Publication Date


Document Type


First Advisor

Curr Beamer, Laura

Degree Name

B.S. (Bachelor of Science)

Legacy Department

School of Nursing and Health Studies


Breast cancer is most common invasive cancer occurring in US women. The standard treatment for breast cancer includes surgery, systemic therapy (e.g., chemotherapy, biotherapy, targeted therapy) and radiotherapy. The Healthy People 2020 initiative promotes education and prevention instead of treatment. Therefore, non-invasive lifestyle modifications should be developed to decrease the risk of developing breast cancer among women at population risk and those who carry a genetic mutation conferring increased breast cancer risk. Diet, weight management, and exercise as methods to reduce breast cancer are examined within this literature review. These lifestyle adjustments should be introduced to individuals who are at high risk for breast cancer such as women with inherited mutations in the BRCA1 and BRCA2 genes. Maintaining a healthy weight during between 18-30 years old and 75 minutes of moderate to vigorous exercise per week is associated with reduction of breast cancer occurrences. To date,dietary changes have not consistently and significantly decreased breast cancer incidence in prospective studies. Overall breast cancer, unlike heart disease, does not abide by the rules of “fit but fat,” Individuals who are at high risk should maintain a healthy weight while exercising on a regular basis.


38 pages




Northern Illinois University

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