• My first chemo is next week and I never thought to ask about eating beforehand? Can I get up and eat breakfast or do I have to fast?

    Asked by dbain1990 on Thursday, July 19, 2012

    My first chemo is next week and I never thought to ask about eating beforehand? Can I get up and eat breakfast or do I have to fast?

    7 Answers from the Community

    7 answers
    • FreeBird's Avatar

      I do not know if it's different with any different drugs or cancers. I wouldn't think so. My dad never had to fast before two different chemotherapies, and they offer juice, decaf coffee, Ensure/Boost, snack crackers or cookies in the chemo room here. Some people bring food with them. You could call the place where you're going for chemo, and ask a nurse to be sure. They might advise you not to go big on breakfast just in case you feel nauseous. Here's a handy book about chemo, from the National Institute of Cancer http://www.cancer.gov/cancertopics/coping/chemotherapy-and-you.pdf

      I forgot to mention that our first appointment for chemotherapy was for patient education, to explain what to expect during chemo, and to sign the consent form.

      over 4 years ago
    • nancyjac's Avatar

      No, no fasting. In fact most chemo centers provide snacks and encourage you to eat before and during chemo.

      over 4 years ago
    • packerbacker's Avatar

      Like it's been mentioned, most cancer centers offer snacks and nutritional supplements while you are going through treatment. I usually had some of their snacks while getting my chemo the first time. Of course, everyone reacts differently to chemo. It is best to discuss it when you receive teaching for the chemo, to have a better idea of what to expect with the chemo drug you will get. I start chemo again next week, too. Good luck to you! I hope you tolerate it well!

      over 4 years ago
    • Cindy's Avatar

      I did not fast. I brought food with me and ate while I was given chemo - breakfast and lunch. Also, my doctor encouraged me to drink lots of water.

      over 4 years ago
    • Ivy's Avatar

      If you're having taxol plus carboplatin, you'll be there for about 5 hours. I always eat a light breakfast at home, bring healthy low-carb snacks (they provide snacks that are high-carb and not at all healthy if you have any tendency to blood sugar problems), and bring a very small cooler with ice. (My location has cold water in bottles but no ice, and I like really cold drinks.) My husband goes out around lunch time and brings a healthy lunch back for both of us. So we continue to eat, but we're careful what we eat. You don't want to go hungry, but don't over-eat, either. I also bring my computer, check email, watch TV, and often, fall asleep due to the intravenous Benedryl dose given before the actual chemo starts flowing.

      An extra tip: you might ask for a prescription for Emla cream, which deadens the area around the port. I apply it just before leaving home, which is about 45 minutes before we arrive for the appointment.

      over 4 years ago
    • markmather's Avatar

      Yep the deal with chemo is eat when you are able. I had a tough time later in the day so I would usually have a bagel in the morning pretreatment. Many times a friend would bring me healthy soups and crackers for lunch. After treatment it would be hit or miss for food. Nothing would sound good to me throughout the evening. It is true that the snacks provided were usually along the lines of sugary sweets to make you hungry. I would take an apple or two with me.

      over 4 years ago
    • eccrine100's Avatar

      Lots of answers but since all cancers can be very different, would it not be a good idea to check with the professional team administering the chemo?

      over 4 years ago

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