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Exercise reduces risk of several cancers

2 March 2020

While it has been known for some time that regular exercise provides many benefits on cardiovascular health, diabetes and on reducing risk of cancers such as breast and colon, a recent large meta-analysis of prospective studies with a total of 755,459 individuals has shown reduction in other cancers and that there may be a dose-response relationship.

Information was analysed from 9 studies that had reported physical activity and followed up for 10.1 years for cancer diagnosis. Median age, 62 years, range, 32-91 years.

Individuals who achieved the recommended 2.5 to 5 hours per week of moderate intensity activity had a statistically significant lower risk of 7 cancer types: colon (greatest effect in men), breast, endometrial, kidney, myeloma, liver and non-Hodgkin lymphoma (greatest effect in women).

While limitations apply in that these were observational studies, rather than randomised trials, and the information analysed relied on self-reporting, this does provide yet more information about the significant benefits of exercise for all. Let’s get walking!

Reference: Amount and Intensity of Leisure-Time Physical Activity and Lower Cancer Risk. Charles E. Matthews, PhD1; Steven C. Moore, PhD1; Hannah Arem, PhD2; et al. Journal of Clinical Oncology December 2019

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