Sedentary Behavior and its Link to Breast Cancer

0 comments / Posted on by Daniel Tahany

Isn’t it nice to lounge around while working - having that comfortable chair supporting your back throughout that busy shift at work? No matter how comfy it may seem, ladies and gents beware - for too much sitting at work is hazardous to your health, as studies have linked prolonged sitting with increased risk of breast cancer, one of the most common forms of cancer among women.

In 2011, a total of 76 studies on the association between physical activity and breast cancer risk on both genders have been investigated by Loprinzi. Physical activity was measured during leisure time, transportation, household, and occupational settings.  Results yield that 53% were found to give physical activity a protective effect against breast cancer risk, with 37% yielding a non-significant risk reduction, and 10% having no evidence for the correlation between physical activity and breast cancer risk.

That doesn’t stop there, being physically active does NOT mean stretching your arms and legs every once in a while.  Regular physical activity is recommended at an early age to further decrease the risk of breast cancer - especially if you have other risk factors such as a family history of breast cancer, overweight BMI, and being beyond the menopausal age. But what makes physical activity so important for decreasing your risk of contracting breast cancer?  The exertion of physical activity controls certain factors that greatly affect the production of cancer cells affecting your breasts.

 Innovators have found the answer to sedentary jobs by developing stand up desks that can be adjusted according to the worker’s preferred height. These desks provide the option to be active while being productive at the same time. A worker’s routine is not interrupted as the desk can easily slide up and back down by a simple touch of a button.

Other alternatives to being active at work includes doing period stretches for a few minutes, using your breaks to walk around a bit, some good old fashioned stair-climbing instead of using the elevator, or even enjoying the way to work by walking to clear your mind and keeping those muscles active to complete 150-minutes moderate activity or 75-minutes high activity per week.  Observing the food we eat and living healthy can also help decrease the risk of cancer. Aside from that, regular cancer screening - such as getting a mammogram for early detection plays an important role to help cancer development prevention. Take a stand against breast cancer today! 

Reference:

Loprinzi, P.D., Cardinal, B.J., Smit, E., & Winters-Stone, K.M. (2011). Physical activity and breast cancer
risk. Journal of Exercise, Science & Fitness 10 (2012) 1-7.

 

 

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