Does Exercise Reduce Cancer Risk?

Written by Dr. Veena Madhankumar and medically reviewed by iCliniq medical review team

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If you are a physically active person and are already working out, playing, exercising, or actively indulging in any physical activity regularly, you are already running in the right direction towards the race of healthy living. And if not, you really need to check this out to know how exercise and physical activity play a vital role in determining your health and how being sedentary slowly paves the way for cancer. Also, get to know ways to stay active and keep off cancer risk.

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1) Save 30 Minutes to Exercise

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Did you know that experts advise at least 30 minutes of physical activity a day to slow down cancer risk? Being inactive is directly or indirectly linked to colon, rectal, breast, and womb cancer. You may wonder how. But the fact is if you do not exercise regularly you will have problems with digestion and put on more weight. Obesity increases cancer risk. Also, your hormone levels get altered. Exercising 30 minutes a day will control your hormone levels, speed up your digestion, improve your immune system, and help maintain a healthy body weight.

2) Stop Sitting for Long Hours

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The more you sit, the more is the cancer risk. Though the modern day’s lifestyle, nature of jobs, and work from home concept due to the pandemic necessitate you to sit for long hours even if you do not want to, you can make time and create situations to get out of the chair or couch and engage your body in some movements. You can take frequent small breaks from your work hours and utilize them to move your body. Walk to the kitchen and make some coffee for yourselves, play with your pets, practice some squats, walk to the backside of your house, water plants and return, etc. Whenever on phone calls, walk or stand, this also reduces your sitting time.

 
 

3) Walk More

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You can find more ways and reasons to walk. Apart from your scheduled 30 minutes or one-hour walk, you can walk or take a cycle to the nearby grocery store instead of motorized vehicles. If you stay in an apartment or go to a mall, you can opt for the stairs instead of elevators and escalators. Walking is something anyone can practice anytime and anywhere free of cost. If you are a newbie to regular walking, you can start with 15 to 20 minutes of walking initially and gradually add 10 minutes each week to engage one hour a day.

4) Get Active With Daily Activities

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Unknowingly, many of us would be already engaging in the required amount of exercise through daily household work. But for those who are being sedentary, achieving physical activity from your day-to-day activities can be a jump-start. Activities like gardening, cleaning, mopping, doing dishes, washing vehicles, drying clothes, mowing the lawn, walking your dog, etc., altogether make the best set of exercises. Both your body and house will benefit from this. Physically active people live longer with good health.

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Exercise solely does not mean just moving your limbs and body, walking, or running. There are diverse forms of physical activity that you can opt to keep away the cancer risk. You can dance, do strength training with heavy weights, or do sports activities like cycling, swimming, playing basketball, etc., or do flexibility training like yoga, tai chi, and pilates. At the end of the day, breathe more, sweat more, burn your calories, and stay active.


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