Chemotherapy is scary, but it doesn’t mean all hope is lost. The battle isn’t over yet – it’s just getting started! The way you treat your body during chemotherapy makes a lot of difference. If you’re dealing with the nasty side effects of chemotherapy, avoid prescription medications when possible. It usually, lead to an endless cycle of side effects. Instead, try these natural ways of handling chemotherapy instead of popping another pill.
7 Natural Remedies
It’s normal to feel fatigued and sluggish after chemotherapy. Acupuncture can improve these symptoms while reducing hot flashes and depression. This traditional Chinese practice works just as well as venlafaxine, the antidepressant that’s usually prescribed for those symptoms.
But unlike venlafaxine, acupuncture doesn’t cause any side effects like dizziness and nausea. The relief also lasts longer, helping create a better sense of well-being.1
2. Massage Therapy
Nausea is another common side effect but can be soothed with massage therapy. This natural treatment releases neurotransmitters that promote relaxation and decreases nausea. It can also provide overall relief from the mental stress of chemotherapy.2
Ginger has always been known to ease nausea. When paired along with nausea medicine, ginger can greatly reduce the symptoms from chemo – vomiting and retching. The difference can be felt most when consumed within 6 to 24 hours of chemotherapy and doesn’t cause other side effects.3
Chemotherapy can shake up the bacterial balance of the intestine, causing diarrhea. This can be naturally relieved with the good bacteria found in probiotics. Once the balance is restored, normal function can continue. Probiotics will also limit the frequency of stomach aches and discomfort that comes with diarrhea.4
5. Baking Soda
Sometimes, chemotherapy can lead to painful mouth sores. Even chronic stress from dealing with cancer can cause them. However, a homemade mouthwash of 1 teaspoon baking soda and 2 cups water can naturally ease the pain. You can also add salt for even more relief.5
High-fiber foods can be a remedy for constipation after chemotherapy. These include fruits, veggies, nuts, and whole-grain bread and cereals. Prunes are especially great for promoting healthy, regular bowel movements. But don’t consume too much fiber all at once! Check with your doctor to see how much you should start with.6
The simple act of exercise can boost your energy levels and ease nausea. It can also strengthen your immunity, helping your body recover. Of course, be sure to check with your doctor. Chemotherapy can make you prone to injuries, stressing the importance of gentler exercise.7
Following natural remedies for chemotherapy will only help the road to recovery faster. The natural remedies are gentle as well as powerful. The better you treat your body, you can fight it back!
|↑1||Walker, Eleanor M., Alba I. Rodriguez, Beth Kohn, Ronald M. Ball, Jan Pegg, Jeffrey R. Pocock, Ramon Nunez, Ed Peterson, Susan Jakary, and Robert A. Levine. Acupuncture versus venlafaxine for the management of vasomotor symptoms in patients with hormone receptor–positive breast cancer: A randomized controlled trial., Journal of Clinical Oncology 28, no. 4 (2010): 634-640.|
|↑2||Billhult, Annika, Ingegerd Bergbom, and Elisabet Stener-Victorin. Massage Relieves Nausea in Women with Breast Cancer Who Are Undergoing ChemotherapyThe Journal of Alternative and Complementary Medicine 13.1(2007): 53-57|
|↑3||Breast Cancer Org. Ginger May Help Ease Nausea Immediately After Chemotherapy|
|↑4||Österlund, P., T. Ruotsalainen, R. Korpela, M. Saxelin, A. Ollus, P. Valta, M. Kouri, I. Elomaa, and H. Joensuu. “Lactobacillus supplementation for diarrhoea related to chemotherapy of colorectal cancer: a randomised study.British Journal of Cancer 97, no. 8 (2007): 1028-1034.|
|↑5||American Cancer Society.Caring for the Patient With Cancer at Home|
|↑6||Cancer.gov.Managing Chemotherapy side effects|
|↑7||Breast Cancer Org. Exercise During and After Chemotherapy or Targeted Therapies|