The New Normal

The entire process of your journey with breast cancer, from diagnosis to cure, can be very stressful and several lifestyle changes will have been made. Some of these lifestyle changes will be temporary, as they apply only to your treatment. Others, you may choose to be permanent.

Cancer survivors often do not look at life the same way as they did before. This is not always a bad thing, as it could make them appreciate certain people or things in life more than they ever did before. It is important, however, not to rush things getting back to normal. Just as it was likely a gradual process to stop doing some of the things you used to do, for the purpose of treatment, it will be a gradual process to return back to doing these things. You will still have fatigue and may experience emotions that you did not expect.

The new normal may involve changes in your diet, adding some things and taking away others. It may also involve a new exercise routine, or exercise in general if you did not exercise before. Overall, surviving breast cancer will likely make you more eager to live a healthy lifestyle, receiving the most joy from life that you can.


1 Willett, W. C. (2000). Diet and Cancer. The Oncologist , 393-404.

2 Blackburn, G. L., Copeland, T., Khaodhiar, L., & etal. (2004). Diet and Breast Cancer. Journal of Women’s Health , 183-192.

3 McNeely, M. L., Campbell, K. L., Rowe, B. H., & etal. (2006). Effects of exercise on breast cancer patients and survivors: a systematic review and meta-analysis. Canadian Medical Association Journal , 34-41.

4 Ligibel, J. A., Campbell, N., Partridge, A., & etal. (2009). Impact of a Mixed Strength and Endurance Exercise Intervention on Insulin Levels in Breast Cancer Survivors . American Society of Clinical Oncology , 907-912.

This article was originally published on July 27,2012 and last revision and update of it was 9/2/2015.