Success of radiotherapy in eradicating a tumour depends principally on the total radiation given, but the tolerance of healthy tissues surrounding the tumour limits its dose. The clinical manifestations of either acute or late radiation toxicity can be quite severe. Complementary and integrative medicines have recently attracted the interest of researchers and medical practitioners since several trials showed some evidence about the benefi ts of using herbal medicine and acupuncture for cancer-related fatigue, nausea and vomiting, diarrhea, oncological pain, radiodermitis, mucositis, anxiety, and depression. There is also very good evidence for the effi cacy of sport/physical activity and nutrition in oncology, where a regular diet of vegetables is recommended. Physical activity is recommended also during chemo/radiotherapy for the reduction of treatment side effects. Dietary modifi cation such as caloric restriction has been shown to decrease tumour initiation and progression, and could be used during radiotherapy as a novel therapeutic intervention to enhance the cytotoxic effect on the tumour and reduce the cytotoxic effects on healthy tissue.
Keywords: CIM, Radiotherapy, Side effects, Herbal medicine, Acupuncture, Lifestyle.