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How To Lose Weight After Chemo And Menopause

Weight And Breast Cancer Risk

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Most reports have suggested that obesity is associated with an increase in hormone receptorpositive postmenopausal breast cancer, but not in hormone receptornegative disease. A secondary analysis of the Womens Health Initiative demonstrated a 52% increase in the risk of hormone receptorpositive breast cancer in obese vs normal-weight women but no significant increase in the risk of hormone receptornegative cancers. There is an estimated12% increase in the risk of developing breast cancer for each 5-point increase in body mass index .

Studies have shown that obese premenopausal women are at slightly lower risk of developing breast cancer compared with their normal-weight counterparts.

It is not well understood why obesity is associated with an increased risk of postmenopausal hormone receptorpositive breast cancer but a decrease in the risk of premenopausal hormone receptorpositive breast cancer. One hypothesis for the pathophysiology relating obesity to breast cancer risk focuses on the differential impact of obesity on sex hormone levels in premenopausal and postmenopausal women. Postmenopausal women derive oestradiol from peripheral conversion of androgens by the enzyme aromatase. Adipose tissue is rich in aromatase, which results in obese women having higher levels of oestradiol. Overall, approximately 15% of breast cancer cases in postmenopausal women may be attributable to elevated weight.

Do Other Breast Cancer Medications Cause Weight Gain

Hormone therapy is another treatment that can cause it. This treatment lowers the amount of estrogen and progesterone in women and the amount testosterone in men. It tends to cause an increase in body fat, too. At the same time, there’s a decrease in muscle mass and a change in the way your body converts food into energy.

Many women taking tamoxifen have felt the drug was responsible for their weight gain. So far, though, no conclusive studies have shown a relationship between this hormone and the gains.

Weight gain is not typical in women who’ve undergone surgery alone, or women who’ve had surgery followed by radiation alone.

Causes Of Menopause Weight Gain

After attaining a certain age, your body makes much fewer estrogens and progesterone. Your hormone levels may go up and down during this stage, causing hot flashes and irregular sleep, among other menopause symptoms.

While the hormones largely contribute to weight gain around your abdomen, aging, lifestyle factors, and genetics also play a part. Estrogen, in particular, influences body fat distribution. As the estrogen levels drop, women start to gain mass fat around the abdomen, giving them the apple shape.

Other factors that may contribute to weight gain around menopause include:

  • Number of children
  • Loss of muscle mass

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What Might Cause Me To Gain Weight

Many things can play a role.

Chemotherapycan bring on premature menopause. And with it comes a slowing of the metabolism. That makes it harder to keep weight off. Menopause also causes you to gain more body fat and lose lean muscle.

Itâs common for women who have chemotherapy to gain about 5 to 14 pounds over a year. Some gain less, while others put on as many as 25 pounds.

Another reason for weight gain is the use of corticosteroids. These medications help with nausea and swelling, or to stop reactions to chemotherapy. These drugs can boost your appetite. Corticosteroids are hormones that can also cause an increase in fatty tissue. They can make you lose muscle mass in your arms and legs, and gain belly fat, too. You may also have a fullness of the neck or face. Loss of muscle makes weight gain more apparent.

Women treated with steroids may also put on pounds, but the weight gain is usually seen only after weeks of continuous use.

Some research suggests that weight gain is also related to lack of exercise . When you get your cancer treatment, itâs common to feel stress and have some fatigue, nausea, or pain. That can lead to a drop in how much physical activity you get.

Weight gain may also be related to intense food cravings. Some women crave sweets and carbohydrates during chemotherapy. Too much of these foods can lead to added pounds.

Insulin Resistance Is A Trigger For Meno Belly Weight Gain

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Insulin resistance can also contribute to weight gain. If your insulin receptors have become less sensitive to insulin, you can have higher levels of blood sugar and lower energy and also increased disease risk for diabetes and cardiovascular problems. Chronic stress and abdominal fat can encourage insulin resistance. This results in higher insulin levels that can make the body more easily turn calories into fat even if you’re dieting.

The good news is you can do something about insulin resistance. Strength training to build muscle also boosts your metabolism and makes those insulin receptors more sensitive, helping you to lose weight. Ever notice how men tend to lose weight more easily than women? It’s because they have more lean muscle mass.

