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Ladies, Move It!
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Woman walking in the mountains
Photo: Paco Sancho
Participants at a recent International Research Conference on Food, Nutrition, and Cancer in Washington, D.C., heralded some good news in the fight against cancer.

1. Being physically active may be more important than body weight or body fat to your risk of breast cancer. Leslie Bernstein, Ph.D., professor of preventive medicine and cancer researcher at the University of Southern California, said that in a study of postmenopausal women, those who exercised nearly four hours a week saw their breast cancer risk drop more than 50 percent. Exercise offers benefits even after menopause by reducing circulating estrogen as well as body fat.

2. Failing to limit adult weight gain may account for up to one third of all breast cancers. Henry J. Thompson, Ph.D., director of the Cancer Prevention Laboratory at Colorado State University, found that weight gain of more than 11 pounds as an adult, along with getting less than 30 minutes of physical activity per day, is linked to increased risk of breast cancer.

3. Eating protective foods together seems to boost their cancer-protective effects. John W. Erdman, Jr., Ph.D., professor of nutrition at the University of Illinois, found that a diet consisting of a variety of fruits, vegetables, whole grains, and beans offered the greatest anticancer effect. “Supplements,” he added, “cannot provide the synergistic action you get from whole foods.”

Environmental Nutrition

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Reprinted with permission from Vibrant Life, March/April 2005. Copyright © 2006 by GraceNotes. All rights reserved. Use of this material is subject to usage guidelines.


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