Food restrictions when taking taxol/carbo

My friend was diagnosed with ovarian cancer a few months ago. She had her surgery and had finished her 2 rounds of chemotherapy of paclitaxel and carboplatin. She will start her 3rd round in a few days. Are there any food restrictions when on chemotherapy? i.e., is there certain food that she should avoid such as eggs, sea foods, fish? Are there any food that will be helpful to improve her general health?

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I was never given any food restrictions while on chemo (3 times). They were happy I ate anything because of the nausea.

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My doctors advised I avoid shellfish, raw fish (i.e. sushi), undercooked meat, raspberries and blackberries since they harbor microorganisms and bacteria, and soft cheeses which are ripened by mold (blue cheese, brie, gorganzola). Here's a link to livestrong.com explaining why these foods should be avoided: http://www.livestrong.com/article/114154-foods-avoid-undergoing-chemotherap y/.

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In addition to what others have listed, dairy (milk, ice cream) gave me tummy cramps and gas after awhile. Taxol is rough on the digestive track. I splurged on ice cream every so often. It was worth it. Some people have a tough time digesting raw fruits and vegetables. I eat lots of popsicles on the days when I'm quesy and have metal mouth. Throughout my appetite has been fairly good. The steroids they give me by IV before chemo has made me gain 15 lbs over 8 months. I eat almost no meat because it's hard to digest. Oddly, I can eat spicy food with no problems. Drink a lot of liquids, especially water. It will aid digestion and help the kidneys and liver function better. Seafood (except cold water fish) has a lot of mercury in it and should be avoided anyway. I hope your friend has an easy time with her chemo. It is not as bad as I thought it would be. She's lucky to have you looking out for her.

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They told me to avoid the same foods as CALuckyGirl. Also be ultra sensible about potlucks and salad bars and kitchen cleanliness -- you really don't want to pick up food poisoning while on chemo. Chemo is hard on the lining of the digestive tract, so as time goes on she may find she can't tolerate some foods. I had to give up my favorite high-fiber cereal for a while because it just caused too much pain. And I gave up bubbly drinks because I had so much gas. And her sense of taste may change. It's all temporary -- chemo is one time in life when you can be fickle about food choices and not feel guilty. . Do try to avoid constipation, that's a common side effect.

Did we mention drinking lots and lots of water? Or any fluid, if she doesn't like water.

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I read somewhere that it's possible grapefruit may enhance the action of some chemotherapy drugs, the way it does statins (it can enhance statins to the point they become toxic and cause liver damage). Ask you medical oncologist.

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Thanks so much for all the replies. I really appreciate them. God bless you all!

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My onc. told me to eat as much protein as I could to gain strength during chemo. Lots of fluids, water. I lost my sense of taste starting with salt. It did come back a month after I finished chemo. Like Mary Ann I leaned toward spicy food thinking it might shock my taste buds. No luck. Chinese mustard that can almost take your breath away. Nope! I ate to live and had to change my thinking to eat healthy. I was so tired I had to eat by 4pm or just drank a can of Insure and went to bed. I must have done something right. I never had to cancel chemo and only had 2 units of blood for low red blood cell counts.

Good luck and God speed! It will be over before you know it. I have been in remission 10 months and chemo seems like a dream.

Marty

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I just ate anything I felt like with my oncologist's blessing. My taste buds were effected big time and I went from a very healthy diet to eating lots of sweet things and more carbs. I put on a little bit of weight but did not care as wanted to look like a well person - not a sick person. I was more worried about picking up an infection as had a couple of bouts of bronchitis - Blackmore's Sustained Release Vit C - just once a day, sorted that out, I can recommend it. All the best.

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Another food to absolutely avoid, especially on Taxol is soy (it seems that genistein in soy can interfere with Taxol. So those who consume soy (I would absolutely NOT go near any soy food anyway), should stop several days before and start again several days after treatment.

Two books you and your friend should read:
Anti-Cancer - A New Way of Life by Dr. Servan-Schreiber and
the excellent and practical book written by Dr. Keith Block: Life Over Cancer. He does address chemo and supplements and foods in his book.
His website:
http://blockmd.com/

His book:

http://blockmd.com/LifeOverCancer.htm

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Just finished 8 rounds of chemo for a recurrence. Had carbo/taxol/avastin. It is the Carbo that changes your taste buds. I can eat whatever I want but a lot of times things do not taste the same or they taste bitter or just off to me.

First bout and this second bout I still follow the careful part. I do not eat anything with raw egg in it. (like cookie dough) I do not buy things at bake sales as you have no idea what that person selling stuff does in their kitchen. I am a purel on my hands freak before every meal especially out at a restaurant. (first bout I didn't even go to restaurants)

While doing those drugs the nausea can change a lot so eating what you can is what I do.

I was always a desert freak but right now sugary things are a big turnoff. For some reason spicy foods taste good.

As for the eat this, eat that I say a lot of it is just marketing. I think just in general eat well, eat what you like, and moderation on the "bad" foods.

Nancy

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My onc also said lots of protien. Otherwise no restrictions. I never was nauseous, ate like a pig and gained weight all thru chemo.
Steroids?
Patty

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I was told to eat no raw foods since the immune system is increasingly compromised. Also avoid fresh flowers, whitening toothpastes, and floss. I ignored the toothbrush/floss advice and continued to use my electric toothbrush and I found an extra gentle floss. I did experience fevers at nadir after my 4th, 5th, and 6th infusions, but they only lasted a day or two. Not eating salads and fruits during the bountiful summer season was tough.

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