Weight gain associated with breast cancer survivorship
Full article: http://cebp.aacrjournals.org/content/24/8/1262.long
Weight gain in breast cancer survivors can affect survival and quality-of-life. This study found that breast cancer survivors are more likely to gain weight than women of the same age who are at high risk, but have never been diagnosed with cancer. The study looked at which groups of survivors were more likely to gain weight. (8/24/15)
The National Comprehensive Cancer Network and the American Cancer Society have recommendations for physical activity for cancer survivors:
- Physical activity and exercise recommendations should be tailored to each person's abilities and preferences.
- People should try to engage in some physical activity daily; this may include:
- taking the stairs.
- walking more.
- Each week, people should try to achieve the following:
- At least 150 minutes of moderate-intensity exercise, with an ideal goal of 300 minutes, 75 minutes of vigorous activity or a combination of the two.
- Two to three sessions of strength/resistance training that include all of the major muscle groups (chest, shoulders, arms, back, core and legs).
- Stretch major muscle groups at least two days per week.
- Avoid sitting or lying down for long periods and other prolonged sedentary behavior.
Nutrition for people diagnosed with cancer
The National Comprehensive Cancer Network (NCCN) recommends the following for cancer survivors:
- Think about your food choices and amount of fruits, vegetables and unrefined grains you eat compared with red and processed meats, alcohol, and foods or drinks with added fat or sugar.
- Think about your eating habits, including portion size, snacking, how often you eat out and use of added fats or sugars.
- All survivors should be encouraged to:
- Make informed choices about food to ensure variety and adequate nutrient intake.
- Limit refined sugars.
- Eat a diet that is at least 50% plant-based, consisting mostly of vegetables, fruit and whole grains.
- Track calorie intake; monitoring of calories is an effective way to manage weight.
- Minimize alcohol intake to no more than one drink per day for a woman and two drinks per day for a man.
- For patients desiring further dietary guidelines, the USDA approximate food plate volumes are:
- Vegetables and fruits should comprise half the volume of food on the plate
- Vegetables: 30% of plate; Fruits 20% of plate
- Whole grains: 30% of plate
- Protein: 20% of plate
- Recommended sources of nutrients:
- Fat: plant sources such as olive or canola oil, avocados, seeds and nuts, and fatty fish.
- Carbohydrates: fruits, vegetables, whole grains and legumes.
- Protein: poultry, fish, legumes, low-fat dairy foods, and nuts.
The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics, the United States Office of Disease Prevention and Health Promotion and the American Institute for Cancer Research also publish expert guidelines on nutrition and health.
Questions To Ask Your Health Care Provider
- How can I manage my weight?
- Cancer treatment is hard on my body—how do I exercise when I don’t feel like I can/want to?
- My weight fluctuates—should I be worried if I gain a few pounds?
- What are the current guidelines for weight management for cancer survivors?
- Can you refer me to a registered dietitian who specializes in oncology nutrition?
FORCE is a national nonprofit organization, established in 1999. Our mission is to improve the lives of individuals and families affected by adult hereditary cancers.