Exercise protects against breast cancer

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A large, 20-year observational study involving more than 44,700 black women across the U.S. has found that regular brisk exercise for a lifetime average of three or more hours a week had a 47 percent reduced risk of developing an aggressive subtype of breast cancer (estrogen receptor-negative (ER-) breast cancer), as compared to those exercising an average of one hour per week.

The research team, co-led by scientists at Boston University and Georgetown Lombardi Comprehensive Cancer Center, say this form of breast cancer is linked to both higher incidence and mortality in black women than white women.

"These findings are very encouraging. Knowing that exercise may protect against breast cancers that disproportionately strike black women is of great public health importance," Lucile Adams-Campbell, PhD, professor of oncology and associate director of Minority Health & Health Disparities Research at Georgetown Lombardi, was quoted as saying.

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