Ghrelin stimulates appetite in cancer patients

A new treatment has been discovered which increases the appetite and the nutritional intake of patients with cancer.
A major problem, when it comes to cancer, is the loss of appetite. People with cancer just are not hungry. This loss of hunger in cancer patients (and in anyone who is not hungry) is called “Anorexia”. Unfortunately, this lack of appetite could not come at a worse time. Just when a person needs to eat and take in nutrition in order to build up strength with which to fight the cancer, they lose all desire to eat.
Until the development of this new medication known as Ghrelin, the major means for stimulating appetite in cancer patients was with a medication known as Megesterol (or Megace). This is a hormone which stimulates appetite in many cancer patients and, until now, was the best we could do in order to try to stimulate appetites in patients with cancer.
Well, enter Ghrelin. This is a relatively new hormone which was discovered by Dr. Kojima and colleagues in 1999. Its function is to circulate in the body and to stimulate the development of hunger.
In a study published in February of 2010 in the medical journal Cancer, researchers in Sweden administered Ghrelin as a daily subcutaneous injection for 8 weeks to patients with cancer who had poor appetites. More or less half the patients were given Ghrelin at a low dose and the other half were given Ghrelin at a higher dose.
The results of this study showed that the patients with cancer and a poor appetite who received the higher doses of Ghrelin tended to have significantly improved appetites, improved retention of their body weights and improved levels of energy. What’s more, the patients who received Ghrelin did not have any noteworthy side effects from this medication.
As such, it seems that we have now discovered a new medication for the stimulation of appetite in patients with cancer. For cancer doctors, the finding of this new means to stimulate the appetite of patients with cancer could not come a moment too soon. Lack of appetite has been a difficult problem for patients with cancer for a very long time. All of these concepts and many more are covered and discussed in the Colon Cancer audio CD available on

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