Being slim not enough to ward off breast cancer, being fit doesMenu
Being slim is not enough to ward off breast cancer. According to experts, it’s exercise that is crucial — whatever your weight. A study has found that being unfit raises a woman’s risk of the disease, whether she is fat or thin.
The researchers warned that women who are slim should not be complacent, because it is also important to be active. Even ordinary, everyday activities such as carrying the shopping home and playing with children will help.
Analysis showed odds of developing the disease were clearly linked to how active they were. Those who did the least exercise were 40 per cent more likely to have developed breast cancer than those who did the most. Crucially, the link with exercise applied whatever their weight.
“You can still reduce your risk of breast cancer by being physically active, even if you are of normal weight,” said Ylva Trolle Lagerros, an obesity doctor from the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm.
She added that women did not necessarily need to sweat it out in the gym to see a benefit — everyday activities such as walking to work, playing with children and gardening all count.
“Your body doesn’t really care if you are carrying groceries home or if you are at the gym, it is the total amount of exercise in the day that matters, independent of where you get it,” she added.
However, weight is still an important factor. The study found that being overweight raised a woman’s risk of the disease, even if she exercised. Being obese raised the odds of breast cancer by 58 per cent, while merely being overweight increased the likelihood by 20 per cent.
“It all goes to show that sitting around is really bad for you, even if you are slim.”
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