Breast cancer survivors’ experience of making weight, dietary and physical activity changes during participation in a weight loss intervention

Terranova, Caroline O., Lawler, Sheleigh P., Spathonis, Kym, Eakin, Elizabeth G. and Reeves, Marina M. (2016) Breast cancer survivors’ experience of making weight, dietary and physical activity changes during participation in a weight loss intervention. Supportive Care in Cancer, 25 5: 1-9. doi:10.1007/s00520-016-3542-2


Author Terranova, Caroline O.
Lawler, Sheleigh P.
Spathonis, Kym
Eakin, Elizabeth G.
Reeves, Marina M.
Title Breast cancer survivors’ experience of making weight, dietary and physical activity changes during participation in a weight loss intervention
Journal name Supportive Care in Cancer   Check publisher's open access policy
ISSN 1433-7339
0941-4355
Publication date 2016-12-17
Year available 2017
Sub-type Article (original research)
DOI 10.1007/s00520-016-3542-2
Open Access Status Not yet assessed
Volume 25
Issue 5
Start page 1
End page 9
Total pages 9
Place of publication Heidelberg, Germany
Publisher Springer
Language eng
Subject 2730 Oncology
Abstract Purpose: The aim of this study is to explore breast cancer survivors’ experience of a weight loss intervention and identify potential facilitators and barriers of initiating and maintaining weight, dietary or physical activity changes. Method: Fourteen women randomised to and completing the 12-month weight loss intervention completed semi-structured interviews 7.5 ± 0.5 months after intervention completion. An inductive thematic analysis was conducted whereby interviews were independently coded and themes identified. Results: Women were (mean ± SD) 55.6 ± 8.5 years, 30.2 ± 4.6 kg/m and 17.1 ± 3.4 months post-diagnosis at study baseline. Four themes emerged: (1) perceived motivation to participate in the intervention, (2) facilitators, (3) challenges and (4) maintenance of weight loss and behaviour changes. All women noted the impact of social/family environments, either to facilitate (e.g., support from family members) or impede (e.g., major family event) changes. The structure and support of the intervention, particularly accountability to their coach, was also seen as facilitating. Formation of habitual physical activity facilitated dietary changes. Dietary change strategies most perceived to facilitate weight loss were reducing energy intake by dietary self-monitoring, increasing vegetable intake and portion control. Challenges included breast cancer-specific issues such as post-diagnosis weight gain, treatment-related side effects and psychological issues around readiness to change and self-regulation. Diminished accountability following intervention completion impacted the maintenance of weight loss and behaviour changes, notably dietary self-monitoring. Conclusions: Results suggest that formal involvement of a support person (e.g. family member/friend) and referring women to ongoing, community-based services to maintain patient-perceived accountability may be particularly useful strategies for future weight loss intervention trials targeting women with breast cancer.
Formatted abstract
Purpose: The aim of this study is to explore breast cancer survivors’ experience of a weight loss intervention and identify potential facilitators and barriers of initiating and maintaining weight, dietary or physical activity changes.

Method: Fourteen women randomised to and completing the 12-month weight loss intervention completed semi-structured interviews 7.5 ± 0.5 months after intervention completion. An inductive thematic analysis was conducted whereby interviews were independently coded and themes identified.

Results: Women were (mean ± SD) 55.6 ± 8.5 years, 30.2 ± 4.6 kg/m2 and 17.1 ± 3.4 months post-diagnosis at study baseline. Four themes emerged: (1) perceived motivation to participate in the intervention, (2) facilitators, (3) challenges and (4) maintenance of weight loss and behaviour changes. All women noted the impact of social/family environments, either to facilitate (e.g., support from family members) or impede (e.g., major family event) changes. The structure and support of the intervention, particularly accountability to their coach, was also seen as facilitating. Formation of habitual physical activity facilitated dietary changes. Dietary change strategies most perceived to facilitate weight loss were reducing energy intake by dietary self-monitoring, increasing vegetable intake and portion control. Challenges included breast cancer-specific issues such as post-diagnosis weight gain, treatment-related side effects and psychological issues around readiness to change and self-regulation. Diminished accountability following intervention completion impacted the maintenance of weight loss and behaviour changes, notably dietary self-monitoring.

Conclusions: Results suggest that formal involvement of a support person (e.g. family member/friend) and referring women to ongoing, community-based services to maintain patient-perceived accountability may be particularly useful strategies for future weight loss intervention trials targeting women with breast cancer.
Keyword Breast cancer survivors
Diet
Physical activity
Qualitative
Weight loss
Q-Index Code C1
Q-Index Status Provisional Code
Grant ID APP1041789
ECF-13-09
Institutional Status UQ

Document type: Journal Article
Sub-type: Article (original research)
Collections: HERDC Pre-Audit
School of Public Health Publications
 
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