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Exercise can cut colon cancer risk

13th February 2009

Researchers in the United States say that taking exercise can slash the risk of the most common form of bowel cancer by a quarter.


In a review of 52 previous studies, scientists found that the most active people were 24% less likely to develop colon cancer than the least active.

In their findings published in the British Journal of Cancer, the research team led by Kathleen Wolin of the Washington University School of Medicine in St Louis, said many different types of physical activity showed similar benefits.

Occupational activity like manual labour together with leisure activities like running or going to the gym were equally beneficial, they said.

Wolin said the results provided a reliable calculation of the positive effect that exercise could have on reducing colon cancer risk.

She said she hoped the research would further encourage people to enjoy a healthy, active lifestyle.

It may eventually be possible to give individuals a detailed breakdown of how they could reduce their chances of cutting their risk of bowel cancer tailored to their own specific circumstances.

In the UK alone, 100 people are diagnosed with bowel cancer every day.

Experts called for greater measures to prevent cancer.

According to Sara Hiom, director of health information at Cancer Research UK, around half of all cancers could be prevented by changes to lifestyle.

She said that maintaining a healthy body weight was one of the best ways to lower the risk of bowel and other cancers.

Lifestyle changes could potentially avoid around 13,000 cancer cases annually in the UK.


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Article Information

Title: Exercise can cut colon cancer risk
Author: Luisetta Mudie
Article Id: 10193
Date Added: 13th Feb 2009


BBC News

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