well known that exercise decreases the risk of developing
cancer. Studies show theres a 25 percent reduction in the
risk of breast cancer among the most physically active women,
compared to those who are least active.
protective role of exercise is noted in many other cancers,
including lung, endometrial, colon and prostate. But, did you
know exercise is helpful during and after cancer treatment as
to the American Cancer Society, research shows exercise during
cancer treatment can improve physical functioning and quality
of life. Moderate exercise can:
Increase strength and endurance
Strengthen the cardiovascular system
course, there may be certain issues that prevent or affect a
persons ability to exercise due to disease or type of
Anemia (having a low number of red blood cells or quantity of
hemoglobin or protein)
weak immune system
should use extra care to reduce risk of injury, including
older people and those with bone disease, arthritis or nerve
damage (peripheral neuropathy).
exciting studies show regular physical activity is linked to
increased life expectancy after a diagnosis of cancer and, in
many cases, a decrease in the risk of cancer recurrence,"
says Mayo Clinic Health System nurse practitioner Kaye Holt.
"At least 20 studies of people with breast, colorectal,
prostate and ovarian cancer have suggested physically active
cancer survivors have a lower risk of cancer recurrence and
improved survival compared with those who are inactive."
Cancer Society, World Cancer Research Fund, American Institute
for Cancer Research, American College of Sports Medicine and
U.S. Department of Health and Human Services advocate for
physical activity for cancer patients and survivors. The
American Cancer Society recommends cancer survivors take these
Participate in regular physical activity
Avoid inactivity, and return to normal daily activities as
soon as possible after diagnosis
Exercise at least 150 minutes per week
Include strength training exercises at least two days per week
everyone is ready to head to the gym during or after cancer
therapy. However, reconnecting with an activity you like to do
can increase your enjoyment and ability to stick with an
exercise program," says Holt.
explains exercise can include a bike ride with friends or
chasing your dog around the park. She also notes walking is a
great activity for almost everyone, and swimming can be a
wonderful alternative for those with joint issues. In
addition, Holt says yoga is fantastic for strengthening,
flexibility and balance concerns.