Walking reduces cancer risk
New research has found that more than 10,000 cases of breast and bowel cancer could be prevented each year with brisk walks or by performing vigorous household chores.
Even though the statistics are for the UK, there’s no reason to believe that they wouldn’t be true for India.
Walking for an hour daily or doing housework for four hours a day reduced the risk of endometrial cancer by 30%, according to a study by researchers from the Vanderbilt University Medical Center in Nashville and the Shanghai Cancer Institute.
Interestingly, risks weren’t reduced by biking. n Walking reduces colon cancer risk (40% reduction in women), according to a large study of Scandinavian men and women.
Walking improves cancer survival
n Frequent brisk walks may help lower the risk of cancer progression in men undergoing prostate cancer treatment, says a study by researchers from the California, San Francisco and Harvard Universities.
They found that those who walked at least 3 mph (approx. 5 kmph) for at least three hours per week, had a 60 % reduction in recurrence or the need for a second round of prostate cancer treatment. n Women who walk one to three hours per week after being diagnosed with breast cancer improve their survival rate by 20 to 50%, says the Nurse’s Health Study.
Exercise need not be overly cumbersome to be helpful. A regular walk can boost your overall health. Here are a few things you can do get the best benefits.
Every step counts. So walk as much as you can. Getting off a stop earlier, if you are using public transport, or stopping your vehicle at a reasonable distance from your dropoff point are all ways in which you can reap the benefits of walking while you go about your everyday tasks.
Be safe. On the main road, I suggest walking on the side of the road that has you facing traffic, so that you know what’s coming towards you and can take prompt action if required.
Experience the joy. Walking in a park or a place of natural beauty has the added benefit of feeding your soul and mind. Forget power walking for a while, just take a leisurely stroll: stop along the way to smell the roses or listen to the birds. It is the best way to meditate and to realign yourself.
Walk with a friend. You can both talk and motivate each other to continue walking n Walk for life. Walks or runs are a great way to bond, build solidarity and spread the word on causes. Since 2008, CanSupport has been holding an annual walk in New Delhi which, amongst other things, is intended to illustrate that a walk can be fun, that it need not be solitary, that it can help you bond with family and friends and make you feel good as you raise money for a cause (cancer). See you at the walk, friends!