Undergoing chemotherapy for breast cancer is grueling on the body because of the side effects with medication slowing down the metabolism. October is breast cancer awareness month and sheds light on more than 252,710 women diagnosed annually. In truth, there aren’t just one or two types, but a surprising 10 types of breast cancer.
Chemotherapy & Breast Cancer Treatments
The first type of treatment is local treatment, which means that the cancerous tumor is treated without affecting the rest of the body. There are two types of local treatments: surgery and radiation therapy.
According to the American Cancer Society, surgery requires removing as much of the cancer as possible. Women often have either breast-conserving surgery or a mastectomy with the option of breast reconstructive surgery. Meanwhile, radiation therapy requires either external or internal radiation.
Chemotherapy, hormone, and targeted therapy are all types of drug therapies. They are systematic because they target cancer cells anywhere in the body.
Breast Cancer Treatment & Weight Gain
Essentially, women undertaking chemotherapy due to breast cancer will gain approximately five to eight pounds. In some cases women undergoing breast cancer treatment can gain up to 14 to 25 pounds in a year. This is due to the fact that, chemotherapy treatments often cause fatigue, nausea, and pain. With all of the side effects of chemotherapy, it is no wonder that many women find themselves without much energy or motivation to exercise. When the motivation is there, the nausea and chronic fatigue associated with hormone treatment compound things.
Corticosteroids are another medication that boosts your appetite. According to the cancer network:
“Corticosteroids are commonly used in the treatment of patients with advanced cancer. However, much of this use stems from the experience of practitioners rather than from data collected in controlled clinical trials.”
Though, corticosteroids are commonly known for increasing the appetite, which leads to weight gain in cancer patients.
Recipe For Weight Loss: Chemotherapy Patients & Breast Cancer Survivors
Weight gain is a big issue when undergoing chemotherapy for breast cancer. It can lead to additional body image insecurities as the disease is alread attacking the breasts. Many hormonal treatments and medication increase appetite, as well as craving comfort foods such as starches and carbs like pasta, rice, bread, and mashed potatoes. Consuming too much of these starches and carbs will rapidly lead to extra weight gain.
Also, chemo patients retain fluid, which leads to weight gain. Here are tips to follow to avoid water retention:
- Keep feet elevated as much as possible
- Stand for shorter periods of time
- Wear loose fitting clothes
- Avoid sitting with your legs crossed
- Lower salt intake
- Track daily weight
Why Exercise For Chemotherapy Patients & Breast Cancer Survivors Matters
According to the breast cancer care site, there are many benefits of physical activity after diagnosis. For one, exercise in conjunction with any necessary physical therapy helps to improve range of motion. Even moderate aerobic exercises such as walking for 30 minutes a day, 3 to 4 days a week improves how you feel. Physical fitness post-surgery helps to improve sense of control, self-image and upper body strength. Exercise equally helps your mental health by reducing instances of anxiety, depression and insomnia. Regular fitness after major surgery and therapy increases energy and reduces chances of weight gain.
- Replacing simple carbs and unnecessary starches with complex carbs like vegetables plus lean protein or meat is a recipe for weight loss.
- Get regular exercise by tracking it via fitness trackers that help you count your daily steps. Fitness trackers help with motivation because it’s a visual reminder of how much exercise you’re getting during the day and how many calories you’ve burned.
- Join a supportive weight loss group in conjunction with other supportive breast cancer survivor groups.
Recover From Illness + Lose Weight With 310 Nutrition
The best way to lose weight during chemotherapy is to join community Facebook groups that encourage your good health and weight loss journey. 310 Nutrition Community is a Facebook group with more than 176,000 members struggling with weight and health issues, include breast cancer survivors.
Many women have recovered from illness and other setbacks by using 310 Nutrition products plus the 310 Facebook Community to get back into shape. Maria Shelton was immobile after a serious accident that injured her shoulder and hip. She discovered 310 Nutrition and lost 36 pounds.
Likewise, breast cancer survivors have uncovered the benefits of healthy nutrition supplements that 310 Nutrition offers. Janet Valdes is a 2-time breast cancer survivor, first diagnosed in 1998 when her daughter was just 6 months old! Not every cancer patient ends up needing chemotherapy, especially if doctors can catch it early. Valdes would receive 36 rounds of radiation treatments the first time. Then, just four years ago, breast cancer would return for a second round. Luckily, doctors caught Janet’s cancer in the early stages both times. In discovering 310 Nutrition and the 310 Nutrition Facebook community, Janet now uses 310 meal replacement shakes in conjunction with healthier eating habits and walks 3 miles a day to lose weight. In 11 weeks, Janet Valdes is now 18 pounds lighter, halfway to her weight loss goal.
Breast Cancer & Moral Support
Breast cancer is a devastating disease with rounds of chemotherapy and cancer treatments that can take a toll. However, being in a supportive community makes all the difference when it comes to recovery.
With the right support, nutrition, and guidance weight loss is possible. Join our 310 Nutrition Community today and get encouraged to lose the pounds you’ve been hoping to shed. 310 Nutrition is also offering 40% off of our lifestyle starter kit and 40% off of our lifestyle premium kit and receive a pink shaker cup for free with all orders.