Experts warn couch potatoes ‘more likely’ to get breast cancer diagnosis | UK News
Couch potatoes who don’t exercise regularly are more likely to be diagnosed with breast cancer, experts warn.
A new study published in the British Journal of Sports Medicine found “strong evidence” that higher levels of physical activity and less “sitting time” are likely to reduce breast cancer risk.
Experts behind the research suggest there is now a clear cause-and-effect relationship between physical activity and reducing the risk of breast cancer.
Using a genetic prediction technique called Mendelian randomization in the study, experts said they were able to back up previous evidence that physical activity lowers cancer risk.
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For the new research, experts included data from 130,957 women of European descent — 69,838 of whom had tumors that had started to spread; 6,667 who had never had a tumor and a comparison group of 54,452 women without breast cancer.
Their results showed that total activity was associated with a roughly 40% lower breast risk Cancerwhile intense activity (three or more days per week) was associated with a similarly reduced risk of pre- or perimenopausal breast cancer.
In contrast, sedentary lifestyle was associated with a higher risk of some types of breast cancer.
The team, which included experts from the University of Bristol, concluded: “Our study provides strong evidence that greater overall physical activity, more activity and less sedentary time are likely to reduce the risk of breast cancer.
Most common cancer
“Broader acceptance of an active lifestyle may reduce the burden of the most common cancer in women.”
There are around 55,900 new cases of breast cancer in the UK each year, making it the most common type of cancer in the country.
Too much alcohol consumption, overweight or obesity and age increase the risk of breast cancer.
dr Kotryna Temcinaite, Senior Research Communications Manager at Breast Cancer Now, said: “One woman is diagnosed with breast cancer every 10 minutes and if nothing changes this will increase to one woman every eight minutes over the next 10 years, so we urgently need to find new ways to prevent people from contracting this devastating disease.”
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She said many factors can affect how likely someone is to be diagnosed, but the amount of physical activity had a clear effect.
“By looking at people who may be genetically predisposed to different levels of physical activity, this innovative study reinforces existing evidence on the importance of reducing the time we spend sitting and increasing the time we spend moving, to reduce the risk of breast cancer.
“This study underscores the importance of our support in helping people make small, healthy lifestyle changes that can have a positive impact on their health and help reduce their risk of breast cancer.”