Research now confirms what athletes such as distance runner Bob Tyson learned years ago after he refused to give up after being told he had cancer: exercise can help battle cancer.
For those diagnosed with cancer, exercise has helps to enhance physical fitness, improve stamina, works to relieve mental distress, increases tolerance for chemotherapy and other aggressive treatments and may increase the chances of survival with some types of cancer, such as colon, prostate and breast cancer.
Physical Fitness lessens muscle weakness and bone damage caused by chemotherapy.
By being physically fit, a cancer patient has the advantage of having developed stamina which alleviates the fatigue resulting from cancer treatments. Continued exercise also helps in the fight against muscle weakness throughout the body caused by chemotherapy. Importantly, it mitigates damage to the heart muscle from chemotherapy since the heart muscles are strengthened by regular physical activity. And, because bones are strengthened with exercise, the loss of bone density from chemotherapy is also reduced in a physically active person.
Exercising improves mental attitude
Because the fatigue and weakness caused by chemotherapy decrease when cancer patients exercise regularly, these people are less likely to feel discouraged about their condition. Exercise has been proven to alleviate anxiety and depression because it causes a release of feel-good endorphins or natural brain chemicals that enhance a person’s sense of well-being. Exercise helps to take people’s minds off their worries, lessening the negative thoughts that bring on depression and stress, two conditions that can be harmful.
Cardio and weight training help prevent other diseases and the reoccurrence of cancer
Both cardio and weight-bearing exercises should continue after a cancer patient enters remission because cancer survivors are at risk of other diseases including heart disease and diabetes. Not only does exercise help prevent the likelihood of contracting these diseases, but it has also been proven to be instrumental in preventing the reoccurrence of cancer. To maintain an exercise routine, a cancer survivor should engage in the whatever activities they enjoyed the most. If having an exercise partner is important, then setting up a routine with a friend or joining a gym or a running club are good ideas.