Although nothing can fully protect someone from developing cancer, there are certain lifestyle choices that can have a major influence on reducing the risks.
By engaging in moderate exercise – biking, swimming, walking or running – you can lower your risk of cancer, while losing weight and increasing your overall wellness.
Here are 6 common forms of cancer and how exercise can help reduce their risks:
Colon cancer – According to the National Cancer Institute, you can reduce your risk of colon cancer by up to 50% compared to those who never exercise. Further evidence showed that people who exercised more had an even lower risk of colon cancer.
Breast cancer – Women who exercise at moderate to vigorous levels for more than 3 hours per week had up to a 40% lower risk of developing breast cancer. This was true of all women no matter their family history or other risk factors.
Uterine Cancer – Research found that there was a nearly 50% reduction in cancer in women who exercise regularly. It was discovered that exercise helps lower obesity and estrogen levels, both which are major factors for developing uterine cancer.
Lung cancer – Studies showed that people who exercised more were less likely to develop lung cancer. Researchers could not prove the link, but decreased use of tobacco products by those who exercise may be the link.
Prostate cancer – Research shows that men who exercised most days of the week had a reduced risk of prostate cancer.
Colorectal cancer – Nearly 40 different studies have shown that people who exercise often can reduce their risk of colon cancer by 20% compared to sedentary people. Exercise causes changes in digestive acids that have been found to protect people from cancer.
While benefits can be gained from biking, swimming, walking or running, here are 10 ways – some that don’t even seem like exercise – to work out moderately through out the day:
- Use stairs rather than an elevator
- Walk or bike to your destination
- Take an activity class at a gym
- Walk around the block after dinner
- Exercise at lunch with co-workers
- Go dancing
- Join a sports team
- Use a stationary bike while watching TV
- Park a little farther from your destination
- Walk in a mall when weather is bad
If none of those appeal to you, find your favorite form of activity and commit to it several times per week to reduce your cancer risk. Think about engaging in a variety of exercises to stay motivated about being active.
Share this article with family and friends who might be interested in reducing their risk of developing cancer.