Lifestyle and breast cancer risk

INTRODUCTION

BREAST cancer remains the most common cancer among Australian women, accounting for 27% of all cancers diagnosed in 20071 and is the second most common cause of cancer-related death.

Due to the increasing incidence, significant morbidity and mortality, breast cancer risk-reduction strategies remain a national health priority.3,4

WEIGHT GAIN AND OBESITY

The strongest current evidence for the primary prevention of cancer and for improving outcomes after diagnosis of cancer relate to achieving and maintaining a healthy weight. 

Pre-diagnosis:

There is consistent high-quality evidence that being overweight or obese is an independent risk factor for breast cancer, with data suggesting that women with a BMI of ≥ 28 kg/m2 have a 26% greater relative risk of cancer compared to lean women.5, 6

Obesity is also an independent