Cancer survivors’ perspectives of dietary information provision after cancer treatment: A scoping review of the Australian context

Katherine H. Barlow, Jolieke C. van der Pols, Stuart Ekberg, Elizabeth A. Johnston

Research output: Contribution to journalReview articlepeer-review

6 Citations (Scopus)


Issue addressed: To support survivor-centred care in Australia, this review maps current knowledge regarding adult cancer survivors’ perspectives of dietary information provision post-treatment.

Methods: A scoping review of research conducted in Australia within the past decade reported using PRISMA-ScR guidelines. Seven databases were searched (01/01/2009-05/06/2020) and records were independently screened by two researchers using eligibility criteria. Papers in the peer-reviewed literature with dietary information post-treatment as a primary and secondary outcome were eligible for inclusion. Data charting included participant characteristics, study methodology and cancer survivors’ reports of dietary information provision post-treatment.

Results: Of 531 records identified, 12 met eligibility criteria. Most studies included breast (58%) and colorectal (42%) cancer survivors within 5 years post-diagnosis (84%). Three studies were conducted amongst specific ethnic groups (Indigenous Australians, Chinese-Australians, Greek-Australians). Participants in the included studies commonly reported limited or ineffective dietary information from healthcare providers post-treatment. Cancer survivors identified a need for individualised information regarding dietary strategies to manage ongoing symptoms, professional support for weight management, and practical skills for healthy eating. Amongst ethnic groups, there was a need for dietary information that considers traditional foods and cultural beliefs, and is available in their native language. Cancer survivors valued ongoing dietary follow-up and support post-treatment, and suggested a variety of face-to-face and online delivery modes. Those residing in rural and remote areas reported barriers to accessing dietary information post-treatment including time, cost, and availability of local services.

Conclusions: There is scope to improve dietary information provision after cancer treatment in Australia.

So what?: Dietary guidance post-treatment should consider individual needs, cultural background, and opportunity for ongoing follow-up and support.
Original languageEnglish
Pages (from-to)232-244
Number of pages13
JournalHealth Promotion Journal of Australia
Issue number1
Early online date23 Apr 2021
Publication statusPublished - Jan 2022
Externally publishedYes


  • Cancer survivors
  • Diet
  • Healthy lifestyle
  • Scoping review
  • Supportive care


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