I try to eat right and watch my weight in order to prevent recurrence of breast cancer. What else can I do?

It’s great that you are interested in what you can do to manage your weight and prevent cancer recurrence. Nutrition and Exercise go hand in hand, kind of like salt and pepper.

Being a breast cancer survivor, how often have you heard that exercise is important to help decrease your chance of recurrence?   Hopefully most of you’ve heard it at least once, and if you haven’t, you’re hearing it now. The latest research has shown that regular exercise has a huge beneficial impact on your health, especially being a breast cancer survivor. Not only has it been linked to decreased breast cancer mortality (dying from breast cancer) but it also lowered the risk of overall mortality (dying from any other cause).

So how much exercise do you need to reap the benefits? The American Cancer Society (ACS) Guidelines on Nutrition and Physical Activity for Cancer Survivors recommend that breast cancer survivors AVOID BEING INACTIVE.   American Cancer Society recommends you start exercising as soon as you possibly can post surgery and/or treatment. Even during treatment I encourage light activity (short walks) to help combat fatigue and clear the mind. Once treatment is complete, and you’ve been given clearance from your physician, it is recommended that you gradually work up to 30 minutes or more of moderated aerobic activity (brisk walking or riding a stationary bike) on five or more days of the week.

Results presented from a large study of over 13,000 breast cancer survivors found that women meeting or exceeding the 150 minutes per week guideline had a TWENTY FIVE percent lower risk of dying from breast cancer and 27% lower risk of dying from any other causes. This was compared to breast cancer survivors who were less active.

It’s also recommended to add strength-training exercises twice per week for added benefits. This can be done via lifting weights, using exercise bands or other means. But, before attempting strength training, talk with your TurningPoint Physical Therapist. Your therapist can guide you in the right direction based on your current physical abilities.