Tie up those laces! Cardio fitness reduces risk of bowel and lung cancer

Studies have claimed doing regular cardio exercise has a significant impact on the chances of developing certain types of cancer. Source: Getty

It’s time to pull out the sneakers from the back of the cupboard and tie up those laces because according to researchers fitting in a regular run or walk will significantly reduce the risk of developing a potentially deadly disease.

Cardio fitness may not be everyone’s cup of tea but a new study by the John Hopkins School of Medicine and published in Wiley Online Library has found it’s the key to lowering the chance of bowel and lung cancer.
Scientists also discovered those that were quite fit and had still developed cancer were less likely to die from the disease than people with low fitness levels.

To come to this conclusion researchers followed the health journey of 49,143 adults who underwent exercise stress testing from 1991 to 2009.

Those noted as having high fitness levels were recorded as having a whopping 77 per cent decreased risk of developing lung cancer and a 61 per cent decreased risk of developing bowel cancer.

Meanwhile, participants who developed lung cancer and had a high level of fitness had a 44 per cent decreased risk of dying from the disease after undergoing treatment.

As for those who developed bowel cancer and were relatively fit, there was an 89 per cent decreased risk of death.

The latest news follows reports last month eating meat within official guidelines can put people in danger of developing bowel cancer.

Official guidelines state that weekly red meat intake should fall within 500g in New Zealand, and 455g in Australia, but the recent study suggested this could still be too high.

The study, published in the International Journal of Epidemiologyalso found every bottle of beer or small glass of wine could raise the risk of bowel cancer. In contrast, fibre from breads and breakfast cereals was found to lower the risk.

Researchers analysed 2,609 cases of colorectal cancer in the United Kingdom and found people who consumed an average of 76 grams of red and processed meat daily had a 20 per cent higher risk of a bowel cancer diagnosis than those who ate just 21 grams daily.

Read more: Ditch the steak! The small amount of red meat ‘increasing bowel cancer risk’

“This study shows we could prevent some of these cancers by changing our diets, consuming less red and processed meat and alcohol, and more whole grains,” lead author Dr Kathryn Bradbury said in a statement.

“Think less beer and bacon, more bran and brown bread.”

The latest Australian stats show 5,375 people died of bowel cancer in 2016 and there were 15,604 new cases of bowel cancer in Australia in 2015. Meanwhile, researchers found the risk of developing bowel cancer rose 19 per cent with every 25 grams of processed meat. This is equal to a slice of ham or rasher of bacon.

What are your thoughts on the study? Do you do regular cardio exercise?

IMPORTANT LEGAL INFO This article is of a general nature and FYI only, because it doesn’t take into account your personal health requirements or existing medical conditions. That means it’s not personalised health advice and shouldn’t be relied upon as if it is. Before making a health-related decision, you should work out if the info is appropriate for your situation and get professional medical advice.

Join the community that will get you through the hard times ahead.

Starts at 60 is the community you need when Covid-19 is changing life as we know it. We stick together, help each other, share information and have a whole lot of fun online.

Join for interactive online events, expert advice, timely news, great deals and community conversation.

Leave your comment

Please sign in to post a comment.
Retrieving conversation…
Stories that matter
Emails delivered daily
Sign up