Loss of appetite is one of the most common side effects of cancer and cancer therapy. Many things affect appetite including illness, feeling sick (nausea, vomiting), pain, fatigue, anxiety, depression, or a combination of any of these. These side effects may also result in weight loss.
Keep these suggestions in mind to help stimulate your appetite:
The key to good nutrition is a balanced diet. The National Cancer Institute recommends that you include servings from the following four groups each day:
During your treatment there are certain foods you may want to avoid:
Many people lose interest in eating during therapy. Many foods seem to lose flavor. Chemotherapy can make foods such as red meat taste bitter. If you experience this, try cooking mean in soy sauce, fruit juice, or wine. It is very important for you to keep up your calorie intake even on those days when food does not taste quite the same as before. To make dinner more appetizing, try setting the table with good china and a bouquet of flowers. Candles and soft music can make mealtime more pleasant. Some people find that a walk before meals is a good way to stir the appetite. Remember that you need to eat enough food so that your body can have the energy to heal itself.