In the future, a part of treatment for breast cancer could be to lose weight. A new study beginning this summer will track 3200 overweight women who have recently been diagnosed with Stage 2 or 3 breast cancer. The goal for the women will be to lose 10 percent of their body weight over 2 years. They will be followed for 10 years to see whether their cancer progresses or not.
Other studies in the past have shown to link obesity and cancer diagnosis, but none have focused on weight loss after diagnosis as a way to improve survival rates or reduce recurrence. This study will look at markers of inflammation, metabolism, insulin and hormones that regulate fat storage. “Obesity makes a great environment for cancer to get a foothold and progress,” said Barbara Gower, a professor of nutrition at the University of Alabama, who is running a short-term trial to see what happens when women with ovarian cancer remove all sugar and starches from their diet.
“We’ve been telling women to do this for years, but we don’t really have definitive proof,” said Dr. Jennifer Ligibel, a breast oncologist. “If the study shows that losing weight by increasing physical activity and reducing calories improves survival, weight loss and physical activity could become a standard part of treatment for millions of breast cancer patients around the world.”
The doctors at The Woman’s Clinic realize how important maintaining a healthy weight is for all aspects of your life. If you feel like it’s time to make a change and take charge of your health, you can meet with our registered dietician who will work with you individually to get you on track!