Sylvester Stallone, age 75, works out relentlessly on weight machines, using hand weights and his own body weight. Serena Williams, 40, does an intense lineup of arm, glute and core/leg exercises, designed to increase her metabolism and endurance. Good for them. But, it turns out, such over-the-top routines aren't necessary to reap one of the most important benefits of physical activity -- preventing cancer.
A report from the American Cancer Society says 46,000 cancer cases annually in the U.S. could be avoided if folks got just five hours of physical activity a week. And we're not talking running up stairs or bench pressing 200 pounds. What's needed is five hours of moderate-intensity activity -- brisk walking, water aerobics, riding a bike (the way most folks do it), doubles tennis, pushing a lawn mower, hiking or rollerblading.
The report, published in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise, shows that 16.9% of stomach cancers, 11.9% of endometrial cancers, 11% of kidney cancers, 9.3% of colon cancers, 8.1% of esophageal cancers, 6.5% of female breast cancers and 3.9% of urinary bladder cancers are associated with lack of exercise. So, opt for working out for one hour, five days a week. But remember all activity counts -- and adds up, as you aim for even more benefits from 10,000 steps a day or the equivalent.
If you can find seven hours a day to stare at a screen (that's U.S. adults' average), you can find an hour a day to live younger, longer, stronger.
Mehmet Oz, M.D. is host of "The Dr. Oz Show," and Mike Roizen, M.D. is Chief Wellness Officer Emeritus at Cleveland Clinic. To live your healthiest, tune into "The Dr. Oz Show" or visit sharecare.com.
(c)2021 Michael Roizen, M.D.
and Mehmet Oz, M.D.
King Features Syndicate