Dietary Suggestions

…for eating well on the day of  treatment and the day after.

Before treatment

We suggest  that you eat before receiving chemotherapy. No fried or greasy foods. If you have a late morning or afternoon appointment, eat a snack before your appointment. Otherwise, eat a regular breakfast or lunch.

Prevention of nausea

After receiving treatment we have found our patients have less nausea if they are not hungry. You may need a mid morning and mid afternoon snack to prevent nausea. You should eat a bedtime snack for 2-3 days after chemotherapy. Suggested snacks are starchy/bland: pretzels, crackers, toast, English muffins, bagels, vanilla wafers, animal crackers or popcorn that is not greasy.

Morning after

For 2-3 days after the chemotherapy you should take your medications with food unless specifically told to take on an empty stomach. Drink fluids with your breakfast, not before.

Eating if you are nauseated

The above starchy, bland foods would also be good choice if you are nauseated.
Eat small amounts with sips of clear liquids and increase amounts slowly.


Foods to avoid the day of treatment and the day after

Fatty, greasy or fried food • Red meats – tend to have a bitter taste
Spicy foods – hard to digest • Foods with strong odors especially if you are cooking.

Foods & clear fluids that are generally easy to digest

(but are only a short list of possibilities)

Toast or crackers


Animal crackers





Macaroni and cheese

Baked fish

Skinned chicken (baked or broiled)

Fruits and vegetables that are soft or bland,
such as canned peaches, pears

Beverages sipped slowly between meals

Angel food cake

English muffins

Pound cake





White grape juice

Soft drinks

Crushed ice

Chicken soup

Clear broth



Apple juice


Ice Pops

Cranberry juice (or combinations)

Chicken soup

Clear broth


You should consult with the dietitian at any hospital if you are using alternative therapies including high doses of vitamins or minerals, herbal preparations or changing your diet. They will evaluate the safety of these therapies with your chemotherapy.

Diarrhea (longer than 12 hours)

Try Kaopectate or Imodium A-D (lopermide) tablets. Please call if the diarrhea continues after another 24 hours, especially if associated with abdominal pain or cramps.

Medications to avoid

Avoid aspirin and ibuprofen (such as Motrin, Advil) because the medications affect your platelets as does chemotherapy. Platelets are cells in your blood involved in your blood clotting.

Mouth care guidelines

Mouth care is very important while you are getting treatment. Sensitive tissues in you mouth may become irritated during treatment. Keep your lips moist with something like lipstick, Chapstick, Vaseline, or Blistex. Use a soft toothbrush only, and any commercial toothpaste or denture cleanser is fine. Do Not use commercial mouth wash. 

If you develop mouth soreness

For mouth soreness swish and gargle with baking soda mouthwash (mis 1/2 cup warm water with 1/2 teaspoon baking soda) after meals and at bedtime. If your mouth soreness increases, call your physician for additional instructions, especially if the soreness interferes with your eating or drinking.

Call the office within 24 hours

if you experience any of the following problems

Signs and symptoms of infection including fever greater than 100.5 F,
shaking chills, burning on urination or cough productive of dark mucus.

Please have a thermometer available that you can read.

Vomiting that doesn’t stop with the medicine we have ordered for nausea.

Your platelets may be low if you notice any unexplained bruising or bleeding

Severe sudden headache, change in balance, or sudden change in vision

Any unusual physical symptoms that begin after chemotherapy

To refill your prescription of a medicine ordered by our office

Check on the medications you need and ask for refills during your visit with the doctor

If refills are needed between visits, please call 24 hours in advance. You can pick up written prescriptions the next day or they can be mailed to you.