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First What Is Menopause

Menopause marks the end of a womans menstrual cycles. It is defined as a full 12 months without a menstrual period for women over the age of 40.2 While the average age in North America is around 52, the hormonal changes can start in a womans early 40s and last into her 60s.3

Research shows that the timing of menopause is a complex mix of genetics, ethnicity, geography, socio-economic status, and lifestyle factors. 4

The symptoms of menopause are well known: hot flashes, night sweats, mood changes, brain fog, headache, disrupted sleep, vaginal dryness, bloating, and more. Unfortunately, weight gain and increased body fat, especially around the abdomen, are very common complaints.5

Its estimated that most women, without changing anything in their diet or lifestyle, gain an average of 2 to 5 pounds during the menopausal transition. However, some gain much more than this.6

Coping With Weight Changes

You might be able to have hormone replacement therapy to control symptoms caused by low levels of sex hormones. But you cant take HRT if you are having breast cancer treatment that aims to stop the body producing sex hormones or block their action.

Changes in weight can affect your confidence and self esteem. Trying to make changes to your diet and starting or increasing exercise when you arent feeling at your best can be difficult. Treatments for cancer, including hormone treatments can cause tiredness which may make exercising more difficult. And this can add to weight gain.

Hormone symptoms, such as hot flushes and sweats, can also make it more difficult to cope. Take things one step at a time and talk to your doctor or nurse about any problems you have.

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Breast Cancer, Menopause and the Emotions that go along with it.

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Hormonal Therapy & Weight Gain

Hormonal therapy is used to treat several types of cancer, including breast, uterine, testicular, and prostate. The medicines used help lower the amount of estrogen or progesterone in the human body. While this form of treatment is effective, some major side effects include an increase in weight due to an increase in fat deposits and a decrease in muscle and metabolism.

How Quickly Do You Lose Weight With Cancer

Unexplained rapid weight loss can be the sign of cancer or other health problems. The Mayo Clinic recommends that you see your doctor if you lose more than 5 percent of your total body weight in six months to a year. To put this into perspective: If you weigh 160 pounds, 5 percent of your body weight is 8 pounds.

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Search Strategy And Eligibility Criteria

Through the use of the Preferred Reporting Items for Systematic Reviews and Meta-analyses Guidelines, a systematic search of the literature was conducted . A search of Embase, Scopus, Pubmed and CINAHL from inception to December 2016 was performed. Search terms were limited to the title and abstract search of the following terms: AND AND AND . Search terms used for each database are available in Table . Ongoing trials were also reviewed as these studies will provide further evidence on the effectiveness of individualized dietary counselling and physical activity interventions. Inclusion of these studies in this review provides the opportunity to identify which gaps in the existing literature may be addressed by current ongoing trials, and where gaps in this evidence base remain. Manual searches of the US National Clinical Trials Registry, the Australian New Zealand Clinical Trials Registry and the International Standard Randomized Controlled Trial Number Registry were conducted to identify ongoing trials.

What Are The Risks Of Gaining Or Losing Pounds

How To Lose Weight During Menopause

Weight gain can raise your risk for getting high blood pressure, heart disease, and diabetes. Being overweight also puts you at risk for getting other types of cancers. Research has also shown that carrying around extra pounds can raise your risk of breast cancer recurring.

Weight loss can cause you to lose energy, and poor nutrition can make it harder for you to recover.

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Dietitians Offer Strategies For Controlling Weight After Cancer Treatment

Michelle Churches walks 11,000 steps during her 10-hour nursing shift at an outpatient surgery center in Trenton.

She knows this because she wears a pedometer. After walking those 11,000 steps, she comes home and pulls together a homemade dinner in about 30 minutes. She chats with her husband and kids, cleans up the kitchen and heads out to walk the dog. Some weeks, depending on her work schedule, she’ll fit in an extra 12-hour shift to help fund a gift she wants to give her three children: a debtfree ride through college.

To say that Churches is active would draw an affectionate chuckle from her friends. When the season is right, Churches has been known to work from dawn to dusk in her herb garden, stopping only long enough for occasional water breaks. So when she was diagnosed in 2005 with breast cancer, weight wasn’t a concern for her. She was 5 feet 7 inches and 138 pounds. But after a mastectomy, chemotherapy, radiation and hormone therapy, Churches has found it’s more difficult to maintain her weight.

“I work my butt off so that now when I look at a Reese’s Peanut Butter Cup, I have a little calculator in my head: How much will it take to burn this off? Is it worth it?” she says.

It may be more difficult to lose weight, but Daniels and Burke stress that it’s still important to try to control what you can: diet and exercise.

