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Dealing with Taste Changes During Lung Cancer Treatment

Taste alterations and aversions can be a common side effect from certain lung cancer chemotherapy drugs. When food does not taste the way you expect it to (or it has a bad taste taste), it can affect your appetite and contribute to weight loss. Luckily, there are tricks you can use to combat taste changes, whether it be lack of taste, metallic taste, or any other type of taste change. In this article, we will review common taste alterations along with some suggested foods to choose to offset those changes.

Lung Cancer and Nutrition Q&A

When you are navigating a lung cancer diagnosis, nutrition can be an important part of your journey. Eating a well-balanced diet before, during & after treatment, can help you feel better, maintain your strength and speed your recovery.

On March 27, 2019, LUNGevity hosted an Experts Twitter Chat with Tasha Feilke, MS, RD, CSO, an oncology dietician at Savor Health, to discuss important nutrition issues for lung cancer patients. Tasha also shared tips and resources to help make informed choices about nutrition and help you to achieve and maintain good health.

 

What are some healthy snack ideas for lung cancer patients?

Sometimes it can be difficult to find motivation the to eat healthy. During lung cancer treatment, food may not taste as good as it used to and it can be easy to succumb to comforting and maybe, not so healthy, snacks.  While all food is fine in moderation, unhealthy snacking can affect your energy level.  Since lung cancer treatments can also contribute to fatigue, so it is important to eat healthy to maintain good nutrition and energy levels.

How to Hydrate: Healthy Drink Choices for Lung Cancer Patients

Hydration is one of the most important factors for lung cancer patients. Dehydration can cause you to be lightheaded or dizzy, but also make treatment-related side effects, like nausea, dry mouth, and constipation, much worse.1 Research has also shown that when cancer patients are fully hydrated, they have fewer complications and better quality of life compared with those who are dehydrated.2 However, for cancer patients and caregivers, it can be difficult to know what to drink and how much.

Are Herbs and Spice Beneficial for Lung Cancer Patients?

When you are undergoing lung cancer treatment, food may not be as desirable. This is especially true if your taste has diminished or changed. Adding herbs and spices to your foods can help enhance the flavors and make them more enjoyable to eat. But did you know that certain spices are beneficial for your health as a lung cancer patient? Below are a just a few spices and herbs to consider when cooking or preparing your meals to benefit your health and nutritional status.

Is Protein Intake Important During Lung Cancer Treatment?

Adequate nutrition is an important factor in lung cancer treatment, and a major player in adequate nutrition is protein. Whether you are undergoing treatments, such as chemotherapy, radiation, surgery, and immunotherapy or are a lung cancer survivor, protein can help you in multiple ways.  In this article, we will review why protein is important, what foods are high in protein, and tips to getting enough protein while undergoing treatment.

Why is Protein Important?

5 Reasons Why Nutrition Matters (A Lot) During Cancer Treatment

We’ve all heard the phrase “food is medicine,” but what does that really mean? In honor of National Nutrition Month this March, we are here to highlight why nutrition is a critical part of cancer prevention, treatment, and survivorship!  Did you know that at the time of diagnosis, 90% of cancer patients already have addressable nutritional symptoms related to their cancer?  Unfortunately, many of these patients never receive nutrition intervention or support.1,2   

Here are five of the many reasons why good nutrition can help you on your cancer journey:

 

Resource Highlight: Ina®️, The Intelligent Nutrition Assistant

Rose Vining was initially diagnosed with lung cancer in 2011; she had two recurrences in the 5 years after her diagnosis. Over the years, she had several treatments, including two surgeries which resulted in the removal of her entire left lung, chemotherapy, SBRT radiation therapy, and, after her recurrence in 2016, more radiation, which left her with ¾ of a lung to breathe with.  Rose feels fortunate to be cancer-free now, but these treatments exasperated some of Rose’s pre-existing conditions; the foods she eats now have a huge impact on how she feels physically.