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Chemo/Radiation w/no Appetite

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I'm not sure which thread I was reading the subject of keeping weight up during chemo or radiation, so I started a new one ...

My mom only had chemo and surgery (that included chemo) thus far, but she was diagnosed with diabetes about a month prior to her LC diagnosis. I think the diabetes was brought to the forefront because she was not feeling well and run down otherwise, we just didn't know what it was at first. She was a person who loved sweets, she was probably a little overweight but not much. When she started watching her diet diabetic-wise, she naturally lost some weight because of that, but I think it concerned the onc at first.

Anyway, I'm getting off the subject ... the onc had prescribed anti-nausea pills for her to take if needed. She never complained of actual nausea, so she wasn't taking them. But, she would say she "didn't feel like eating". I had her start taking the nausea pills (which she wasn't thinking she needed) and they actually helped her want to eat more. She has gained back any weight she lost w/the first round of chemo and the Alimta hasn't bothered her.

She had her last (of six) Alimta treatments yesterday ... now the scary waiting game ....

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This is really helpful information. As you may have read from brother's post below, our dad has lost 10 lbs. since his diagnosis one month ago. My dad has always been slender and fit--so 10 lbs is a lot! In the past, my dad has been very health conscious--eating lots of whole grains, fruits, vegetables, and wild salmon. Now, we are coming to learn that with cancer--healthy eating is really about high calorie eating. So, last night, my brother brought him some packs of Ensure, Zone bars, and ice-cream. We have to get his weight up!

We will also speak with his oncologist about anti-nausea medication as well. I am visiting him next week and I have also scheduled an appointment with the oncology center's nutritionist.

I've seen some of the responses below--but if anyone has any additional thoughts on keeping one's weight up through cancer--it would be much appreciated.

In strength and solidarity,


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Maurice was told to eat whatever he could, whenever he could. Just keep up the calories any way you can. Forget about well balanced meals, just get as many calories in as possible. During the last 3 months, which has been tough, he mostly lived on oatmeal cookies, occasional mac/cheese & I would make milkshakes from Carnation Instant Breakfast. Use half & half instead of regular milk, add a good dollop of ice cream into the blender & presto, milkshake. He wouldn't drink Ensure or Boost but would drink the milkshakes. Good Luck & God Bless


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That sounds like positive news. Not losing weight is good, but gaining it back is really good. My dad has a muscle disease that he is prescribed prednisone for. He went off (on his own) about a year before he was diagnosed. He lost about 70 lbs. in that time frame. The doctor said that was normal for someone coming off the medication. Now, we wonder how much of it was from the cancer. He since has gone back on it and each week has gained more weight. It seems he's hungry all the time. His pulmonologist did suggest additional dairy. He said to do the ensure / boost milkshake. He said if he eats eggs, put cheese in them. If he eats apple pie, put a big scoop of ice cream on it. He also said for him not to have coffee until after he ate his breakfast because that would tend to make him feel full. Anyway, I just wanted to share that. I also want you to know that I'm praying, after you get pass this stressful wait, that you have great results. Hang in there.

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