Keep­ing fit may help pre­vent can­cer

Pakistan Observer - - KARACHI CITY -

KEEP­ING fit may help pre­vent a wide range of can­cers, sug­gests a new analy sis of re­search from the United States and Europe. Re­searchers who pooled and an­a­lyzed data on 1.44 mil­lion peo­ple from 12 stud­ies, finds those who were most phys­i­cally ac­tive in their leisure time had a lower risk of de­vel­op­ing 13 out of 26 types of can­cer, com­pared with those who were the least ac­tive.

The in­ter­na­tional team of re­searchers - in­clud­ing in­ves­ti­ga­tors from the Na­tional Can­cer In­sti­tute (NCI) in Bethesda, MD, and the Amer­i­can Can­cer So­ci­ety in At­lanta, GA - re­ports the find­ings in the jour­nal JAMA In­ter­nal Medicine. The anal­y­sis shows that the risk of de­vel­op­ing seven types of can­cer was at least 20 per­cent lower for the 10 per­cent most ac­tive par­tic­i­pants, com­pared with the 10 per­cent least ac­tive.

The re­searchers con­firmed the al­ready known link be­tween higher lev­els of ex­er­cise and re­duced risk for colon, breast, and en­dome­trial can­cers, and added 10 other can­cers to the list. The great­est re­duc­tions were seen in risks for esophageal ade­no­car­ci­noma, liver can­cer, can­cer of the gas­tric car­dia (part of the stom­ach), kid­ney can­cer, and myeloid leukemia.

Smaller - but still sig­nif­i­cant - re­duc­tions were seen in myeloma and can­cers of the head and neck, rec­tum, and blad­der. The re­searchers also found that in the most part, links be­tween ex­er­cise and can­cer were sim­i­lar in nor­mal and over­weight peo­ple, and in smok­ers and peo­ple who never smoked. How­ever, while a re­duced risk was found for lung can­cer, this only ap­peared to be rel­e­vant to cur­rent and for­mer smok­ers (as op­posed to nev­ersmok­ers). The re­searchers say the rea­sons for this are still be­ing in­ves­ti­gated.

The in­ves­ti­ga­tors say the find­ings bol­ster ev­i­dence that phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity has a ben­e­fi­cial ef­fect on can­cer risk and sup­port the idea that it should be a key el­e­ment of pub­lic health ef­forts to pre­vent and con­trol can­cer. First au­thor Dr. Steven C. Moore, an in­ves­ti­ga­tor with the NCI whose re­search in­ter­ests in­clude phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity, obe­sity and can­cer, ex­plains we al­ready have ev­i­dence that leisure­time phys­i­cal ac­tiv­ity re­duces risks of heart dis­ease and death from all causes. Now, the new study adds many types of can­cer to this list, and he notes:

“Fur­ther­more, our re­sults sup­port that th­ese associations are broadly gen­er­al­iz­able to dif­fer­ent pop­u­la­tions, in­clud­ing peo­ple who are over­weight or obese, or those with a his­tory of smok­ing.” While hun­dreds of stud­ies have shown the ben­e­fit of ex­er­cise on low­er­ing can­cer risk, in the main - apart from links to colon, breast, and en­dome­trial can­cers - the ev­i­dence for most can­cer types has been some­what in­con­clu­sive. The main rea­son for this is be­cause the stud­ies have not in­cluded enough peo­ple.

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