Good news from The Doc:
There is more and more more evidence around the benefits of taking exercise when living with and after cancer is emerging. Researchers have been studying the impact of different types of exercise, from yoga, walking and dancing, to high intensity interval training and even extreme sports, on people during and after cancer treatment. Although most studies have focused on people with the commoner cancers like breast and prostate, some now include people with any type of cancer.
It’s clear that exercise can help the wellbeing and quality of life of people after their cancer treatment, and there’s some evidence that it can help to improve the symptoms that people can continue to have after their treatment, such as tiredness (fatigue), stress and anxiety, and discomfort. There’s also some early evidence that exercise can even reduce the risk of cancer coming back.
There’s a lot more work needed to identify whether different types of exercise have different effects and on people who’ve had different treatments for different types of cancer. For instance, people who’ve had hormone treatment for breast or prostate cancer may well be at increased risk from thinner bones or osteoporosis, and impact exercise such as walking, dancing or resistance training has been shown to improve their bone health.
The minimal recommendation is 75-150 minutes of moderate to vigorous aerobic exercise, with at least two resistance training sessions each week. (walking, running or even a spell on the cross-trainer – whatever has an impact on your bones as well as your muscle). But in Australia and the UK at least 50% of people living with and after cancer are completely inactive, and could benefit from a personal exercise plan.
So, how can you find out about the frequency, intensity, type and timing of the exercise that would best suit you? In England Macmillan Cancer Support has been working hard to spread the word about the benefit of exercise. Look at the ambition on their website: ‘to ensure that everyone living with and beyond cancer is aware of the benefits of physical activity and enabled to choose to become and stay active at a level that’s right for them.’ Click on the link to visit their website: