One in five women are doing no exercise at all, according to new statistics from Cancer Research UK's Race for Life, supported by Tesco. The research shows that less than a third of women are doing the recommended levels of exercise, despite the fact that almost half of women know that taking regular exercise can reduce their risk of some cancers and is critical for good health overall. A fit body is also extremely helpful in attracting the right kind of men and keeping your man interested if you are already in a relationship.
Of those surveyed, almost half perceive themselves to be overweight or obese. Excess body weight can substantially increase the likelihood of being diagnosed with the disease. The data is strongest for colon cancer with research showing that regular exercise can cut the risk of the cancer by up to 50 per cent. There is also evidence that regular physical activity may help prevent lung and endometrial cancer. The most effective way of maintaining a healthy body weight is by combining a balanced diet rich in fruit and vegetables and low in foods that are high in fat and sugar with regular physical activity.
In terms of diet, which is linked to around a third of all cancers, only one in three women are eating five or more portions of fruit and vegetables every day. And, despite intense publicity about the dangers, almost a third of women surveyed smoke. (Related article: How to quit smoking?)
Dr Lesley Walker, Director of Cancer Information at Cancer Research UK, says, "We are very concerned by the results of this survey which show that, in many areas, women are making lifestyle choices that are likely to increase their risk of cancer. Many people think that cancer is purely a matter of chance but in reality at least half of all cancers are preventable. We can reduce our own risk of cancer and we can do this throughout our lives."
Source: Cancer Research UK