Member
Posts: 169
Registered: ‎01-05-2012

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

well fasting not going so well but not so bad either lol .  Had an apple yesterday and some eggs in the evening.   Today just had an apple.  Apart from that just black coffee and water.  Im starving tho.  Got chemo tomorrow.  

Member
Posts: 169
Registered: ‎01-05-2012

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

Ok thanks.  Yes will try to continue fasting after.  Probably will just want to sleep anyhow 

B74
Member
Posts: 37
Registered: ‎06-12-2018

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

Good luck gocat. The fasting isn’t easy, but hopefully it will help reduce your SEs or at least bounce back quicker.
I think it’s important not to eat for a little while after as well - to avoid more strain on your liver - I tried for 24 hours after but only made it to 22.
Member
Posts: 169
Registered: ‎01-05-2012

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

Hi. Had my first chemo 27th December and suffered very severe nausea for the following 7 days.  

It is now 48 hours till my next chemo.  Have had a decent breakfast and plan to fast to see if I get fewer side effects for my next chemo.  

So water it is for the next 48 hours Smiley Surprised  

Member
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎11-11-2018

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

Hi @B74,

Just like Blueash said, fasting won't stop every side effect, but i must say its helped me so far. I was so scared of having chemo and although i'm not over the moon about having it now, but i feel more prepared both mentally and physically, and able to deal with the little side effects that i experience. One thing i do after chemo is rest, for the first couple of days i don't go anywhere, i drink about 4-5 litres of water a day and eat small portions pf food. I think this has helped me a lot. By day 3-4 i'm usually feeling pretty good.
This forum has really helped me, so I thank everyone for their comments and for sharing their experiences.
I'm sure once your body gets used to the fasting, you'll see an improvement on how fast you bounce back 🤞🏾
Community Champion
Posts: 779
Registered: ‎26-06-2016

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

When they say the side effects are easier and less they don't mean none existent! My blood counts still went low and I felt rough and tired BUT I was never sick, I did not have diarrhoea for days on end and I did not get mouth sores, thrush, peeling skin or anything else unpleasant.

 

Like you I seemed to bounce back a lot quicker than other people and it was the contrast between the mice that did it for me. Have you seen that video with the mice? If not I will link to it but it is on here somewhere.

B74
Member
Posts: 37
Registered: ‎06-12-2018

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

Well a quick update - AC#1 hit me like a freight train in the evening (around 3-4 hours after the infusion) - nausea, dizziness, headaches and exhaustion. I was a bit taken by surprise as I'd had some idea the SEs usually hit after a couple of days (maybe I got mixed up with other drugs). I was miserable and also disappointed the fasting hadn't been a 'magic bullet' after all - I'd been secretly hoping not to experience anything much!

 

Day 2 was much of the same: nausea, sleeping a lot, and basically feeling like everything had been stripped out of me and I was just an empty shell incapable of doing anything except stare blankly at the ceiling (or sleep). But day 3, I woke feeling much more human and thought maybe I'd turned a corner, went for a 25 min walk and could eat normally (later went downhill and got very tired again).

 

Today I feel ALMOST back to normal, with just slight nausea (but have not taken any meds), a few taste alterations (water isn't any good, can't stand the thought of coffee or anything sweet etc) and tiredness which is probably more to do with a very disrupted night thanks partly to my daughter deciding to rearrange her room at midnight. It's now about 72 hours since the infusion and I feel mostly back to normal.

 

So overall... I wasn't sure in the beginning that I'd fast again, but now that I'm feeling better, I'm thinking - if the SEs from AC normally last a week, I will gladly water fast for those 48 hours beforehand if it means limiting the worst effects to a couple of days (while hopefully also causing more damage to the cancer cells). The ~22 hours fasting post-chemo were easy, I couldn't have eaten if you paid me.

Community Champion
Posts: 779
Registered: ‎26-06-2016

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

OK - well good luck with it and just in case you don't know, it is far more important to fast before the chemo than after. So if you are struggling concentrate on the before

 

That switch over that you mention is your body going from energy in your gut to stored energy (your fat stores). You have to deplete your gut and the glycogen in your liver before that happens. If you fast for 36 hours or more regularly that switch becomes so automatic that you don't notice and it is why people say "eating makes you hungry".

 

There are lots of health benefits to water only fasting so please try to stick with it.

 

B74
Member
Posts: 37
Registered: ‎06-12-2018

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

Ok I've now had my first dose of AC which went ok (not as bad as I'd feared). I've now been fasting for 56 hours with another 22 to go! I found it got VERY difficult from around the 36 hour mark (I was very lightheaded and weak), but just before 48 hours something switched, and I went back to feeling normal! It was a huge relief as I was thinking I wasn't going to be able to do it again next time. Now I just need to wait & see what the side effects are. 

B74
Member
Posts: 37
Registered: ‎06-12-2018

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

[ Edited ]

Wow Melba72, even semi-fasting on Christmas Day shows a lot of grit! I'm really glad to hear you're feeling good.

 

I'm only 10 hours into a planned 77 hour fast (a bit over 48 hours before my first chemo on Fri, then 24 hours from the expected finish time). I have no trouble physically (don't even really feel hungry) but psychologically it's torture! I just WANT to eat because I REALLY like food! The same thing happened when I did a couple of 48 hour practice fasts. I always find myself back on Google, searching for scientific articles and anecdotal reports to reinforce why I'm doing it (but I think I've already read them all Smiley Frustrated).

