A plate sits on a table with a sandwich with one bite taken out of it, while a pair of hands pushes the plate away

You Are What You Eat

It’s been said that you are what you eat and if that saying is true then I must be little or nothing. There are days when I can eat breakfast, lunch, and dinner, and then there are days that I can eat a bag of popcorn and be perfectly content.

Nausea

There are days when I can smell food and can’t wait to eat, while there are other days when the smell of food makes me sick to my stomach. Sometimes I can eat something spicy and at other times I can barely tolerate black pepper.

The same can be said for sugar. There are days when I can eat sugar by the spoonfuls and other days where the taste of sugar makes me nauseous. My quest now is to find a happy medium with my tastebuds. How can I enjoy food consistently again, or is that a thing of the past?

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My latest thing has been plums, grapes, and cereal. While this may seem no big deal to others, it’s a major deal for cancer patients. The lack of nutrients may land us in the hospital.

Lack of appetite

My doctor texts me every day asking what I ate. I know she’s concerned; however, that question can be very annoying when you’re asked several times a day.

My lack of appetite has caused me to stop watching one of my favorite networks. I used to binge-watch several shows on the Food Network. Now when the app shows up I usually scroll past it or delete it from my iPad.

I’ve been asked if the lack of desire for food is my way of giving up or is there something wrong that I should check out by going to the doctor. I’m certainly not giving up, and I have no desire to keep going to the doctor. My calendar is full of doctor's appointments if I choose to be totally compliant.

Side effects of metastatic breast cancer

The thing that I wish metastatic breast cancer patients were told going into this dreadful journey is how our tastebuds are affected. I wish there were a magic breath mint that would cause my taste buds to enjoy my favorite flavors all the time. I wish that there was something that could be done to take that horrible metallic taste out of my mouth.

Along with food not tasting so wonderful, I’ve noticed that I have a horribly dry mouth. Going to bed without some liquid is out of the question. The problem is that more liquid leads to more bathroom visits. Holding it until you wake up causes a tsunami effect that no one wants to clean up, so off to the restroom I go, every hour it seems.

I’m trying to find a balance between eating, eating well, and eating for enjoyment. I find myself looking at food magazines in hopes that my mind will tell my tastebuds and my stomach that it’s a good thing to enjoy beautiful, seasoned-to-perfection foods.

I can’t wait for the day where I can enjoy my favorite foods again without my tastebuds and digestive track betraying me. But for now, I vow to eat something at least once a day.

What has been your experience with food while living with advanced breast cancer?

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