Exercise and weight loss efforts significantly reduce risk of tumors

People who are obese and those who do not exercise are at an increased risk of developing colorectal cancer — one of the most common cancers worldwide. A recent study published in the American Journal of Physiology-Endocrinology and Metabolism found that exercise is an essential factor in reducing the risk of developing this type of cancer after weight loss. This is because physical activity causes positive changes in the bone marrow.

Obesity and lack of physical physical activity are risk factors for colorectal cancer. Earlier studies have shown that hematopoietic cells, which are cells in the bone marrow that produce blood cells, play a role in the development of cancerous tumors in the colon. In the current study, a team of researchers from the University of Ottawa in Canada and the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign aimed to determine how losing weight through diet and exercise affects these cells and reduces the risk of colorectal cancer. (Related: Obesity- A Cancer-Enhancing Risk Factor.)

To do this, they carried out a study on colorectal cancer in a mouse model. In conducting the study, they first fed mice — all of which were exposed to cancer cells — either with a control or a high-fat diet to make them obese. Then, they put them back to their regular diet for the rest of the study. The mice lost weight two months after going back to their usual diet. Now that the mice lost weight, the research team divided them into two groups. One group were exercised every day, while the other group remained sedentary.

The results of the study revealed that the group of mice that were exercised exhibited less inflammation and tumor formation after weight loss. The rate of tumor formation in this group was similar to that of control mice. On the other hand, the sedentary mice had higher levels of colon and bone marrow inflammation, even after weight loss. This group also displayed higher levels of fat tissue buildup in the bone marrow. In addition, being sedentary caused inflammation-causing changes in the hematopoietic cells. The research team explained that this is because obesity causes long-term changes in blood cell development and in the bone marrow microenvironment that remains even after weight loss.

Based on these findings, the research team suggested that exercise combined with dietary interventions can cut the risk of colorectal cancer in high-risk people.

What type of exercise halts tumor growth?

High-intensity interval training (HIIT) — a type of exercise that involves short bursts of intense, physical activity — can halt the progression of colon cancer cells, while also improve indicators of inflammation, according to a study published in the Journal of Physiology.

For the study, researchers at The University of Queensland in Australia and the University of Waterloo in Canada enrolled colorectal cancer survivors to complete either a single session of HIIT or 12 sessions within a month. They collected the participants’ blood samples either right after the single session of HIIT or at rest after a month of training to evaluate the growth of colon cancer cells.

The results showed that repeated exposure to the acute effects of HIIT may play a role in stopping colon cancer cell growth. The researchers saw specific increases in inflammation right after an acute bout of HIIT, which they believe contribute to the reduction of cancer cells. From these findings, they concluded that regular exercise and maintaining a physically active lifestyle are important in cancer prevention.

Read more news stories and studies on natural ways to fight cancer by going to AntiCancer.news.

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