Feeling good about food – nutrition and cancer

Cancer Council NSW

Feeling good about food – nutrition and cancer

Having cancer and cancer treatment can affect the way you eat, what you eat and how you eat. You may experience side effects from treatment, like appetite loss and changes in taste and smell, or simply feel too fatigued to think about preparing food. While this can make it challenging to eat well, there are ways to manage changes to the way you eat. Eating well is important for health and wellbeing, and to help you prepare for treatment and recovery.


Cancer Council has a range of information resources that include tips for managing dietary changes, simple healthy recipe ideas, and guidelines for healthy eating. Check out:


  • Nutrition and cancer – for information on the importance of eating well, treatment side effects and ways to manage them; recipe and snack ideas, and information for carers on preparing meals
  • Appetite Loss and Nausea podcast episode – for ways to ensure your body is well nourished throughout cancer treatment
  • Taste and smell changes – for information on how your senses can be affected and tips to manage any changes
  • Mouth health and cancer treatment – for information on mouth care before and during treatment
New Contributor

Re: Feeling good about food – nutrition and cancer

The only treatment I have had, so far, is Bendamustine and Rituximab.  I finished July 2019.
I was told that my sense of taste should be back to normal roughly a few months after completion of Chemo.
Well, it is still not normal. I remember the very first time I had chemo and I could 'taste' the infusion going in. It tasted exactly like the smell of hand sanitiser. I call it the chemo taste. And my smell changed and many things smelt like the chemo. I cannot go anywhere near any types of mustard. It is completely overwhelming with chemo taste. Same with the smell of it.

There are other products I cannot eat because they smell/taste like chemo. It is as bad as the very first day of chemo.


Will it ever end? It is so frustrating. Things I used to enjoy, I no longer do 😞

0 Kudos
Post new topic
Talk to a health professional
Cancer Council support and information 13 11 20Mon - Fri 9am - 5pm
Cancer Information and Support

Online resources and support

Access information about support services, online resources and a range of other materials.

Caring for someone with cancer?

Find out what resources and support services are available to assist you.