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October is Breast Cancer Awareness Month, and while the statistics for this disease are still pretty scary (see chart below), the good news is that you’re already on the right track for prevention. Here are just a few of the ways your healthy Oxygen lifestyle is fighting cancer — right this minute:
• Inflammation plays a role in about 20 percent of cancer growth, but exercise is an anti-inflammatory, helping reduce chronic inflammation and boosting your immune system.
• High insulin levels are thought to play a role in tumor growth by stimulating cells to multiply and by inhibiting other cells from dying, but active women have lower glucose and insulin levels, reducing their risk for developing cancer.
• Women who exercised 10 to 19 hours per week were found in one study to have about a 30 percent lower risk of developing breast cancer than inactive women.
• Body fat produces hormones that speed abnormal cell growth, as occurs when a cancer grows. By exercising and shedding body fat, you reduce the amount of hormones being released and reduce the chance for dangerous cells to grow and thrive.
• Fat cells also produce estrogen, and extra estrogen present in the body can mean an increase in the risk of breast cancer development. Exercise may alter the activity of your body’s enzymes, which can affect the way estrogen is broken down into harmless byproducts.