 

Anyway this thread has been very helpful and it's really nice to know that others (even if only a few) are also doing it. 

Member
Posts: 5
Registered: ‎11-11-2018

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

Hi All,

Just an update on my fasting for 27th Dec cycle. So I semi fasted on Christmas day, was the hardest thing ever🤦🏾‍♀️. The only meal i had that day was my Christmas dinner and one mince pie, but i enjoyed it. I fasted completely on Boxing day and had my 3rd round of EC on 27th, which went well. Had slight nausea by the evening, but it seem to settle and I woke up the next day actually feeling pretty good.
@JacqB how was yours?

I hope you all had a good Christmas and look forward to a bright positive New Year🤞🏾❤
Community Champion
Posts: 779
Registered: ‎26-06-2016

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

Well I had Herceptin every 3 weeks for 18 rounds and that gives you aches and pains so I took 2 claritin hay fever tablets every day. This is why:

http://myangrycancer.blogspot.com/2013/02/claritin-is-worth-its-weight-in-gold.html

 

I also had a massive amount of water retention which lasted for ages but my doctor said it would take about a year after my last one to shed that and he was right.

 

Now I feel and look fine. Once the Herceptin was over the aches and pains stopped after a month and the water retention stayed but gradually it all went in the end.

B74
Member
Posts: 37
Registered: ‎06-12-2018

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

Thank you Blueash. I did read some of your earlier posts (I think from a couple of years ago!) where you talked about fasting & how you felt it had helped limit your side effects compared to others who didn't fast. I'm interested to know how you're going this far out from the end of treatment. I know a lot of people complain of ongoing issues (pain, tiredness etc) long after chemo has finished and am wondering if you have any of that? 

 

I also strictly limit sugar & flour & fast around 16 hours most days, but I haven't been able to go keto, I'm mostly vegetarian and love my veggies & legumes so would really need a LOT of good evidence to make me give all that up!!!!

Community Champion
Posts: 779
Registered: ‎26-06-2016

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

[ Edited ]

Hello, I fasted during chemo and still fast regularly now to keep my blood chemistry in check. I tend to have One meal a Day and put in a 3 day fast every now and again.

 

If I ever have more serious issues with disease I would seriously consider a keto diet but for the moment I limit flour/sugar but I do eat some carbs and fast for 22 hours or more every day.

 

It is only a habit that most of us graze all day and the advice to eat 6 small meals a day to keep your metabolism up is outdated. At the end of the day it is your body so the decision must be yours but enough of us have done it to prove that it does make your chemo journey easier to cope with. Read/watch all you can on the topic. I took all my steroids on an empty stomach and had no issues.

 

 

B74
Member
Posts: 37
Registered: ‎06-12-2018

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

To clarify (my brain isn’t working very well!!) - JacB I know you’re doing this - I just wanted to post something so I could ‘chat’ to you & anyone else out there who is fasting
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B74
Member
Posts: 37
Registered: ‎06-12-2018

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

I know this thread was started a couple of years ago but has been added to more recently so I am hoping to find someone else who is either currently fasting or intending to fast through chemotherapy. I have my appointment with the medical oncologist next Tue so don't yet know what regime they have planned for me (nor the start date) but have been told I need 6 months of chemo. A colleague with very similar BC characteristics had 3 months of 3-weekly AC then 3 months of weekly Taxol so I'm thinking I might be in for something similar. I've done daily intermittent fasting (on & off) most of this year and have also done a 48 hour water-only fast so I do know what is involved. I intend to tell the oncologist & am afraid he'll be against it but am committed to trying anyway. 

Member
Posts: 266
Registered: ‎22-05-2018

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

That’s so true Sally, I have no way of knowing how I would have felt if I hadn’t fasted. I’ve been persuaded by the doctors I’ve seen on various sites who are adamant that it helps protect the healthy rapidly growing cells and leaves cancer cells vulnerable.
Jacq x
Member
Posts: 686
Registered: ‎03-04-2018

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

Can I just interject here and say that it's not a done deal that it helps. I didn't fast (far from it) and also had no side effects at all from the chemo. I also had fortnightly EC.
Member
Posts: 13
Registered: ‎10-10-2018

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

I'll have a look at sites recommended. Big concern would be treatment being delayed due to bloods not being at high enough level. Glad it works well for you.
Member
Posts: 266
Registered: ‎22-05-2018

Re: Anyone else fasting while on chemo?

@sunbeam it definitely is a minefield and not something to try lightly. I have no way of testing the impact on wbc or liver metabolism so I can only go by how I have felt compared to the side effects others have reported. Whilst I didn’t have any mouth, nail or skin problems and very little nausea, I did have very low neuts and Low wbc but these both rose to normal in a few days. The most interesting videos I watched were on dietdoctor.com. You can get a free trial membership and watch them if interested. I also read a lot about Valtor Llongo and messaged his team directly. They wished me well but did say that fasting during chemo can be dangerous and should be managed by a doctor. As my doctor knows nothing about it and told me not to, I went against medical advice by fasting.
I’m day two now and feel fine and eating low carb. Check out the diet doctor website, it’s very ethical and full of great info.
Jacq x