Nutrition expert Cara Anselmo of Memorial Sloan-Kettering says that obesity is a risk factor for several types of cancer and increases the risk of cancer recurrence and cancer-related death. Even modest weight loss may offer a wide range of potential health benefits, including lowering your risk of cancer. Body mass index (BMI) is one way to determine whether you are at a healthy weight, but maintaining healthy lifestyle habits is more important than achieving a specific BMI.
Some chemotherapy drugs and hormonal therapies can cause weight gain. Limitations in physical activity and other lifestyle changes also may cause some people to gain weight after cancer treatment. Anselmo offers several tips to help cancer survivors lose weight, such as keeping a food journal, setting practical goals, periodic weight checks, and having a social support system.