Edinburgh Research Explorer

Combining optimal nutrition and exercise in a multimodal approach for patients with active cancer and risk for losing weight: Rationale and practical approach

Research output: Contribution to journalReview article

  • Tora Skeidsvoll Solheim
  • Ola Magne Vagnildhaug
  • Barry J Laird
  • Trude Rakel Balstad

Related Edinburgh Organisations

Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)110541
Publication statusE-pub ahead of print - 27 Jun 2019


Weight loss and functional decline is a common and detrimental consequence of cancer. The interventions that are offered to patients with weight loss and functional decline often seem haphazard and varying from center to center. The lack of stringent management is probably based both on lack of knowledge of existing treatment guidelines and the current weak level of evidence of clinical effects of different nutritional and exercise interventions. Some studies evaluated multimodal interventions with various treatment combinations, including nutrition and exercise, that report clinically significant effects on cachexia outcomes. As of today, however, there is a paucity of large randomized controlled trials that incorporate both a fully structured exercise program and a well-described nutritional intervention. Studies investigating combinations of several interventions in patients with active cancer and risk for losing weight are too few and too heterogeneous to enable firm conclusions about effect, optimal dose, or timing of interventions. However, data presented in this review suggest an overall benefit, especially if interventions are started before weight loss and loss of function become too severe. Thus, the aim of this review was to examine the evidence for combined treatments targeting weight loss in cancer patients.

ID: 123889132