By your Fitness Trainers at Century Fitness 

Did you know that studies have indicated that about 25% of breast cancer diagnoses are attributed to physical inactivity?  The current theory is that moderate physical activity and exercise helps regulate hormones such as estrogen and insulin, which can fuel breast cancer growth.

As with many diseases and conditions, including breast cancer, regular exercise, healthy lifestyle, and good nutrition all help build a strong immune system.  A strong immune system works to fight off the growth of cancer cells.

Exercise and a proper diet both control body weight.  Staying lean lowers the risk of breast cancer in most post-menopausal women.  Appropriate exercise can also help patients manage side effects during and after treatment.  Side effects often include fatigue, general malaise, joint pain and even depression, which may be greatly reduced with exercise and good health habits.

A recent publication this year suggest that Breast Cancer survival rates are better with more muscle mass:  April 9 (UPI) — Breast cancer patients with higher muscle mass have a greater survival rate, according to a statistical analysis.  Doctors at Kaiser Permanente and the Dana Farber Cancer Institute in Boston tracked 3,241 women who were diagnosed with stage II or stage III breast cancer between 2000 and 2013, finding that age-related muscle loss and more fat were linked to a statistically lower survival rate. Their findings were published in the Journal of the American Medical Association Oncology.

“To our knowledge, this is the largest study to date of patients with nonmetastatic breast cancer, and we demonstrate that sarcopenia (muscle loss) is underrecognized, highly prevalent, and is associated with a significant increased risk of death,” wrote the researchers, who noted more than a third of newly diagnosed patients have sarcopenia. The average age of the study participants was 54.

Study participants who had sarcopenia, or age-related muscle loss, showed a 41 percent greater mortality rate, according to the statistical analysis by the researchers. And patients with the greatest amount of body fat, called adipose tissue, had a 35 percent higher rate. (The participants were followed up over six years…)

Sarcopenia was found in 1,086 patients, or 34 percent of participants. The survival rates were regardless of a woman’s age or cancer stage, the researchers said.

“Furthermore, we also show that sarcopenia and adiposity are both important risk factors and should be considered together when assessing risk…”

“In addition to weight loss, we should also consider interventions to improve muscle mass, such as resistance training or protein supplementation,” the researchers wrote. “In the era of precision medicine, the direct measurement of muscle and adiposity will help to guide treatment plans and interventions to optimize survival outcomes.”

This article is intended to be provide knowledge of general health and fitness principles and is not medical advice.  Please consult with a physician if you have questions.