Undergoing cancer treatment means taking on the challenges of the treatment’s side effects. These treatments affect your body cells replicating the fastest. Among these cells are those in the lining of the gastrointestinal tract. These cell changes lead to changes in your taste and smell, affecting your appetite and ability to eat or enjoy certain foods. Even foods you adore may become unappealing to you during treatment. You may suffer the confusing changes in your taste, with many foods tasting bland, metallic or bitter.
There are some methods of dealing with your changing taste during cancer treatment.
One such method is to rinse with a baking soda rinse before and after your meals. You simply swish the solution around in your mouth, around teeth and gums, then spitting the solution out. The recipe for a baking soda rinse is:
Simply refrigerate this solution in a sealed container and use it over the course of several days. You only need to rinse about one to two ounces of this solution before each meal. Remember, you do not swallow this solution.
Other methods of dealing with taste changes during cancer treatment include:
Many cancer treatment patients complain of their food tasting like cardboard or lacking taste altogether. When this happens and you do not have mouth sores, season your food differently. Use tart flavors like lemon, vinegar, citrus or pickled foods.
Avoid using metal utensils when preparing or eating your foods. Use plastic utensils and add extra flavor to your foods, unless you have mouth sores. Helpful flavorings include onion, garlic, chili powder, mint, ketchup, mustard, basil, oregano, rosemary, tarragon and barbecue sauce. Also avoid hot foods and eat room temperature meals. Also try using sugar-free lemon drops, gum or mints to help with a metallic taste in your mouth.
Using sugar, maple syrup or honey helps balance food that tastes salty, bitter or sour. To balance sweet tasting foods, add six drops of lime or lemon juice at a time until the food no longer tastes too sweet.
Anytime you suffer side effects, dietary problems or taste changes during cancer treatment, talk openly with your doctor or dietician. Finding the right solutions helps you keep your weight and diet in healthy ranges for your best possible cancer recovery.