Walking may significantly cut breast cancer risk
Women who walk for an hour a day may reduce their risk of breast cancer more than women who don’t, according to a new study.
The research, published in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention, is the first of its kind to show that reduced breast cancer risk is linked specifically to walking.
The study followed more than 73,000 women ages 50 to 74, who were recruited back in the 90’s by the American Cancer Society. The women were asked to fill out questionnaires on their health and activity levels, including how much they walked, swam and did aerobics and how much time they spent being sedentary. Participants filled out the same questionnaires every two years between 1997 and 2009.
Findings showed that women who said they walked for at least seven hours per week lowered their risk of breast cancer by 14 percent, compared to women who walked for three or fewer hours per week.
Dr. Alpa Patel, lead researcher of the study and a senior epidemiologist at the American Cancer Society, said the study suggests that promoting walking as a healthy activity could be an effective strategy for lowering breast cancer, especially among post-menopausal women.