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Why Have I Gained Weight

There are several reasons why someone might put on weight during or after treatments such as chemotherapy.

  • Your diet may change during treatment for example some people crave and eat more higher-calorie foods, or their tastes may change during chemotherapy.
  • Steroids, often given with chemotherapy, can cause people to put on weight.
  • The menopause, brought on by treatments such as hormone therapy or chemotherapy, can lead to weight gain.
  • You may be less active that usual when having or recovering from treatment.

Questions To Ask Your Health Care Team

Low Estrogen Causes in Women
  • Can this cancer or its treatment cause weight gain?

  • Can my cancer treatment cause edema?

  • What are ways I can track my weight during cancer treatment?

  • Who should I tell if I notice changes in my weight?

  • Is there an oncology dietitian and/or other specialists that I can talk with about making food choices and my exercise routine?

  • Are there certain exercises I should avoid due to my diagnosis or its treatment?

  • Who can I talk with if I need help coping with stress or other emotional effects of cancer?

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Achieving And Maintaining A Healthy Weight

Admittedly, getting through breast cancer treatment is plenty challenging unto itself. Now you have to think about reaching a healthy weight, too? Just remember that the effort can pay off in major ways, Doyle says. Losing extra pounds might not only protect you from cancer recurrence it could improve other aspects of your wellbeing. Progressing toward a healthier weight also may build your confidence in setting and working toward new goalsa potential boon for your mental recovery.

If losing weight sounds like a daunting addition to your recovery to-do list, Doyle advises making the journey as easy on yourself as possible. Start with small changes that help you feel in charge of your health again, and celebrate your everyday victories. When you were going through treatment, there were so many things going on in your life that you couldnt control, she says. But having the opportunity to take back control of your life and positively affect your health will be a huge step forward.

Michelle I. Cardel, PhD, MS, RD, WW’s director of global clinical research and nutrition. The WW Science Team is a dedicated group of experts who ensure all our solutions are rooted in the best possible research.

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How Long Do Chemo Steroids Stay In Your System

You could expect a dose or prednisone to be out of your system in 16.5 to 22 hours. The elimination half life of prednisone is around 3 to 4 hours. This is the time it takes for your body to reduce the plasma levels by half. It usually takes around 5.5 half lives for a drug to be completely eliminated from your system.

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How To Stop Menopausal Weight Gain

No one likes to walk around carrying that extra weight around the belly, whether caused by menopause or not. The good news is that there are various approaches you could try to fight weight gain and manage a healthy weight.

Here are the top tips to lose weight during menopause.

Sit Less and Stand More

The more your body is active, the more calories it burns. One easy way to manage this is to stand as much as you can. This increases calorie burn and helps to prevent heart problems. Several studies found a link between sitting for long hours and higher levels of abdominal fat, as well as, fat accumulation in the liver. This was found to increase the risk of heart disease and diabetes.

There are many instances when you can stand upright instead of sitting. For example, pace up and down the house when on a phone call, park farther from where you live or work so you could walk more. If you love watching, consider investing in a pedal exerciser that you can place on the floor to help you stay in motion while enjoying your favorite shows. You can also opt for a standing desk if your job involves sitting on a computer from morning to evening.

Exercise More

To burn that belly fat, you can try engaging in some intense workouts like cycling, swimming, running, or walking. Resistance training is also highly advisable to help maintain lean mass and decrease hunger.

Find a gym and choose a routine that will work for you. Each persons body will respond differently to varied workouts.

What Are The Consequences Of Loss Of Ovarian Function

How To Lose Weight After Menopause (FAST &  NATURAL!)
  • Infertility, which for many women is devastating.
  • Amenorrhoea/ oligo-menorrhoea may be the first indicator of POI.
  • Symptoms of oestrogen deficiency. These include hot flushes, mood changes, sleep disturbance, joint aches, dry vagina or poor lubrication during sexual arousal. These symptoms may occur even while the woman is still having menstrual periods. The onset of symptoms may occur gradually or suddenly.
  • Psychological distress with increased rates of anxiety and depression. Women often feel confused, sad, jealous of other womens pregnancies or old before their time. Psychological counselling can ease this distress. Support from the womans partner, family and friends is important.
  • Long-term consequences include osteoporosis and cardiovascular disease4.
  • Women must also cope with the diagnosis of cancer or severe medical illness which has necessitated the use of chemotherapy/ radiotherapy and the related long-term consequences.

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