Get Out and Exercise
I have written before about studies suggesting the value of exercise for women who have had breast cancer. I am writing this morning after my daily 45 minutes at the gym--and can promise you that I never like getting out of bed and lacing up my sneakers. I have learned that going first thing in the morning, before I have a chance to reconsider, is the only way for me to get there. I admire people who can exercise after work, but, by the end of the day, I just want to come home.
Anyway, this is the abstract re a recent meta-analysis by Ibrahim and Al-Hamaidh that reinforces the importance of physical activity. They found that the risk of death from breast cancer is reduced by 34% in women who regularly exercise. If that is not enough to get you moving, I don't know what would be. Here it is
Physical activity and survival after breast cancer diagnosis: meta-analysis of published studies
Journal Medical Oncology
Publisher Humana Press Inc.
ISSN 1357-0560 (Print) 1559-131X (Online)
Category Original Paper
Ezzeldin M. Ibrahim1 and Abdelaziz Al-Homaidh2
(1) Oncology Center, International Medical Center, PO Box 2172, Jeddah, 21451, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
(2) Prince Sultan Cancer Center, Riyadh, Kingdom of Saudi Arabia
Published data have shown that physical activity (PA) has a positive role on the primary prevention of breast cancer risk. However, the role of PA on breast cancer outcome has been controversial with inconsistent data. The lack of a meta-analysis that addresses that issue prompted the current report. A comprehensive literature search identified eight studies, of which two studies were excluded.
The remaining six studies (12,108 patients with breast cancer) were included in this meta-analysis. Pre-diagnosis PA reduced all causes mortality by 18% but had no effect on breast cancer deaths.
Post-diagnosis PA reduced breast cancer deaths by 34% (HR = 0.66, 95% CI, 0.57-0.77, P < 0.00001), all causes mortality by 41% (HR = 0.59, 95% CI, 0.53-0.65, P < 0.00001), and disease recurrence by 24% (HR = 0.76, 95% CI, 0.66-0.87, P = 0.00001).
Breast cancer mortality was reduced by pre-diagnosis PA in women with body mass index (BMI) < 25 kg/m2, while post-diagnosis PA reduced that risk among those with BMI ! 25 kg/m2. On the other hand, post-diagnosis PA reduced all causes mortality regardless of the BMI. The analysis showed that post-diagnosis PA reduced breast cancer deaths (HR = 0.50, 95% CI, 0.34-0.74, P = 0.0005), and all causes mortality (HR = 0.36, 95% CI, 0.12-1.03, P = 0.06) among patients with estrogen receptor (ER)-positive tumor, while women with ER-negative disease showed no gain. The current meta-analysis provides evidence for an inverse relationship between PA and mortality in patients with breast cancer and supports the notion that appropriate PA should be embraced by breast cancer survivors.