We all know how every medical expert tends to always encourage us to maintain a healthy lifestyle. They say that regular exercise and kicking bad habits can reduce the chances of contracting dangerous diseases and illnesses like cancer. The more you are able to work on your exercise and fitness routine, the greater will be the chances of you strengthening your body’s immune system.
In very simple words, physical activity can be defined as the use of energy that helps in the movement of bones, muscles, and connecting tissues. In other words, anything that you are doing apart from resting can be termed as physical activity. Going to the gym, walking, running, swimming, dancing, cycling, or even doing chores are all physical activities.
In this article, we will try to establish a direct link between exercise and cancer prevention. We are also going to discuss the landmark study from the American Cancer Society and Emery University from Atlanta. If you are someone that is concerned about the issue, please read what we have to say till the end.
Physical Activity and Cancer: The Relationship you should understand
According to medical experts and scientists, regular exercises can help in preventing cancer in three major ways-
- Being fit helps you keep your body at a healthy weight. Experts point out that obesity and being overweight increase the risk of at least 13 different types of cancer.
- Exercising helps in the release of positive hormones from the brain. These hormones like serotonin are directly responsible for reducing the chances of cancerous cells.
- Lastly, engaging with physical activity helps in improving the body’s digestion. This allows for a better release of toxins from the body.
Needless to say, all the above needs to be done by avoiding bad or negative habits. Other lifestyle changes which can help reduce the risk of cancer include limiting alcohol consumption, giving up smoking, and keeping safe in the sun.
The Study Conducted by the American Cancer Society and Emery University
In what is being termed as a landmark study, the American Cancer Society and Emery University were able to prove for the first time ever a direct link between exercise and how it can help prevent the occurrence of cancer.
The study whose sample size was 600,000 adult men and women in the District of Columbia was able to establish that engaging in physical activity for as less as 300 minutes per week can help in preventing cancer. The following are some of the major points that should be highlighted with regard to the study-
- 46000 of all the cancer cases in the United States could have been prevented if the individuals engaged in regular exercise and physical activities.
- Heightened inactivity was linked to 7 different forms of cancer including stomach, kidney, bladder, colon, esophageal, breast, and even endometrial cancers.
- Physical activity as considered by the study team comprised of light to moderate exercises like walking, getting up from the bed, and doing household chores.
- Working out or engaging in physical activity was found to improve the strength of the immune system which equips it to fight the onset of cancerous cells.
- The study team used a sophisticated analytical equation called PAF or Population Attribution Fraction to assess the study and draw inferences in terms of the research.
How an Individual should add Physical Exercises to their day-to-day activities?
Medical experts point to the following things that normal individuals can carry out as part of their day-to-day activities-
- Sitting less
- Walking more
- Regular work-out routine
- Strength training
- Increased standing
- Eating healthy
- Avoiding bad habits
The Final Word
For a very long time, there were notions and conjectures in the medical community that was trying to establish a direct link between physical activity and cancer prevention. With this study, scientists and medical experts have for the very first time shown that staying healthy and working out for at least 300 minutes a week can drastically reduce the chances of Cancer Prevention. If you would like to add any other informative point to the article, please mention the same in the comments section below.