Nutrition & CancerStress Management

Lifestyle Changes to Go with Your Cancer Treatment

Maintaining a healthy lifestyle is important while undergoing cancer treatment.
Web Exclusives – January 9, 2019
John Parkinson

In the middle of a battle with cancer, it's beneficial to try to maintain a healthy lifestyle. Depending on where you are in your treatment, you may want to consider making these healthy options a part of your routine.

Reconfigure Your Expectations.

During your treatment period, if you miss an engagement or something you had previously scheduled, try not to assign too much emotion to it. Acknowledge your disappointment and anger, but do not dwell on the fact that you cannot make it to an event. Find things to look forward to. Think about how you will feel after you finish treatment.

Read "Don't Allow Cancer Derail Your Future"

Immune System Boosting Foods

While you are dealing with the effects of treatment, it can help to use "food as medicine" to quiet the inflammation your body is going through.

See a Dietitian

It may also help to seek professional medical advice and see a registered dietitian (RD) if you are unsure of what to eat. An RD can suggest some ways to stay nourished, especially if you are dealing with nausea and overwhelming fatigue, and sleeping instead of eating. An RD can also help you create a daily meal plan.


If you have the strength and energy, yoga can be a good way to get some physical exercise and to experience mindfulness, or the practice of being in the moment. Yoga can help alleviate the sense of feeling overwhelmed, and may provide a calming and positive effect.

Read "Yoga and Cancer: The Healing Power of Yoga"

Stay Connected

Laughing and remaining socially active have been found to be good medicine for people with cancer. When possible, engage with family and friends, and stay connected to people to seek out good times and continue friendships. This can help you focus on something other than cancer.

Share Your Story

Whether through connecting with others in a cancer support group, seeking out a counselor for one-on-one sessions, writing about your experience, or sharing your cancer journey in a video, getting some perspective and voicing your emotions can be restorative.


This is the paramount issue to address. During treatment, you will likely feel the side effects of chemo and radiation, such as nausea and fatigue, and the need for rest may be constant. Allow yourself this time to sleep, and take it easy as your body adjusts to treatment.

What changes did you make to your lifestyle during cancer treatment? Share your story with CONQUER!

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Last modified: January 14, 2019

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