Paula Berstad

Paula Berstad studies cancer prevention with a special focus on colorectal cancer and colorectal cancer screening. Her interest is in how diet and lifestyle should be taken into account in colorectal cancer screening, so that this lifestyle-related disease can be prevented to the largest possible degree through an optimal screening program.

In the CRCbiome project, she and her colleagues investigate relations between diet, lifestyle, gut microbiome and precursors of colorectal cancer.

Berstad's research also includes projects in which she and colleagues through population studies investigate whether changes in lifestyle affect future cancer risk.

Additionally, she is involved in research on non-participation in colorectal cancer screening and measures to influence immigrants' participation in cancer screening.


Berstad has a master degree in human nutrition. She received her doctorate in fat metabolism and the risk of cardiovascular disease at the University of Oslo in 2003.

She has worked as a postdoctoral fellow and researcher in cancer and nutrition epidemiology at University of Oslo, Akershus University Hospital and Telemark Hospital.

She has also taught public health nutrition at Akershus University College.



Personalizing colorectal cancer screening by lifestyle


Selected publications

Knudsen MD, Botteri E, Holme Ø, Hjartåker A, Song M, Thiis-Evensen E, Norvard ER, Schult AL, Randel KR, Hoff G, Berstad P.
Association between lifestyle and site-specific advanced colorectal lesions in screening with faecal immunochemical test and sigmoidoscopy.
Dig Liver Dis. Dig Liver Dis. 2021 Mar;53(3):353-359.

Knudsen MD, Hoff G, Tidemann-Andersen I, Bodin GE, Øvervold S, Berstad P.
Public Awareness and Perceptions of Colorectal Cancer Prevention: a Cross-Sectional Survey.
J Cancer Educ 2020 Feb 28 (Online ahead of print).
DOI, PubMed

Knudsen MD, Hjartåker A, Robb KA, de Lange T, Hoff G, Berstad P. Improving Cancer Preventive Behaviors: A Randomized Trial of Tailored Lifestyle Feedback in Colorectal Cancer Screening.
Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 2018:27(12):1442-9.
DOI, PubMed

Botteri E, de Lange T, Tonstad S, Berstad P.
Exploring the effect of a lifestyle intervention on cancer risk: 43-year follow-up of the randomized Oslo diet and antismoking study.
J Intern Med 2018:284(3):282-91.
DOI, PubMed

Knudsen MD, Hjartåker A, Olsen MKE, Hoff G, de Lange T, Bernklev T, Berstad P.
Changes in health behavior one-year after testing negative at a colorectal cancer screening – a randomized controlled study.
Eur J Cancer Prev 2018:27(4):316-22.
DOI, PubMed

Kirkøen B, Berstad P, Botteri E, Dalén E, Nilsen JA, Hoff G, de Lange T, Bernklev T.
Acceptability of two colorectal cancer screening tests: Pain as a key determinant in sigmoidoscopy.
Endoscopy 2017:49(11);1075-86.
DOI, PubMed

Berstad P, Botteri E, Larsen IK, Løberg M, Kalager M, Holme Ø, Bretthauer M, Hoff G.
Lifestyle changes at middle-age and risk of total mortality: A population-based prospective cohort study.
J Epidemiol Comm Health 2017;17:59-66.
DOI, PubMed

Knudsen MD, Berstad P, Hjartåker A, Gulichsen EH, Hoff G, de Lange T, Bernklev T, Botteri E.
Lifestyle predictors for discontinuation and outcome in the 2nd round of fecal immunochemical test in colorectal cancer screening.
Br J Cancer 2017:117(4):461-9.
DOI, PubMed

Knudsen MD, de Lange T, Botteri E, Nguyen DH, Evensen H, Steen CB, Hoff G, Bernklev T, Hjartåker A, Berstad P.
Favorable lifestyle before diagnosis associated with lower risk of screen-detected advanced colorectal neoplasisa.
World J Gastroenterol 2016:22(27):6276-86.
DOI, PubMed

Berstad P, Løberg M, Larsen IK, Kalager M, Holme Ø, Botteri E, Bretthauer M, Hoff G.
Long-term lifestyle changes after colorectal cancer screening: randomised controlled trial.
Gut 2015:64(8):1268-76.
DOI, PubMed