Should I take any vitamins, herbs, or follow a special diet to help my body better cope with the chemotherapy treatments for breast cancer?

Question: Should I take any vitamins, herbs, or follow a special diet to help my body better cope with the chemotherapy treatments for breast cancer?

Answer: The hope that vitamins, herbs, and special diets would play a role in treating or curing or preventing breast cancer has been long-standing. Prospective studies have not demonstrated very consistent results. A low-fat diet, which is associated with a low calorie intake, has been associated with improved outcome in some kinds of breast cancer, and frankly, is a good diet for almost all Americans to follow, so we can certainly endorse that. On the topic of herbs and vitamins, there have not been any good studies that have clearly shown a benefit to most of these, and therefore we advise patients not to take any during active therapy and to always discuss any that you would consider taking with your doctor.

Next: What is Herceptin and how does the onocologist decide when and if to use it? What are its potential side effects versus benefits?

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