Fasting Could Help Patients Get Through Chemo

May 22, 2008 10:02 AM
by findingDulcinea Staff
Is it possible to treat chemotherapy’s sometimes devastating side effects with fasting instead of medication? A study on mice suggests it is.

30-Second Summary

As well as suffering from fewer side effects, the mice in the study were able to endure higher chemotherapy doses.

Valter Longo, the study’s leader, told AFP, “We’re exploiting the ability of every organism that's ever been tested to go into this starvation response mode which is usually associated, counterintuitively, with the high resistance to almost anything you throw at them.”

A related question that scientists are exploring is whether people, like some animals, can live longer on less food.

When people undergo cancer treatment, they are urged to eat very different diets. Health experts suggest eating more proteins and fats and less fiber. 

Although death rates from cancer have risen along with life expectancy since industrialization, the prognosis of those diagnosed with the disease is improving almost every day. A findingDulcinea Web guide helps people learn about cancer, its treatment options, and how to cope during treatment and as a survivor.

Headline Link: ‘Fasting Protects Mice from Chemo Side Effects’

Video: 'Starving Cancer'

Related Topic: Fasting and a longer life

Reference: Nutrition during cancer treatment, cancer


Most Recent Beyond The Headlines