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Question about antioxidants


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Hello Everyone,

Haven't posted for a while but have been reading often. I started my treatments on 6/21 - taxol/carbo/avastin. So far side effects have been manageable; hair has started to fall out like crazy. I'm sure it will be gone by the end of week...keep reminding myself that it's the least of my worries..as long as the treatments work, I can put up with anything!!!!

My question: For the past two years I've been taking OPC3 and ORAC (isotonic form of antioxidants). When I went to re-order, the gal I get the stuff from said "STOP TAKIMG" them while you are on chemo. Reason being since part of the benefits is to increase cell growth and it doesn't differentiate between good and bad cells, it may inhibit the benefits of the chemo. I mentioned this to my Onc on my last visit. She said that there is no solid evidence either way, but to stop taking it just to be purdent. Well, needless to say I've been freaking out.......silently....OK, NOT so silently ever since. Does this mean that my first treatment might not have had the benefits it should have? I think they are planning to do a scan after my next treatment to see how things are going. I'll be nervous at it is..... now I'm thinking they should wait until after the 3rd treatment??

Has anyone out there had any experience with this? Sorry for the long post. Hope everyone out there is OK. You are all in my daily (sometimes hourly) prayers.

Hugs all around,


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I too was advised to take a break from antioxidants while on chemo, from beginning first to 3 weeks after last.

Antioxidants are good things to have in your cells, but they have the opposite effect -- they essentially are working against the chemo.

I wouldn't worry that you've done any great harm or bollixed the first chemo. Just quit taking the antioxidants until after you're done with chemo for a while, as chemo continues to work for a while.

Remember these are over the counter "food supplements" and they do not have the potency of a drug, never mind chemo. Just why bother fighting yourself? When comes time to heal up, take the antioxidants and all the supplements your doctor okays.

And relax. It's okay.


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I echo what MaryAnn said. As crazy as it sounds, you WANT your body to be as toxic as possible to kill off the bad cells during chemo. (Don't forget the water though!) Our Doc nixed the antioxident's right from the beginning. Don't drive yourself crazy though about taking some already. I know, I know... easier said than done. :?


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I wouldn't worry about taking the antioxidants you did -- the best news is that you covered what you were taking with your doctor and you have been advised accordingly. We all need to do that -- safest to go over everything with our docs., including over the counter stuff.

Best to you,


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