Open Access

Diet, obesity and breast cancer: an update

Alessandro Cappellani1,Maria Di Vita1,*,Antonio Zanghi1,Andrea Cavallaro1,Gaetano Piccolo1,Massimiliano Veroux2,Massimiliano Berretta3,Michele Malaguarnera4,Vincenzo Canzonieri5,Emanuele Lo Menzo6
Department of Surgery, General Surgery and Breast Unit, University of Catania, Italy
Department of Surgery, Transplantation and Advanced Technologies, University of Catania, Italy
Department of Medical Oncology - National Cancer Institute - I.R.C.C.S. Aviano, PN
Department of Biochemistry, Medical Chemistry and Molecular Biology, University of Catania, Italy
Division of Pathology, National Cancer Institute - I.R.C.C.S. Aviano, PN
Division of Laparoscopic and Bariatric Surgery, University of Maryland, Baltimore, MD USA
DOI: 10.2741/253 Volume 4 Issue 1, pp.90-108
Published: 01 January 2012
(This article belongs to the Special Issue Dietary approaches to prevent chronic-degenerative diseases)
*Corresponding Author(s):  
Maria Di Vita

Numerous studies indagated the relationship between dietary pattern or specific nutrients and breast cancer (BC) risk and survival. Different ethnic o social groups show differences in breast cancer incidence that could be explained by different dietary patterns. Furthermore, many nutrients could reasonably increase the risk of cancer because of their content of carcinogens or their precursors as well as of promoting substances. However, the only convincing evidences linking life style to increased BC risk are related to obesity and moderate intake of alcohol and limited to postmenopause. Saturated fat, red meat, high temperature cooking have been indicated as possible risk factors, but adjusted analyses have not confirmed this association or have limited the relationship to specific subgroups. Even the protective effect of fiber, fruit, vegetables and phytoestrogens has been suggested but not definitively demonstrated. Thus, healthy dietary patterns, with abstention from alcohol and weight control, reduce the risk of cancer or at least improve the survival of affected women by reducing the incidence of comorbidities.

Key words

Breast Neoplasms, Epidemiology, Etiology, Prevention, Control, Body Weight, Diet, Food Habits, Review

Share and Cite
Alessandro Cappellani, Maria Di Vita, Antonio Zanghi, Andrea Cavallaro, Gaetano Piccolo, Massimiliano Veroux, Massimiliano Berretta, Michele Malaguarnera, Vincenzo Canzonieri, Emanuele Lo Menzo. Diet, obesity and breast cancer: an update. Frontiers in Bioscience-Scholar. 2012. 4(1); 90-108.