Exercise may reduce risk of endometrial cancer

Women who exercise for 150 minutes a week or more may see a reduced risk of endometrial cancer, despite whether or not they are overweight, according to data presented at the Ninth Annual AACR Frontiers in Cancer Prevention Research Conference.

"This study is consistent with other studies that strongly support the association between physical activity and lower risk of endometrial cancer," said Hannah Arem, a doctoral student at Yale School of Public Health.

Arem and colleagues examined data collected from a case-control study led by Herbert Yu, M.D., M.Sc., Ph.D., associate professor at Yale School of Public Health. The study included 668 women with endometrial cancer and compared them to 665 age-matched control women.

Reduced risk of endometrial cancer

Those who exercised for 150 minutes a week or more had a 34% reduced risk of endometrial cancer compared with those women who were inactive.

This association was more pronounced among active women with a body mass index (BMI) less than 25, or underweight women, where the reduction in risk was 73% compared with inactive women with a BMI more than 25, or what is commonly considered overweight.

Although BMI showed a strong association with endometrial cancer, even women who were overweight, but still active, had a 52% lower risk.

"Clearly, programmes should be in place to increase the level of physical activity in women," said Arem. (EurekAlert/ November 2010)

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