Being Active and Cancer

(1) “Nutrition and Physical Activity Guidelines for Cancer Survivors”

A page of info on this topic from the American Cancer Society  LINK

(2) “How Exercise May Aid Cancer Treatment”

From spring 2015, in the New York Times  LINK

  • … exercise and chemotherapy each had slowed tumor growth. The group that had exercised had smaller tumors than did the sedentary mice. So did the animals that had received the chemotherapy drug
  • However the mice that simultaneously had exercised and received chemotherapy showed the best outcome, with the smallest tumors by a significant margin.
  • That result suggests, Dr. Dewhirst says, that exercise had made the breast cancer tumors in the mice more amenable to the chemotherapy. By making the tumors less hypoxic — and paradoxically healthier, he says — exercise “also had made those tumors easier to kill.”  

NOTE: this is a small preliminary study, and was done with mice – not studied in people.

(3) Study re: physical activity and cognitive function:

This study showed a correlation of higher levels of physical activity with faster mental processing speeds. (correlation does not prove causation)

“Objectively measured physical activity and cognitive functioning in breast cancer survivors.”   LINK to Full Text

  • “Moderate-to-vigorous physical activity (MVPA) was associated with Information Processing Speed.”
  • “Light-intensity physical activity was not significantly associated with any of the measured domains of cognitive function.”
  • “Conclusion: MVPA may have favorable effects on Information Processing Speed in breast cancer survivors, particularly among overweight or obese women.
  • Detailed Conclusion: “In conclusion, engagement in physical activity equivalent to intensity of brisk walking or jogging appears to be associated with enhanced information processing; however the association is modest and may be influenced by other lifestyle factors, such as weight status. In contrast, time spent engaging in light-intensity activities was not related to any of the cognitive domains measured in this study. These data suggest that physical activity interventions specifically targeting MVPA may be able to enhance aspects of cognitive function among breast cancer survivors, particularly women who are overweight or obese. Additional insights from prospective and experimental studies examining the impact of MVPA on cognitive domains in normal and overweight/obese breast cancer survivors are needed to clarify these relationships.”

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