How Exercise Reduces Cancer Risk

By Toni Morberg

Scientists and medical experts have long claimed that exercise reduces cancer risk – not  only of contracting it in the first place, but reducing the risk of recurrence after successful treatment. Until now, they couldn’t explain exactly how.  

A team of researchers in Denmark, led by Pernille Hojman at Copenhagen University Hospital, have reported in Cell Metabolism that adrenalin is what makes the difference. This result is quite astounding with their experiments showing that exercised mice that had cancer established in their system had tumor growth rates 58% to 61% smaller than in the unexercised mice.  

From this, the team deduced that it may have been the adrenaline (epinephrin) that made the difference. To test their theory, they injected one group of cancer-induced mice with adrenaline and another group with saline and found that tumor growth was 61% smaller in adrenalin injected mice. Even more impressive was the fact that the exercised control mice in this group saw a decrease in tumor size of 74%.

 

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While this was very promising, it was evident that something else was involved –  Interleukin-6.  This also spikes during exercise and has been found to help fight tumors.  When combined with epinephren, tumor size was reduced to the same degree found in exercised mice.

So if we want to avoid cancer the answer seems obvious – get out there and exercise. But pushing your body past breaking point on a treadmill may not be the best way for you to do that. Some of us love high intensity cardio, others thrive on yoga. You may love lifting weights, but swimming could be what’s best for your friend. We are all different and our bodies have different needs. Luckily, programs like ph360 or the revolutionary new Shae take the guesswork out of your workout. Figure out what works best for you and you can use exercise to reduce your risk of cancer.

Sourced from The Economist

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