New research has found that exercise can help prevent a number of cancers
It’s effective at stopping cancer even in people of a healthy weight
Even low levels of activity like gardening or walking helped prevent cancer
Doctors are urging people to be more active in their daily lives
New research has proven that exercise lowers your risk of cancer, no matter your size.
While many people at a healthy weight think they don’t need to be active, findings by Cancer Council NSW show that exercise is important for everyone.
Its recent report showed that physical activity reduced the risk of cancer in women in particular.
Researcher Dr Visalini Nair-Shalliker said that exercise is beneficial ‘irrespective of their body weight.
‘We found that women who engaged in high levels of physical activity were less likely to be diagnosed with some cancers, compared to inactive women,’ Dr Nair-Shalliker explained.
‘Even low and moderate levels of physical activity were mildly protective on breast cancer risk in post-menopausal women.’
This means that even activities like gardening, walking and lawn bowls could reduce your risk of cancer by as much as 53 per cent.
Scientists are not sure exactly why exercise is so beneficial, but said that there are a number of factors.
‘Physical activity is known to alter hormone metabolism, reduce oxidative stress, improve immune function, decrease inflammation, regulate insulin levels, and enhance lipid metabolism, all of which have an underlying role associated with cancer development and other comorbidities,’ the Cancer Council explained.
As well as this, there are a number of cancers which are more likely to occur in overweight or obese people, so weight loss associated with exercise is also preventative.
‘In our study, we found that obese women were twice as likely to be diagnosed with uterine cancer as women at a healthy weight,’ Dr Nair-Shalliker said.
‘We know that one in three cancer cases can be prevented – obesity and physical activity play a big role in this. For example, being overweight or obese is the cause for nearly 4,000 cancer cases in Australia each year.’