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"What about diet?" A qualitative study of cancer survivors' views on diet and cancer and their sources of information

Beeken, RJ; Williams, K; Wardle, J; Croker, H; (2016) "What about diet?" A qualitative study of cancer survivors' views on diet and cancer and their sources of information. European Journal of Cancer Care , 25 (5) pp. 774-783. 10.1111/ecc.12529. Green open access

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Abstract

Given the abundance of misreporting about diet and cancer in the media and online, cancer survivors are at risk of misinformation. The aim of this study was to explore cancer survivors' beliefs about diet quality and cancer, the impact on their behaviour and sources of information. Semi-structured interviews were conducted with adult cancer survivors in the United Kingdom who had been diagnosed with any cancer in adulthood and were not currently receiving treatment (n = 19). Interviews were analysed using Thematic Analysis. Emergent themes highlighted that participants were aware of diet affecting risk for the development of cancer, but were less clear about its role in recurrence. Nonetheless, their cancer diagnosis appeared to be a prompt for dietary change; predominantly to promote general health. Changes were generally consistent with healthy eating recommendations, although dietary supplements and other non-evidence-based actions were mentioned. Participants reported that they had not generally received professional advice about diet and were keen to know more, but were often unsure about information from other sources. The views of our participants suggest cancer survivors would welcome guidance from health professionals. Advice that provides clear recommendations, and which emphasises the benefits of healthy eating for overall well-being, may be particularly well-received.

Type: Article
Title: "What about diet?" A qualitative study of cancer survivors' views on diet and cancer and their sources of information
Open access status: An open access version is available from UCL Discovery
DOI: 10.1111/ecc.12529
Publisher version: http://dx.doi.org/10.1111/ecc.12529
Language: English
Additional information: © 2016 The Authors. European Journal of Cancer Care Published by John Wiley & Sons Ltd. This is an open access article under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits use, distribution and reproduction in any medium, provided the original work is properly cited.
Keywords: Beliefs, cancer survivorship, diet, information, knowledge, media
UCL classification: UCL
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > Institute of Epidemiology and Health > Behavioural Science and Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health
UCL > Provost and Vice Provost Offices > School of Life and Medical Sciences > Faculty of Population Health Sciences > UCL GOS Institute of Child Health > Population, Policy and Practice Dept
URI: https://discovery.ucl.ac.uk/id/eprint/1502682
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