There are currently no thorough studies into fasting and chemotherapy, although a very small study into some animals showed promise. I imagine it will be an ongoing area of study, however it will always only be relevant to some as some of our post chemo drugs need to be taken with food.
What people need to be very careful of is if they have been given drugs that specify that they have to be taken with food then there is good reason for that and that statement shouldn't be ignored. Society, nowadays, seem to think these warnings are just for the sake of it or don't really matter, but they do. When tablets are meant to be taken with food and you take them without you can harm yourself.
Personally I don't get into the latest fads and am happy that a sensible healthy diet is the best way to maintain my overall health. Since I need to take steroids on days 1-4 of my cycle that most definitely rules out fasting, as they have to be taken with food. Apart from that, if I fast my weight will be too low for me to have any reserves to fight anyway.
I mentioned fasting both to my BC nurse and Onco . Both were very clear that in their opinion a varied healthy diet was best. I think not upsetting the body even more was their take on the situation. I know that the medical world does differentiate between a 'study' and 'research'. However, having read Walter Longo's study I did a 48 hours liquid diet before and after chemo. I certainly had minimum nausea, and felt very good. I knew I wouldn't be able to fast, but fresh soups, fruit and veg smoothies and loads of water and green tea did it for me. X
Ive watched some of Valter Longo’s interviews and presentations on fasting.Interesting stuff.
I haven’t tried a full fast because I know from bitter experience how temperamental my blood glucose can be so a full fast for 48-72 hrs prior to treatment is out of the question for me .
That said I’ve tried to take the principal and use it in a way that works for me.I’ve had 2 sessions of chemo and for the two days before each session I reduced my calorie intake significantly , around 500 calories per day. Also tried to make sure that I didn’t eat after 7pm the latest. If I was thirsty, it was water , black or herbal tea.
The morning of chemo , just a cup of tea with a little milk and that would be it .
Given the way cancer feeds itself, fasting and following the ketogenic diet are among a number of methods that make sense. As with all things, what works is a very individual thing and obviously there are pre-existing medical conditions to also consider.
I was following a ketogenic diet rigorously before my first chemo session. However, since the first session, I haven’t simply because the nausea I experience means that the last thing I feel like eating are loads of fats. My appetite for about 10 days after chemo is much reduced. Again , an individual thing. Some of the women in my group( February) are the total opposite and feel ravenous since starting chemo.
I guess the bottom line is, you need to do your homework, get expert support if you can and go from there. However, be warned the majority experience seems to be that most oncologists aren’t great / open to considering the existing knowledge about diet and how it affects cancer in treatment protocols. Frankly, that may be a function of the fact that nutrition hasn’t been and isn’t a part of their training and the fact that the genetic basis for cancer has had such a hold on treatments and finding cures for years despite Warburg’s research results decades ago.
Good of luck with everything.
I know there are some small studies done on fasting and reducing chemotherapy side effects but was wondering if anyone had any experience of this or oncologists ever mention this? The research is still early on this issue but there was a study published in 2018 specifically on breast cancer chemo with fasting which had promising results.