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Chemotherapy Support 101: Well Rounded Recovery From Chemotherapy Treatment

Simple Strategies To Support Your Recovery From Chemotherapy

The road to recovery from chemotherapy treatments is long, it requires both patience and persistence. There's no shortcut or magic remedy to alleviate the hardships, but there are proven strategies that can bring ease to the journey. 

As a survivor and naturopathic endocrinologist, I’ve cultivated a program  that equips women with the knowledge and natural therapies needed to tolerate chemo and improve how effective it is  - this program is designed for women who are about to begin, are in the trenches of, or have just finished chemotherapy treatment. 

In this blog, I’d like to share with you some central concepts that the course explores in depth so that you can gauge whether it’s a good fit for you. I have used them effectively with my own patients and in my own experience with chemo, and they can help you feel better, faster. 

Recovery From Chemotherapy In Nature

1. Self-Care Is Non-Negotiable

When facing the challenges of chemotherapy, self-care transforms from a luxury to an absolute necessity. It's the foundation that we’ll build your recovery program on, encompassing not just the physical aspects of your well-being but the mental and emotional facets of your journey. 

First and foremost, make sleep a priority. Eight to ten (8 - 10) hours of rest every night is crucial for your body to repair itself. If you’re struggling with your sleep, let’s schedule a call - this is one of my favorite topics to educate fellow survivors on as it makes a world of difference in the recovery process. 

Incorporating physical activities that bring you joy, like walking, hiking, yoga, or swimming will significantly boost your mood and energy levels. Remember, self-care isn't selfish; it's your armor in this battle, aiding in quicker recovery and enhancing the efficacy of your treatment.

2. Your Support System Will Give You Strength

The path of chemotherapy can be a lonely one - luckily, breast cancer support groups such as ours provide survivors with a network of women navigating similar terrain. Alongside the irreplaceable care from friends and family, the immense value of integrating healthcare practitioners who specialize in complementary care can not be understated. I am always happy to help you navigate your journey, and I encourage you to find bodyworkers, like acupuncturists and massage therapists into your care circle to optimize your physical wellness during this challenging time. These professionals are important allies to have in your corner, providing targeted support in line with your body's specific needs.

3. Nourishment for Your Body

Understanding the role of nutrition in your chemotherapy journey can profoundly influence your treatment's efficacy and your overall well-being. Adjusting your diet to include light, frequent meals not only helps in managing side effects but also plays a crucial role in sustaining your energy levels.

In the online program, we delve deep into how you can tailor your diet for the days around your infusions to keep you feeling well, and safeguarding your healthy cells  while you bolster the chemotherapy's effectiveness. I provide easy, palatable recipes to keep you nourished without a lot of fuss, as well as offer strategies to minimize side effects such as mouth sores, heartburn and diarrhea. 

4. Targeted Supplements Before, During, And After Treatment

Incorporating supplements into your recovery plan can provide a much-needed boost to your body's resilience. It is important though, to consult with a specialist in natural cancer support as well as your oncologist to make sure you are making the right choices for your treatment plan.  With that said, some of the more common supplements I use can include: 

  • Fish oil – This can significantly reduce inflammation and help with hot flashes from hormonal changes. Also, diets high in omega 3 fats are associated with a significant reduction in recurrence. 

  • Ashwagandha– This can  help with anxiety and insomnia that are common during treatment, both due to stress as well as the steroids (dexamethasone) used in your chemotherapy infusion. This is also associated with a reduced risk of cancer recurrence

  • L-Glutamine–this is the primary food source for the digestive tract, and can soothe mouth sores and heartburn.  It also can help prevent neuropathy from chemo drugs. 

Now, you might be wondering…Can I use supplements during breast cancer treatment? Check out this other blog post of mine to help clarify that concern more fully. In short - while I’ve seen these supplements bring dramatic benefit to many women in my community, you should always consult with a natural healthcare provider who specializes in cancer treatment as well as your oncologist  before introducing supplements into your regimen. 

With Deeper Understanding Comes More Ease. 

We've touched on essential aspects of chemotherapy recovery, highlighting the importance of holistic care. But, this is just the tip of the iceberg. If you're seeking to build upon these foundations and truly optimize your recovery, the "Tolerate and Improve Chemotherapy Efficacy" program is designed to support you every step of the way.  Feel free to check it out!

This program is more than just an online course; it's an invaluable resource to our growing community of breast cancer survivors.  By equipping yourself with more knowledge, you can confront the challenges of chemotherapy with more courage. While this course caters to the chemotherapy stage of treatment, I also offer courses that focus on surgery and total post-treatment recovery

Each of these programs is packed with information tailored to the particular stage in the breast cancer journey, and I’d love to talk with you about which would be most beneficial for you. If you have questions about the chemotherapy course, or any of my offerings, let’s book a call to find some clarity.

Here’s to our good health!

Dr Kaycie Grigel

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