Easy Meals to Eat Before Chemotherapy Treatments

Aug 8 • 2014
Easy Meals to Eat Before Chemo

A well-balanced, nutritious diet is a very important part of every cancer patient’s treatment plan. Unfortunately, chemotherapy can alter a person’s appetite, making it difficult to maintain a healthy diet.

Cancer treatment and even the type of cancer can affect your appetite in various ways. Side effects include little to no appetite, inconsistency in food preference, sore mouth or throat, nausea and vomiting.

Eating a small meal before chemotherapy treatment has helped prevent some of the side effects listed above. Here are five suggestions for easy meals to eat before treatment:

  • Blueberry Banana Smoothie – Blend one banana, ½ cup blueberries, ¼-½ cup Greek yogurt, ½-1 cup of milk of your choice and ice. This smoothie is packed with protein and antioxidants.
  • Blueberry Health Muffins – This light, but filling snack has vitamins, protein, antioxidants and fiber. You can make a large batch ahead of time to keep in the freezer and defrost as needed.
  • Creamy Mac and Cheese – Nothing beats comfort food when you aren’t feeling your best, and this recipe from the American Cancer Society is a delicious meal the whole family can enjoy. It’s also good for patients who have experienced weight loss and mouth soreness.
  • White Winter Minestrone Soup – Chock-full of vegetables, this soup is packed with nutrients. The fiber from the vegetables and beans will keep you feeling full, even if you can’t eat a lot.
  • Quinoa Risotto Primavera – This light dish is easy to make and is loaded with vegetables and protein, despite the absence of meat. Quinoa is a superfood that adds protein and fiber.


Want more recipe ideas? Check out these additional protein shake and soup recipes from the American Cancer Society.

Talk with your health care team to ensure you’re meeting your nutritional needs during treatment. If the treatment is making your mouth or throat sore, inform your physician. There may be a medication to help soothe the discomfort enough so you can eat a small meal.


Recommended review by an oncologist