,,i was craving fruit and veggies also,,meat,,gross...shrimp looks and tastes like styrofoam,,but the cocktail sauce was really good,,for some reason i have been craveingsweets also,,narcotics may be the reason,,but chocolate,,also gross,,but i do like those mini eclairs they have in the frozen food section,,some one mentioned tomatos,,ME too,,i really eat alot of italian,foods,,,pizza,,lasagna,,sspaghetti and meat balls,,although the meatballs,,you must over salt them to taste them,,and of all things,,another thing i crave is of all things,,,MATZA ball soup!!,,my next door neighbor growing up ,,was a chef caterer,,inthe 1960's and 70's..she always had me taste her food,,and she taught me how to cook,,any how,,i digress,,just keep tasting,,and you will find somthing you like,,,ohh yeah,,i never ate the lobsters i bought the other day,,they are in the freezer,,my dad laughed very hard that i bought 4 lobster,,and 2 lbs of sea scallops to treat myself,,ohhh am i lucky to have my 80 year old parents,,and 5 siblings and there families to help me get thru this,,,ok,,i talk to much,,and my puncuation and spelling are just awful these days,,i hope its not frustrating for you people to read my rants,,,bye,,,xomike

      over 4 years ago
    • tombo's Avatar
      tombo

      you guys are all very funny,for some odd reason,,i was craving fruit and veggies also,,meat,,gross...shrimp looks and tastes like styrofoam,,but the cocktail sauce was really good,,for some reason i have been craveingsweets also,,narcotics may be the reason,,but chocolate,,also gross,,but i do like those mini eclairs they have in the frozen food section,,some one mentioned tomatos,,ME too,,i really eat alot of italian,foods,,,pizza,,lasagna,,sspaghetti and meat balls,,although the meatballs,,you must over salt them to taste them,,and of all things,,another thing i crave is of all things,,,MATZA ball soup!!,,my next door neighbor growing up ,,was a chef caterer,,inthe 1960's and 70's..she always had me taste her food,,and she taught me how to cook,,any how,,i digress,,just keep tasting,,and you will find somthing you like,,,ohh yeah,,i never ate the lobsters i bought the other day,,they are in the freezer,,my dad laughed very hard that i bought 4 lobster,,and 2 lbs of sea scallops to treat myself,,ohhh am i lucky to have my 80 year old parents,,and 5 siblings and there families to help me get thru this,,,ok,,i talk to much,,and my puncuation and spelling are just awful these days,,i hope its not frustrating for you people to read my rants,,,bye,,,xomike

      over 4 years ago
    • Myungclas' Avatar
      Myungclas

      Acidic things worked for me...lemon or crystal light in water...ketchup or BBQ sauce on meat...minestrone. I have a friend who ate dill pickles with every meal and swore it neutralized the metallic taste. Good luck finding what works for you! This part ends with the treatment...the good news.

      over 4 years ago

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