I am sorry you are going through this.
I finished herceptin and perjeta in August 2021. Six rounds of TCHP and one year of herceptin perjeta + bilateral mastectomy took a toll on me and I ended up gaining 50 lbs during my treatment. I was always very fit and worked out everyday pre cancer. The first three months after my treatment ended were extremely hard on me and I also got some rare side effects.
I was in the same boat as you are, feeling depressed and nothing was working.
but since December 2021 I started intermittent fasting along with exercising and stopped eating added sugar/ refined carbs/ red meat. I follow plant based diet mostly.
I also was able to increase the intensity of my fitness regime which includes Pilates, yoga and Trx. I walk 5-8 miles on most days.
I have lost 32 lbs in three months and feel much better. I still have some very off days and need physical therapy, acupuncture and lymphatic drainage massage to help with lingering side effects. But there is light at the end of the tunnel. I hope this helps and wishing you the very best.
Same here, staying off sugar (and carbs) is the key I think, I was very tolerant of it previously but now it really sends my body out of balance. Like you say though, sometimes something sweet is the only answer! I now try to snack only at weekends, even biscuits, and make sure my meals are small but packed with good ingredients, so less carbs. It's difficult to get the balance right. I feel full really quickly these days.
I am now aware that there are several types of neuropathy, and to me (as a lay person) it seems possible that chemo could cause any of them, not just peripheral. Autonomic affects automatic function, like the action of digestion and bowels, bladder, sweating, eyesight, all sorts. I used to have high blood pressure and now it is normal, that was the main flag for me that chemo had done something else to my body. It wasn't picked up because it was normal, even though I warned everyone who came near me with a cuff that mine was on the high side. I just feel this needs more research so that ladies who, say, have night sweats and think it's menopause, when it might be something else, something that might be treated differently.
I would agree with your description of how your body has changed. I find that I can’t eat bread or potatoes- even crisps, as I become very bloated. And if I am being honest, the only way to keep my weight stable is not to eat sugar, but as I said in my previous posting, sometimes I crave chocolate. It’s interesting to hear about the autonomic neuropathy, I will do some research into it. It is a hard slog trying to keep on top of one’s fitness but we ladies have been through worse challenges!!! Take care and try to stay motivated
I think I posted further down on this post about gaining a stone when I have always been slim. I have lost all but a pound or two of the gained weight now, three years after starting treatment. However, my fitness levels are dreadful, but my food tastes have changed. I have bloating and slow digestion still (I found out about something called autonomic neuropathy which causes this), and due to that my body shape is different - I'm much thicker around the middle, so really can't tolerate stodgy foods too much. Sometimes I struggle to finish a cake, that was unheard of a few years ago! I have had to switch from bread to wraps for sandwich type lunches, and tend to steer away from too much grease as it turns my stomach.
It's a hard slog trying to get fit again after chemo!
sorry to hear that you are struggling with your weight after Herceptin. It has been 2 years this Month since I started on chemo and Herceptin. It hasn’t been easy and it’s still not, if I’m honest. I have had to be realistic and have come to the conclusion that I will never be the same weight or fitness level as before. In the summer months it was easier to live on salads and take long walks but in the colder months I don’t feel like it so much. Sometimes I want to persevere and other times I want to eat junk and lounge about! It depends on how determined you are. I have set myself a limit on how heavy I think is acceptable for my height and if I creep up towards it I cut out the chocolate and cake and do a few Joe Wickes HIIT sessions. Some days However, only a large bar of Cadbury’s Dairy Milk will do and I am starting to accept that. I hope you can find your happy place and that you will begin to feel better soon
I also had 15 months of Herceptin & Perjeta which finished February 2021..My weight also became a problem & with being on letrezol my movement was so limited, due to the Musculo-skeletal pain caused..
I'm trying so hard to lose the weight by walking & i don't know how easy it is to lose the weight.
Hope you get some answers, take care.
I wAs just wondering since these posts were dated last year, if anyone can advise if they have seen an improvement in their weight issues.
im due to finish my herceptin next month after 12 months of injections and have also put on a ton of weight. I feel hideous and depressed that my clothes or work uniform doesn’t fit. Will I ever lose the weight?
I exercise 5-6 days a week as well as walk to work, and swim 2-3 times a week.
any advice would be great.
We have all been through a lot, but there will be a light at the end of the tunnel, keep busy, eat well and look after each other and most importantly, look after yourself. Here’s to a brighter 2021,
love and care to you all xxx
your body has been through a lot! As we all know there’s nothing about this experience that anyone would say ohhh that was fun! But you and I and the rest of us can do it. We can one hour, day at a time! Find what brings you joy and focus on those things to get you through the other crap!
As far as the munchies . I have found a way to control this is making sure you have enough protein in your diet! It curbs the hunger feeling and eating something small / light “healthy” every 2-3hrs rather then breakfast , lunch , supper
You are so right, how unfortunate for us to be going through cancer treatment, lockdown & the threat of covid.
I haven't done so much colouring in, in my adult life!! Podcasts on the bad days to lift my spirits.
Let's hope 2021 will be kinder, take care xx
please be assured you are NOT the only one to have gained weight on Herceptin. I do think we are doubly unfortunate to be living with cancer during Covid, and I do believe it has seriously impacted on my mental health and my ability to cope with the difficult days. Keep on being positive, you are right this won’t last forever and hopefully you will feel a bit more like your old self soon.
sending big hugs to all you Herceptin ladies out there xxx
Hello, it's reassuring to read I'm not the only one who has gained weight!!
