Categories: Side effects

How to decrease the side effects of chemotherapy

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Discover how to decrease the side effects of chemotherapy.

Chemotherapy is one of the treatments most widespread in the fight against cancer, but since it is a process by which powerful drugs chemicals enter our bloodstream to reduce cancer cells, side effects are often important. How to decrease the side effects of chemotherapy


For this reason, and to improve your quality of life, we give you some suggestions so that you can discover how to reduce the side effects of chemotherapy.

  1. When you undergo chemotherapy treatment, your doctor usually explains in detail all the implications and side effects of it. It is very possible that at that stage you will also be outlawed medication to control nausea and vomiting that is usually present in chemo.

However, beyond the medical options, some changes in your habits will help you reduce the side effects of chemotherapy and cope with the treatment with better readiness.

  1. To avoid episodes of nausea and vomiting, one of the most common side effects of chemotherapy, it is advisable to make some changes to our diet, for example:

Avoid foods that are difficult to digest, this way you will feel much lighter and minimize the possibility of stomach upset.

It’s good to cut down on your portion sizes and eat more meals a day. In this way, you will avoid nausea and discomfort and at the same time, you will keep your body nourished. You must choose healthy and light foods, for example, lean meats, fish, cooked vegetables, among others.

You must stay well hydrated, always trying to consume cold liquids, as these reduce the feeling of nausea. Drink small sips of cold liquid throughout the day. Sucking on ice will also help.

If you don’t want to eat, it is important to drink fruit juices or soups to keep yourself nourished. Also, given the lack of appetite, it is important to consult your doctor to consider the intake of vitamins that help you improve it.


After eating, try to rest, preferably sitting, to promote good digestion.

  1. Another side effect of chemotherapy is diarrhea, due to gastric disorders caused by the treatment. The previous recommendations can help you avoid it, but if it does manifest itself, it is important to follow these tips:

Make changes to your diet to help diarrhea pass. In our article how to eat when I have diarrhea you will find the appropriate recommendations regarding food.

Staying hydrated is essential to avoid weakness and dehydration. Water, liquid physiological saline, and isotonic drinks are ideal to combat this problem.

It is also important not to take any medication for diarrhea without first consulting your doctor, as it could interfere with chemotherapy or cause an unexpected reaction.

  1. The mucositis, an infection that occurs inside the mouth, throat, and stomach mucosa, and is manifested by sores, is one of the side effects of chemotherapy that can cause more discomfort to the patient. Therefore, if you are presenting with this condition, some tips can help you feel better:

Avoid or remove very salty foods from your diets, such as dehydrated products, pickles, or sausages, as they will increase the sensation of stinging and discomfort.


It is also advisable to avoid highly seasoned foods and citrus fruits, which will only excessively irritate the affected area.

Choose soft foods that are easy to chew and swallow. It is best to always consume them warm to avoid pain.

Again, cold liquids can help ease discomfort. Avoid hot drinks.


It is very important that if mucositis occurs at the wedding, you take maximum care of your oral hygiene. The use of mouthwash 3 or 4 times a day is recommended to avoid infections. In the same way, it is recommended to use toothpaste with a mild flavor to reduce irritation and a toothbrush with soft bristles.

  1. Because chemotherapy weakens the immune system, we are more likely to get infections. To avoid the spread of diseases or viruses that compromise our health, it is recommended that:

Wash your hands well daily, especially if you sneeze, after using the bathroom or before every meal.

If in your environment there are people with viruses or contagious diseases, it is advisable to limit contact and wear masks when they are close, in this way you prevent contagion.

If you suffer a cut or wound, it is essential that you disinfect it properly as soon as possible, washing it with warm water and neutral soap and then applying an antiseptic. Take good care of the wound to avoid infection. if its appearance worsens consult your doctor.

  1. Fatigue and anemia are two of the side effects of chemotherapy frequently. To reduce them it is important to:

•Get adequate rest, sleeping at least 8 hours a day. If this is not possible, you must try to take small naps throughout the day to help you regain your strength.

•As indicated in point 2, staying well-fed is essential, especially if you have anemia. A diet rich in foods with iron will help you improve your health and energy.

•Stress, depression, and anguish also significantly affect your state, making you feel tired, so even if it sounds contradictory, it is essential to stay active to improve your mental and physical state. Exercising daily such as walking, yoga, Pilates, meditation, cycling, or swimming will help you release endorphins, improve your mood, and reduce fatigue.

Let yourself help in your daily tasks, especially in housework, taking care of children, or any other task that requires a lot of energy. This is important to manage fatigue.

  1. Also remember that if your mood is very affected, you can go to support groups that will allow you to improve your mood and face this process more positively.

This article is merely informative, we do not have the power to prescribe any medical treatment or make any type of diagnosis.

We invite you to see a doctor in the case of presenting any type of condition or discomfort.


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