Doctors have at times advised cancer patients to avoid exercise due to fears that it might worsen their condition. However, recent research has shown that exercise can actually have a number of benefits for cancer patients.
People with cancer often experience a wide range of symptoms that can make everyday activities a challenge. Fatigue, pain, and anxiety are just a few of the symptoms that can make it difficult to get moving. Exercise, however, has proved itself to be an effective intervention. It can help reduce fatigue, improve pain tolerance, and ease anxiety.
In addition, exercise has a positive impact on overall physical health. While it may seem like the last thing one may want to do when feeling lousy, getting moving can make a huge difference. And this doesn’t have to mean going to the gym or running a marathon to reap the benefits of exercise.
Something as simple as a daily walk can make a difference. If you’re looking for ways to ease cancer symptoms, give exercise a try. You may be surprised at how much better you feel!
New research on the benefits of exercise for cancer patients
Recent research has revealed that even a single session of exercise can elevate anti-cancer proteins. Scientists call these myokines, and even advanced prostate cancer cases can reap their benefits. In fact, one of their primary benefits is that they suppress tumor growth.
New research has unveiled that regular exercise over a period of six months can change a cancer patient’s bodily chemical environment. Meaning that they can suppress the growth of cancer cells with exercise.
Furthermore, the myokine proteins we mentioned earlier, which are produced in skeletal muscles can even help to directly fight cancerous cells. That is to say, they can activate a variety of anti-cancer processes in a patient’s body.
The aforementioned study showed that a single bout of intensive exercise over a period of around 30 minutes can raise the levels of myokines. Which according to their calculations suppressed the growth of prostate cancer cells by about 17%. However, the levels of myokines returned to normality following the next 30 minutes. This implies that regular exercise over a long period of time would be most beneficial.
In fact, scientists have realized that this might explain why cancer patients who exercise regularly tend to show a slower progression of cancer and tend to live longer.
Not a cure, but a tool to extend the life of advanced cancer cases
As beneficial as exercise is to cancer patients, and all people at large, it is not a cure for cancer. What research has shown is that it will suppress the growth of cancer and slow its development. However, even with said exercise, without intervention, someone with advanced cancer would still succumb to it.
Yet, this does confirm that exercise gives people with advanced or late-stage cancer a way to extend their lives. Evidence shows that physical activity will extend a cancer patient’s survival and all thanks to the myokine proteins it produces.
How much exercise is enough?
Research has not yet reached a conclusion on how much exercise would be optimal. However, researchers estimate over 20 minutes of activity each day would likely suffice. And it would be best for this activity to include resistance training, to help develop musculature.
Above all, regularity is the prime factor. Engaging in physical activity most days if not daily is what has shown to be most beneficial. Since this will keep a patient’s chemical environment high in cancer-suppressing proteins.
Check our resources section for further information. Where we can even help you connect with a prostate cancer survivor.
If you have any questions, or just want to talk, call us at our toll-free hotline: 1(833)HEAL-MEN. You are not alone in this journey. We are here to help guide and support you through it, every step of the way.