Dietary interventions can improve clinical outcomes for some women with breast cancer

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Data from the Women’s Intervention Nutrition Study (WINS) presented at the San Antonio Breast Cancer Symposium demonstrated that reducing dietary intake of fat reduces death rates in some women with early stage breast cancer.

The WINS was a randomized trial, to which 2,437 women ages 48 to 79 years were recruited. The women had early stage hormone-unrelated breast cancer, receiving standard-of-care treatments at 39 centers in the United States. They were randomly assigned to follow a dietary intervention that reduced their fat intake for 5 years following diagnosis (975 patients) or to a control group (1,462 patients).

Centrally trained, registered dietitians implemented the low-fat eating plan via eight biweekly individual counseling sessions and subsequent contacts every 3 weeks, plus unannounced 24-hour telephone recalls performed annually. In addition, the women self-monitored and recorded their fat intake in a book. After more than 15 years of follow-up, death rates from all causes in the intervention group were significantly lower than in the control group.

“The dietary intervention was supported for a median of 5 years,” the researchers reported. Based on their findings, however, the researchers suggest that for lifestyle interventions to have a long-term influence on clinical outcomes, they must be lifelong changes rather than short-term interventions.

Nutrition intervention leads to dietary behavior changes in Latina breast cancer survivors
Reducing dietary intake of fat reduces death rates in some women with early stage breast cancer.
Among early-stage breast cancer patients who reduced their dietary fat intake for five years following a diagnosis, after over 15 years follow-up, death rates from all causes were significantly reduced in those who had hormone-unrelated breast cancer, according to data from the Women's Intervention Nutrition Study (WINS).
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