I'm battling with the munchies, I try so hard not to, as I know the sugar hit is not going to help my energy levels!!
I'm telling myself that this is temporary & I will get back to spinning, one day..
Keep safe, x
I am so pleased you posted here re your Herceptin weight gain, lots of us in the same position and able to compare notes and support each other with our experiences. I haven’t met anyone in person who didn’t loose weight so I get the frustration of feeling like I am the only one, that’s one of the benefits of these posts! Keep posting and letting us know how you are doing, we all need encouragement and inspiration from time to time lol 😂 x
I Can completely Identity with your comments re weight gain, especially the part about getting the “munchies”. It can be difficult to remember that it’s not hunger giving you the cravings and if you can see past that you are doing well. As long as you are eating a “healthy” diet, you don’t need any extra temptations (although it is nice and comforting to give in occasionally). I found it very difficult to “get the ball rolling”, so to speak, but once the scales started going in the direction I wanted, that was motivation in itself and it was easier not to give in to The sweet cravings. I have two more Herceptin sessions and am hopeful that when they are over, it will be easier to sustain a weight I am happier with. I can’t see myself ever being the size I was before treatment, as you say, your body changes in many different ways, but I am finding clothes that I can zip up again so that’s a big positive!!! Well done for getting to where you are, and for being accepting of the “new you”, good luck to anyone who is in this situation, don’t give up, you will get there if you really want to xxx
@holeinone ThankYou so much for the truth and encouragement 🙏🏻 When you were on herceptin did it cause water retention? I’m assuming that could be part of it as well but definitely I’ve gained weight from chemo.
also I think for me my side effects after chemo has been early menopause so cravings are at a high but I’ve controlled that!
I’m sure I will get back to pre chemo weight but the struggle is real and I felt like I was going mad when others didn’t experience the same. Most said they were to sick during chemo n lost weight. Neither is good.
I wish you the best on your future ahead xx
Thought I would tell you what happened with my weight during chemo and Herceptin, as we sound similar. I finished chemo in February 2019 and Herceptin February 2020.
I've always been on the lower side of BMI but during chemo managed to put on a stone, it was a shock as I've always struggled to put on weight, I'm small framed and quite active. Oh how easy it was with the chemo munchies!
It took about 6 weeks to lose half a stone after chemo finished, the extra half a stone hung around a lot longer as I have bloating and digestion damage from treatment. After finishing Herceptin 8 months ago I am finally down to my treatment start weight again. I'm a different shape due to bloating still, but it feels better to be able to get into old clothes again. I didn't diet, just ate sensibly and didn't snack. Because of my new digestive issues, I often have the munchies now so have to ignore that feeling to eat, it's new to me not to feed my face when I feel hungry but I have to remember it's not hunger!
Good luck with your weight loss xx
@suemall you have a beautiful soul. I hope you are feel well also. We both know the side effects are real but yet that part where we are thankful to complain 😉 please reach out to me as well anytime. We’re all a team here. Maybe not a team anyone wants to be part of but the love is real xx
I do hope you can manage to see some progress getting back to your pre chemo weight and even though it probably won’t make you feel better on the ‘dark days’, please remember you are not alone in experiencing the terrible side effects of the cancer treatment. Some days will be easier than others but stay positive and I’m sure you will get there. Sending you many hugs 🤗 and best wishes.
@suemall ThankYou so much for a detailed response. It means so much. The struggle is real as you know. I’m hoping I go back to my original weight soon
Hi @chemobaby, I too was always a steady weight/fit and healthy until treatment - TCH. I put on 2 stone during chemo and thought the weight would fall off when it was finished. Unfortunately as the Herceptin is for a year, I am still struggling to loose the weight. I have managed to loose a stone but it has taken about 6 months of being strict, not eating sugary foods or eating between meals and trying not to eat processed foods. I was unable to do as much physical exercise as I Used to as I am still suffering with fatigue but try and do a walk each day of around 20 mins. Some days are easier than others and some days I just can’t be bothered, but I try not to worry on the days I fall off the wagon. I have 3 more Herceptin sessions to go and wonder if it will be easier to get back to my pre diagnosis weight after they are completed. I totally understand how frustrating it is, and some days I just want to give up and eat loads of cake and chocolate, but I know I would regret it afterwards. I do think that I underestimated how “unfit” I became after the cancer treatment And how difficult it would be to get over. I try not to worry on the days I don’t feel motivated. So, I am sorry that I can’t give you an answer as to how long it will take, but in my case, it’s not going to be any time soon. Good luck to you!
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ive seen this topic before so just looking for suggestions With anyone that’s had similar issues
44yrs old BC June ‘19 .... The chemo I was on had steroids which caused me to gain weight.... 30lbs to be exact 😞 I’ve always been active and never over weight until now. It’s so discouraging especially with everything you already face...on top of that I’ve been on herceptin which has caused water retention and more weight gain. I’ve tried every diet n exercise 6 days a week and no weight loss. I don’t understand . I’m done herceptin in 6 weeks?
how long did it take to lose weight or am I just stuck 😞 any suggestions please help