CAPE GIRARDEAU, MO (KFVS) - A new study focuses on the correlation between exercise and cancer mortality rates.
"It specifically looked at breast cancer and it found a 40 percent reduction in breast cancer when exercise was adopted in a healthier lifestyle," said Dr. Olivia Aranha with Saint Francis Medical Center.
Dr. Aranha said this means walking the recommended seven miles a week could help prevent breast cancer and may improve the chance of survival for those already diagnosed.
Seven miles may seem like a daunting number, but personal trainer Carlen Mulholland says it can be a simple and pain-free task.
"It's not as difficult as what people think when you say putting 7 miles in," said Mulholland. "In fact the time spent doing exercise, if you look at the amount of time people spend watching TV or doing other stuff, you could easily take that time and put it into walking."
But if exercise is new to your routine, both Dr. Aranha and Mulholland said it's important to pace yourself.
Focus on gradually building up endurance.
"Well that's where tips of working with a buddy or having someone that you're accountable to really comes into play," said Mulholland. "Cause I can say I'm going to go out and walk seven miles, but you're more likely to do stuff if you know you have someone there and waiting for you to come out and walk."
Dr. Aranha said the positive impact of exercise is evidenced by some of her patients.
Those who are more physically active typically respond better to treatment and it helps in their recovery process.
"What I've seen with my patients is that the ones that exercise they just do better with chemotherapy, they have lesser side effects with anti-cancer therapy. They also do remarkably better recovering and during rehab from chemotherapy, radiation, as well as surgery," said Dr. Aranha.