HealthDay News — In a guideline issued by the American Cancer Society and published in the May/June issue of CA: A Cancer Journal for Clinicians, recommendations are presented regarding diet and exercise for reducing the risk for recurrence and mortality among cancer survivors.

Cheryl L. Rock, PhD, RD, from the University of California at San Diego, and colleagues provide evidence-based, cancer-specific recommendations for anthropometric parameters, physical activity, diet, and alcohol intake to reduce cancer recurrence and mortality.

For cancer survivors, the general recommendations include initiation of nutritional assessment and counseling as soon as possible after diagnosis, with the goal of preventing or resolving nutrient deficiencies, preserving muscle mass, and managing treatment-related side effects that may adversely impact nutritional status. Assessment and counseling regarding physical activity should be initiated as soon as possible after diagnosis, with the goal of helping patients prepare for treatments, tolerate treatments, and manage treatment-related side effects. To improve long-term health and increase the odds of survival, the authors recommend avoiding obesity and maintaining or increasing muscle mass; engaging in regular physical activity, with consideration of issues such as type of cancer and treatment modalities; following a healthy eating pattern; and following general advice of the American Cancer Society to reduce the risk for a new cancer.

“We encourage all survivors to work with their care team to develop a program tailored to their individual needs, especially if they are experiencing symptoms or side effects that interfere with their ability to eat well or be active,” Arif Kamal, MD, the chief patient officer at the American Cancer Society, said in a statement.

Several authors disclosed financial ties to the pharmaceutical industry.

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