Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Girls, Young Women Can Cut Risk Of Early Breast Cancer Through Regular Exercise

Date:
May 14, 2008
Source:
Washington University School of Medicine
Summary:
Mothers, here's another reason to encourage your daughters to be physically active: Girls and young women who exercise regularly between the ages of 12 and 35 have a substantially lower risk of breast cancer before menopause compared to those who are less active, new research shows.

Mothers, here's another reason to encourage your daughters to be physically active: Girls and young women who exercise regularly between the ages of 12 and 35 have a substantially lower risk of breast cancer before menopause compared to those who are less active, new research shows.

In the largest and most detailed analysis to date of the effects of exercise on premenopausal breast cancer, the study of nearly 65,000 women found that those who were physically active had a 23 percent lower risk of breast cancer before menopause. In particular, high levels of physical activity from ages 12 to 22 contributed most strongly to the lower breast cancer risk.

The study is by researchers at Washington University School of Medicine in St. Louis and Harvard University in Boston."We don't have a lot of prevention strategies for premenopausal breast cancer, but our findings clearly show that physical activity during adolescence and young adulthood can pay off in the long run by reducing a woman's risk of early breast cancer," says lead investigator Graham Colditz, M.D., Dr.P.H., the Niess-Gain Professor and associate director of Prevention and Control at the Siteman Cancer Center at Washington University School of Medicine and Barnes-Jewish Hospital. "This is just one more reason to encourage young girls and women to exercise regularly."

One-fourth of all breast cancers are diagnosed in women before menopause. Numerous studies have shown that physical activity reduces the risk of postmenopausal breast cancer, but the few studies that have looked at the influence of exercise on breast cancer risk before menopause have produced conflicting results.

For the current analysis, researchers examined data on a subset of women enrolled in the Nurses' Health Study II, a prospective study of registered nurses ages 24 to 42. These 64,777 women had filled out detailed annual questionnaires about their levels of physical activity from age 12 on. After six years of follow-up, 550 women had been diagnosed with breast cancer.

The researchers found the age-adjusted incidence rates for invasive breast cancer dropped from 194 cases per 100,000 person-years in the least active women to 136 cases in the most active. The levels of physical activity reported by the most active women were the equivalent of running 3.25 hours a week or walking 13 hours a week. The benefit of exercise was not linked to a particular sport or intensity but related to total activity.

"You don't have to be a marathon runner to get the risk-reducing benefits of exercise," Colditz adds.

One leading theory to explain the lower risk of breast cancer among active young women is that exercise reduces their exposure to estrogens. Numerous studies have shown that the more estrogen a woman is exposed to, the greater her risk for breast cancer. Thus, women who begin menstruating later or enter menopause early have a lower risk of breast cancer. And young women who are physically active are more likely to start their periods later and less likely to have regular cycles when they begin their periods.

The research was funded by grants from the National Cancer Institute and the American Cancer Society.


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by Washington University School of Medicine. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal Reference:

  1. Maruit SS, Willett WC, Feskanich D, Rosner B, Colditz GA. A prospective study of age-specific physical activity and premenopausal breast cancer. Journal of the National Cancer Institute. May 13, 2008 (advance online publication).

Cite This Page:

Washington University School of Medicine. "Girls, Young Women Can Cut Risk Of Early Breast Cancer Through Regular Exercise." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 14 May 2008. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/05/080513171443.htm>.
Washington University School of Medicine. (2008, May 14). Girls, Young Women Can Cut Risk Of Early Breast Cancer Through Regular Exercise. ScienceDaily. Retrieved July 22, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/05/080513171443.htm
Washington University School of Medicine. "Girls, Young Women Can Cut Risk Of Early Breast Cancer Through Regular Exercise." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2008/05/080513171443.htm (accessed July 22, 2014).

Share This




More Health & Medicine News

Tuesday, July 22, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

Gilead's $1000-a-Pill Drug Could Cure Hep C in HIV-Positive People

TheStreet (July 21, 2014) New research shows Gilead Science's drug Sovaldi helps in curing hepatitis C in those who suffer from HIV. In a medical study, the combination of Gilead's Hep C drug with anti-viral drug Ribavirin cured 76% of HIV-positive patients suffering from the most common hepatitis C strain. Hepatitis C and related complications have been a top cause of death in HIV-positive patients. Typical medication used to treat the disease, including interferon proteins, tended to react badly with HIV drugs. However, Sovaldi's %1,000-a-pill price tag could limit the number of patients able to access the treatment. TheStreet's Keris Lahiff reports from New York. Video provided by TheStreet
Powered by NewsLook.com
$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

$23.6 Billion Awarded To Widow In Smoking Lawsuit

Newsy (July 20, 2014) Cynthia Robinson claims R.J. Reynolds Tobacco Company hid the health and addiction risks of its products, leading to the death of her husband in 1996. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Tooth Plaque Provides Insight Into Diets Of Ancient People

Tooth Plaque Provides Insight Into Diets Of Ancient People

Newsy (July 19, 2014) Research on plaque from ancient teeth shows that our prehistoric ancestor's had a detailed understanding of plants long before developing agriculture. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Contaminated Water Kills 3 Babies in South African Town

Contaminated Water Kills 3 Babies in South African Town

AFP (July 18, 2014) Contaminated water in South Africa's northwestern town of Bloemhof kills three babies and hospitalises over 500 people. The incident highlights growing fears over water safety in South Africa. Duration: 02:22 Video provided by AFP
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:

Breaking News:
from the past week

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile: iPhone Android Web
Follow: Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe: RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins