Why Avoid Caffeine During Chemotherapy?


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Sarah Devine Profile
Sarah Devine answered
It is extremely important to avoid caffeine during chemotherapy because the severity of some chemotherapy side effects can be worsened by dehydrations and caffeine is one of the many things that can cause dehydration as it has a mild diuretic effect. A diuretic effect is one that increase the excretion of water from bodies and elevates the rate of urination. Diuretics can lead to the body excreting more liquids than it actually took in, therefore potentially leading to dehydration. Many people worry about caffeine leading to dehydration but there are not any medical studies that conclude that this actually happens. The average person, who drinks other fluids as well as caffeine-based drinks, should not have a problem. During chemotherapy, dehydration can be life threatening as it increases the toxicity of these therapies. Dehydration can contribute to fatigue, headaches and nausea as well. For all of these reasons, staying well hydrated is vital to good health, both during and after cancer care. Caffeine can have serious downsides in people who are more susceptible to its negative effects, such as the elderly; children and teens; those with high blood pressure, heart disease, and anxiety disorders and should be avoided altogether. It is recommended that chemotherapy patients also avoid caffeinated drinks because they should be drinking beverages with a higher calorie content. It is common for patients to lose massive amounts of weight during chemotherapy and to keep their weight up, particularly if they do not feel like eating, it is best to consume drinks such as juice, milk, smoothies and shakes rather than waste time with low-calorie caffeinated drinks. Other things that should be avoided for chemotherapy patients include spicy food, sweet, fatty or sugary foods. Large meals or eating too quickly is not recommended. Drinking plenty of fluids and lots of fruit and vegetables are vital and eating small meals, even if you do not feel like eating, is extremely important.
Sneha Pancholi Profile
Sneha Pancholi answered

For most types of cancer, coffee appears either to decrease risk of cancer, or to have no effect on cancer risk at all. Even in countries with very high intake of caffeine from coffee, such as Scandinavian countries, research does not support a link between coffee or caffeine and cancer risk.

The only exception may be lung cancer. For lung cancer, study results are conflicting. Some studies show a decreased risk of lung cancer among heavy coffee drinkers, while other studies show no risk, or a small increased risk with heavy coffee consumption.

And even so, many health experts believe that coffee itself doesn’t increase lung cancer risk. Rather, other health behaviors among heavy coffee drinkers are to blame. For example, if heavy coffee drinkers also are more likely to smoke, it might look like coffee is a culprit in causing lung cancer. In reality, it is the smoking among heavy coffee drinkers that is to blame, not the coffee.

The bottom line is that with coffee and caffeine, most health experts agree that these things do not increase cancer risk, and in some cases, may even decrease risk. But don’t forget that caffeine can negatively affect people with other health conditions. If you have high blood pressure, a rapid heart rate, or other heart-related issues, please talk to your doctor about how much caffeine is safe for you.

Also keep in mind that the source of caffeine matters. Drinking coffee and tea is a better choice than soda, as long as you are not having so much of these beverages that you experience negative side effects, such as insomnia or anxiety.

Coffee and tea contain antioxidants and other nutrients that are linked with better health. With soda, you get nothing of value for good health. You end up consuming excessive amounts of sugar or artificial sweeteners as well. Regardless of the caffeine content, it’s best to consider soda an occasional treat, not a daily habit.

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