May Cut Older
Women's Breast Cancer Risk
YORK (Reuters Health) - Older women who exercise may be less likely
than their inactive peers to develop breast cancer, Dutch researchers
biked or walked for more than an hour each day had a 19% reduction
in their odds of developing breast cancer, according to Dr. Miranda
J. M. Dirx of Maastricht University in the Netherlands.
which are published in the September 15th issue of the journal
Cancer, add to a growing body of evidence linking physical activity
to a reduced risk of breast cancer.
evaluated exercise habits among more than 62,000 women aged 55
to 69 years, and looked at their risk of developing breast cancer
over a 7-year period. During that time about 1,200 women developed
of the current study support the hypothesis that physical activity
protects against breast (cancer) in postmenopausal women,'' Dirx
and colleagues write.
activity is one of the few modifiable, protective factors for
breast (cancer) and there are many other important health-related
reasons to promote regular exercise,'' the authors conclude.
still many questions about the interaction between physical activity
and breast cancer,'' Dr. Debbie Saslow of the American Cancer
Society in Atlanta, Georgia, said in an interview with Reuters
Health. ``However, the evidence is leaning toward the fact that
exercise seems to have a protective effect.''
indicates that postmenopausal women who exercise 1 hour each day
can significantly cut their breast cancer risk, according to Saslow.
And she noted that 75% of breast cancer cases occur in postmenopausal
She also pointed
out that physical activity has many other health benefits.
can help your overall health,'' Saslow said. ''It decreases the
risk for heart disease--a disease that affects women much more
(often) than breast cancer.''
adults, she added, should get some form of exercise at least 30
minutes a day. ``If you already do that,'' she said, ``increase
the time to an hour.''
Reference Source 89
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