Preventing Breast and Colon Cancer with your Feet

December 15, 2010

Whatever ‘new’ discovery about cancer prevention comes along (like a daily aspirin), there are certain well-established principles that we need to remember first. Once you have sorted out a healthy diet that you will stick with and reduced environmental and emotional stresses in your life then 10,000 cancers a year could be prevented in the United Kingdom alone if people took several brisk walks a week, according to a report from the World Cancer Research Fund.

“You don’t have to be an athlete to reduce your cancer risk,” said Henry Scowcroft of Cancer Research UK. “There’s solid evidence that certain cancers — including breast and bowel cancer — are less common in people who do regular, moderate exercise such as brisk walking.”

Nor are we talking about marathon effort here as the report found that an average of just 45 minutes of moderate exercise per day could prevent roughly 4,500 cases of bowel cancer in the United Kingdom each year and approximately 5,500 cases of breast cancer. That is more than 10 percent of the current cancer figures so that has to be worth paying attention to.

Walking is something everyone can fit into their life, whether it’s not taking the car down to the local shop for the paper, or getting off the bus a stop early and walking the rest of the way. If walking doesn’t appeal then any moderate exercise that you enjoy will fit the bill so dust off the dancing shoes, set to in the garden, go for a swim and it even includes vigorous housework like vacuuming. Just ten minutes a time, done regularly is better than slogging away for an hour every other week, and surely such a simple change to reduce your cancer risk has got to be worth it.

Exercise is effective for cancer prevention because cancer cells are typically oxygen-deprived, and exercise is a direct way to deliver extra oxygen to cells throughout the body and to improve the immune response. Exercise can also regulate the production of certain hormones that, unregulated, may spur tumour growth.

Get out those walking shoes, and if it’s still too slippy out there put on some music and dance!


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