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Bob Unell




The Back in the Swing Cookbook

Selected by Yale’s LEAN Study

 (March 17, 2014) The Back in the Swing Cookbook: Recipes for Eating and Living Well Every Day After Breast Cancer, by Barbara Unell and Judith Fertig (Andrews McMeel Publishing), has been selected for use in the Lifestyle, Exercise and Nutrition (LEAN) Study, a Yale School of Public Health study, funded by the Breast Cancer Research Foundation and Yale Cancer Center.

The Back in the Swing Cookbook shares the essentials of healthy eating”, said Melinda Irwin, Ph.D., M.P.H., and Principal Investigator of The LEAN Study.  “The recipes will help our participants throughout the study, and hopefully beyond.”

The contents of the 288-page book are based on over a decade of work in breast cancer survivorship care by Back in the Swing, a national, non-profit organization, whose mission is to help the nation’s 3 million breast cancer survivors protect and improve their health after treatment.  The book shares the five essential, evidence-based elements of the Back in the Swing Lifestyle:

1.    Breast Cancer Survivor-Specific Medical Care

2.    Movement

3.    Nutrition

4.    Positive emotions

5.    Relaxation/mindfulness

“We are so proud that Dr. Irwin selected The Back in the Swing Cookbook to use in her weight loss study,” said Barbara Unell, founder and President of Back in the Swing USA.  “We are gratified that, after reviewing it from cover to cover, Dr. Irwin has confirmed its value as a tool to help with weight loss counseling.”

The Lifestyle, Exercise and Nutrition (LEAN) research study will examine if a dietary-induced weight loss program and moderate-intensity exercise leads to weight loss and improves serum and breast tissue markers associated with breast cancer (e.g., insulin and C-reactive protein).  Half of the women in the study will be chosen at random to begin a weight loss program that involves 11 in-person or telephone counseling sessions over six months, and half of the women will be chosen at random to continue with their usual care, and in six months will be offered the 11-session weight loss counseling program.

The weight loss program will be individually tailored to each participant, but will include a goal of 10% body weight loss over six months, as well as a reduction in caloric intake between 1200-2000 kcal/day, < 25% dietary fat, and 150 minutes per week of aerobic exercise, such as brisk walking (e.g., three sessions for 50 minutes each or five sessions for 30 minutes each).  Ms. Maura Harrigan, MS, CSO, RD, a certified specialist in oncology nutrition and registered dietician, will counsel each participant on how to eat healthy and exercise safely.

A total of 100 women will be enrolled in the study.

The Back in the Swing Cookbook was recently awarded best cookbook by The International Association of Culinary Professionals (IACP) in its  “Health and Special Diet” Category. For more information on how to purchase the cookbook and to learn more about Back in the Swing, go to: