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Oncology Study Shows Weight Loss Reduces Breast Cancer Recurrence

Posted by floriza in Oncology

Numerous oncology studies have shown that women who are obese have a greater chance of developing breast cancer, especially after menopause. Women who are overweight are also more likely to suffer more severe cases of breast cancer, as well as more frequent recurrences. Their risk of death from the disease is also higher. This has been shown to be true even when the most advanced treatments are used, and it also appears to be true of women who gain weight after their breast cancer diagnosis.

In a recent study, women who ate a lot fat diet and lost at least six pounds had fewer recurrences of breast cancer. The study did not include women in the early stages of breast cancer, so no conclusion could be drawn as to whether weight loss during this time could prevent breast cancer diagnoses. The researchers hope that more studies will be conducted to determine if weight loss can keep women free of breast cancer or improve survival rates.

Detailed Results of the Oncology Study

A study in 1976 showed that overweight and obese women with breast cancer had a survival rate of 5.6 percent within five years of diagnosis. Women who were of a more normal weight had a survival rate within five years of diagnosis of 79.9 percent. The tumors of obese women were also generally larger.

More than 50 studies were analyzed, and the result was that obese women are 30 percent more likely to die of breast cancer than women within a healthy weight range for their height. The age of the women or whether they were pre- or post-menopausal did not seem to come into play in these statistics. The researchers noted, however, that earlier records might be tainted by the fact that overweight women in the past were often given lower doses of chemotherapy out of fear of toxicity. There is evidence that this practice created less positive outcomes for the women involved.

Obesity Complicates Breast Cancer

Evidence in subsequent oncology studies still shows that obese women are likely to suffer more from breast cancer. It is also common for women to gain weight after they have been diagnosed with breast cancer. The Women’s Interventional Nutrition Study (WINS) studied 2,400 women and found that those who went on a low fat diet experienced a 24 percent reduction in recurrences compared to the control group. It is important to note, however, that these women lost a small amount of weight while on the diet.

Another study called Women’s Healthy Eating and Living (WHEL) also placed women on a low fat diet, but they did not lose weight. In this case, they did not experience fewer recurrences of breast cancer.

Oncologists in New Jersey can diagnose breast cancer and offer recommendations as to how to maintain a healthy weight.


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