Tuesday 20 February 2018

Reducing your cancer risks

Taking exercise can reduce your risk of cancer
Taking exercise can reduce your risk of cancer

Taking up exercise and keeping trim are the most important lifestyle changes to help reduce the risk of breast cancer returning, according to a new review.

Every year, around 2,600 women in Ireland are diagnosed with breast cancer and 660 women die from the disease - while survival rates are increasing, relapsing is a risk.

The new review, published in the Canadian Medical Journal Review, suggested that following the recommended - 150 minutes of moderate or 75 minutes of vigorous exercise per week - along with two to three weekly sessions of strength training can help reduce the risk of breast cancer returning and death from the disease.

They could not say whether alcohol consumption affects breast cancer outcomes or not.

However, reducing alcohol consumption to one or fewer drinks per day reduces the risk of a new (not recurring) breast cancer.

Moderate increases in dietary vitamin C or oral supplementation may reduce breast cancer mortality. But randomised controlled trials are needed to confirm this.

Most patients would benefit from vitamin D supplementation, at least to optimise bone health.

Experts say it is a helpful summary of recent research into how lifestyle changes impact on risk but it also has some limitations.

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