Healthy Body Weight Helps in Long-Term Breast Cancer Survival

Obesity raises the risk of breast cancer and dying from the disease, a new study finds.

“What we know now is that there is a strong link between dying from breast cancer and being obese and it’s not just your BMI near the time you’re diagnosed that’s important.” Christina Dieli-Conwright, PhD, stated in a press release. “This relationship between dying and being obese or overweight may depend on whether the type of breast cancer is hormonally dependent.”

Overweight or obese women with a history of estrogen receptor-positive breast cancer had a high risk of dying of the disease.

The 3,995 women with a diagnosis of invasive breast cancer, between 1995 and 2006, participated in the study. The researchers obtained BMI initially in the study and calculated it from age 18.

Women who were obese at baseline had a 69% higher risk of dying of breast cancer than non-obese women. If the patient was obese at age 18, this increased the morality risk as well. In patients with estrogen-dependent cancer, the higher BMI lead to a greater risk of dying from the cancer.

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