Considering the implications of adverse effects of chemotherapy (CT) and the potential impact of diet on patients' recovery, this study aimed to prospectively evaluate the association between the consumption of food groups, patients' Dietary Inflammatory Index (DII®) scores, and their nutritional status. Anthropometric and dietary assessments of 55 women with breast cancer (BC) were performed at three time points. T0 is the time point after the first CT cycle, T1 is the time point after the intermediate CT cycle, and T2 is the time point after the last CT cycle. We identified a significant increase in weight, body mass index, and waist circumference during CT. Consumption of poultry and eggs was higher in T1 when compared to T2, while consumption of total fruit and total vegetables was higher at T0 compared to T1 and T2. The diet became more pro-inflammatory over the course of treatment (X2(2) = 61.127), and was related to higher abdominal adiposity. Total fruit (T0: R2 = 0.208, T1: R2 = 0.095, T2: R2 = 0.120) and total vegetable consumption (T0: R2 = 0.284, T1: R2 = 0.365, T2: R2 = 0.580) predicted DII® change at the three-time points. Meanwhile, consumption of total grains was significantly associated only with T1 (R2 = 0.084) and T2 (R2 = 0.118), and consumption of simple sugars was significantly associated only with T0 (R2 = 0.137) and T1 (R2 = 0.126). Changes in food consumption led to an increase in the inflammatory profile of the diet, suggesting the necessity to improve the guidelines during and after CT. These results reinforce the need to promote healthier eating practices in concert with maintaining a healthy nutritional status in women with BC treated with CT.
Keywords: antineoplastic agents; breast neoplasms; cancer; diet; dietary inflammatory index; food and nutrition; food consumption; inflammation; nutritional status.