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Exercise cuts cancer risk

According to a new study, men who exercise often are less likely to die from cancer than those who don't.
IANS | By HT Correspondent, London
UPDATED ON MAY 30, 2008 03:31 PM IST

Men who exercise often are less likely to die from cancer than those who don't, according to a new study.

The study was based on the effect of physical activity and cancer risk in 40,708 men aged between 45 and 79.

Over the seven-year period of the study, published in the British Journal of Cancer, 3,714 men developed cancer and 1,153 died.

Men who walked or cycled for at least 30 minutes daily increased survival from cancer with 33 percent, compared to those who exercised less or did nothing at all.

Researchers also found that a more extensive programme of walking and cycling between 60 and 90 minutes daily led to a l6 percent lower incidence of cancer.

But these activities only led to a five percent reduction in cancer rates among the men who walked or cycled for 30 minutes day, a finding that could be ascribed to chance.

The researchers surveyed the men on their lifestyle and the amount of their physical activity. They then scored these responses and compared the results with data officially recorded in a central cancer registry over a seven-year period.

“These results show for the first time, the effect that daily exercise has in reducing cancer death risk in men aged between 45 and 79,” said Alicja Wolk of the Swedish Medical University, who led the study.

“We looked at more moderate exercise such as housework, undertaken over a longer period and found that this also reduced men's chances of dying from the disease.”

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