When and how to get appetite back?

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Question from VickieG: I have had breast cancer twice in two years and have had bilateral mastectomies, chemo, radiation and continue taking tamoxifen. I lost a lot of weight during chemo due to nausea and vomiting and now I continue to have an aversion to food. I have gained my weight back but I have to work at maintaining it and eating! When will this go away?
Answers - Cyndi Thomson, Ph.D., R.D. I am also a cancer survivor and at the time that I had surgery on my colon, I began to have a suppression in appetite and irregular bowel movements. Be patient — my symptoms lasted a year and a half, but eventually they did resolve. So give yourself time and continue to integrate activity into your lifestyle as it may enhance your appetite. In addition, there are several web sites that provide guidance or tips for improving appetite. The American Cancer Society has tips and many of the major cancer centers' web sites have tips. I know at the University of Arizona Cancer Center, our web site has a section called Nutrition Ways.
Marisa Weiss, M.D. Breastcancer.org also has information on maintaining weight.

The Ask-the-Expert Online Conference called Nutrition and Weight featured Cyndi Thomson, Ph.D., R.D. and Marisa Weiss M.D. answering your questions about nutrition and weight.

Editor's Note: This conference took place in January 2005.

The materials presented in these conferences do not necessarily reflect the views of Breastcancer.org. A qualified healthcare professional should be consulted before using any therapeutic product or regimen discussed. All readers should verify all information and data before employing any therapies described here.

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