The Exercise and Nutrition to Enhance Recovery and Good Health for You (ENERGY) trial was a multicenter trial including 692 overweight or obese women who had breast cancer.
Obesity is known to increase risk for all-cause mortality and breast cancer mortality among women in whom the disease was diagnosed and treated. This study is the largest trial on weight loss intervention among survivors of breast cancer.
The women had undergone primary treatment for early stage breast cancer, on average, 2 years before enrollment in the study.
They were randomly assigned to a group-based behavior intervention, including telephone counseling and tailored newsletters, or a less intensive control intervention. Both groups were observed for 2 years, with weight and blood pressure measurements taken at 6, 12, 18, and 24 months.
At 12 months, weight loss was greater in the intervention group than in the control group (6.0% of initial weight vs. 1.5%, respectively).
At 24 months, weight loss was also greater in the intervention group (3.7%) compared with the control group (1.3%). Effects on physical activity and blood pressure were favorable in the intervention group as well.
The study findings demonstrated that a behavioral weight loss intervention can produce clinically meaningful weight loss in overweight/obese breast cancer survivors.
Further studies are needed to test methods for sustained weight loss and to determine the potential benefits of intentional weight loss in this patient population.
The Exercise and Nutrition to Enhance Recovery and Good Health for You (ENERGY) study is the largest weight loss intervention trial among survivors of breast cancer to date.