Physical Fitness: Giving Cancer Patients a Leg Up

While most people think that exercise is just good for those looking to get in shape or to increase performance in sports, training can be extremely beneficial for many other applications such as fighting a disease like cancer.

Today I want to share a blog post from Melanie Bowen who joined the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance in 2011 as an awareness advocate for natural health and cancer cure initiatives. In this blog post Melanie discusses the importance of physical activity for cancer patients. Check it out and please share this with anyone who can benefit from this information.

Physical Fitness: Giving Cancer Patients a Leg Up
by Melanie Bowen

Physical fitness is an important part of health for everyone. Cancer patients and survivors need to pay even closer attention to their personal health habits. Whether you are undergoing treatment for breast or testicular cancer, have recently been diagnosed with mesothelioma or are currently cancer-free after a fight for your life, staying fit may increase your chances for survival.

Exercise elevates the mood, adds energy and lowers cholesterol, so it’s easy to see why exercise is especially helpful for cancer patients and survivors. Unfortunately, a recent study by Mayo Clinic indicates that many cancer patients are hesitant to exercise, and few will even discuss it with their oncologists. Since other studies indicate that regular exercise can reduce the recurrence of cancer by as much as 50 percent, awareness clearly needs to increase concerning this issue.

If you were a regular at the gym or worked out regularly on your own before your cancer diagnosis, you may find that during treatment you have to slow down from your accustomed pace. If you simply haven’t made exercise a part of your life up to this point, it is vital to begin incorporating physical activity into your routine. Accommodations may need to be made to help you stay or get physically fit, but doing nothing shouldn’t be an option.

Generally, 30 minutes of physical activity each day is recommended. During treatment, feel free to incorporate accommodations to help you keep moving without wearing yourself down. If walking for 30 minutes at one time is too much for you, break your physical exercise up into shorter segments. For example, make a point of doing a little physical activity for 10 minutes three different times during the day. If you enjoy spending time outdoors, take a walk in the park where plenty of benches or other resting places can be found, and give yourself permission to rest whenever necessary.

If you have questions about your level of physical fitness or what exercise routine would be best for you, talk with your doctor or oncology staff. Work together to develop a plan that will both benefit and stimulate you.

About the Author
Melanie Bowen joined the Mesothelioma Cancer Alliance in 2011 as an awareness advocate for natural health and cancer cure initiatives. You will often find her highlighting the great benefits of alternative nutritional, emotional, and physical treatments on those diagnosed with cancer or other serious illness. Melanie also assists in social media outreach in her efforts to spread awareness. In her spare time, you can find Melanie trying new vegan recipes, on her yoga mat, or spending time with her family.

You can follow Melanie through FacebookTwitterGoogle+ and email her at mbowen@mesothelioma.com.