Nausea and vomiting can be caused both by the location of the tumor, as well as by the pharmacological treatments to which patients are subjected, but also by possible infections, psychological factors and emotional state. If these are not properly managed, they can cause weight loss, dehydration, metabolic problems and electrolyte imbalance.
Nausea is a sensation of discomfort and clutter at the level of the stomach, accompanied at times by dizziness, cold sweat and abundant salivation, which can be followed by vomiting.
Vomiting is the rapid and forced emission from the mouth, through the esophagus and pharynx, of the contents of the stomach and exceptionally of the intestine (foods or other ingested substances, gastric juices, mucus, blood).
Oncologists prescribe special medications to fight nausea and vomiting. In addition, it may also be helpful to follow some dietary advice to relieve symptoms. Nutrition can be a good strategy to limit the perception of these unpleasant effects.
- Make small and frequent meals: split meals into 5-6 snacks so that the stomach never stays empty, and chew food slowly
- It is preferable to have someone prepare your meals,or you can prepare meals, freeze them and then heat them on days when you do not feel well
- Avoid foods with strong smells such as garlic, onions, peppers, horseradish, broccoli, cabbage, etc.
- Avoid sweets, fried foods, fatty foods and very tasty/spicy foods
- Avoid alcoholic and beverages that contain theine or caffeine
- Prefer cold or room-temperature foods (they smell less than hot foods)
- Choose salty and dry foods, with a high content of easy-to-digest carbohydrates (pasta, bread, breadsticks, crackers or better still rice cakes)
- It can be useful to chew a brown rice cake, better if salted. Alternatively, you can add a tip of a teaspoon of miso (fermented seasoning rich in protein and vital enzymes, consisting of yellow soy, salt, rice or barley)
- You can get help from ginger(without exceeding in quantities): you can sip a ginger herbal tea, eat candied ginger, or add to the preparations the fresh chopped root or dried ginger. However, if you have problems with inflammation at the level of the oral cord, the use of ginger is not recommended
- When you have nausea, initially it is useful to eat only light foods such as soups or cream puddings and gradually add small portions of your favorite dishes
- Drink plenty of water throughout the day, and not only during meals making small sips. Also drink tea (mint for example), fruit juices and herbal teas