New Study Shows Physical Activity Can Prevent Cancer: New York Bone and Joint Specialists' Dr. Leon Popovitz Comments

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National Cancer Institute Conducts 11 Year Study; New York Bone and Joint Specialists' Dr. Leon Popovitz Comments

NY Bone and Joint Specialists NYC

NY Bone and Joint Specialists NYC

“Bottom line is that we need to move more and avoid extended stasis and incorporate a standard level of exercise or leisure activity,” says Dr. Leon Popovitz, an orthopedic surgeon and co-founder of New York Bone and Joint Specialists.

A landmark study has been published this week in the Journal of the American Medical Association and concluded that physical activity is associated with a lowered risk of 26 different types of cancers. More remarkably, this lowered risk of cancer even applies to smokers and those overweight.

The study was headed by Steven C. Moore, Ph.D. of the National Cancer Institute (part of the National Institutes of Health) and the focus is part of the population-wide cancer prevention and control efforts. This study utilized 1.44 million people between the ages of 19 and 98 throughout the USA and Europe. The partakers were followed for an average of 11 years and during that time period a total of 187,000 new cases of cancer occurred. The study reported:

“The investigators confirmed that leisure-time physical activity, as assessed by self-reported surveys, was associated with a lower risk of colon, breast, and endometrial cancers. They also determined that leisure-time physical activity was associated with a lower risk of 10 additional cancers, with the greatest risk reductions for esophageal adenocarcinoma, liver cancer, cancer of the gastric cardia, kidney cancer, and myeloid leukemia. Myeloma and cancers of the head and neck, rectum, and bladder also showed reduced risks that were significant, but not as strong. Risk was reduced for lung cancer, but only for current and former smokers; the reasons for this are still being studied.”

Leisure-time physical activity is defined as exercise done “at one’s own discretion” and includes walking, running, swimming and other moderate to vigorous intensity activities. The average duration of activity in the study was 150 minutes per week. This level of activity mirrors, for overall good health, the Physical Activity Guidelines for Americans, issued by the US Department of Health and Human Services (HHS). They recommended at least 150 minutes of moderate aerobic activity per week. Alternatively, one can do 75 minutes of vigorous activity per week. In addition, strength training is recommended twice per week but no specific time for these sessions are detailed.

“Bottom line is that we need to move more and avoid extended stasis and incorporate a standard level of exercise or leisure activity,” says Dr. Leon Popovitz, an orthopedic surgeon and co-founder of New York Bone and Joint Specialists. “To start, aerobic activity is crucial. This is activity that causes an increase in heart rate. The simplest option is brisk walking. This is a terrific start for someone that does not routinely participate in exercise or has an aversion.”

As your fitness level progresses Dr. Popovitz suggests incorporating other elements into the routine. “Added strength training may sound uninteresting for those that do not enjoy going to the gym,” he says. “But this does not have to be bench pressing hundreds of pounds amongst bloated weight trainers that spend every day in the gym. A good start is using some light weights at home and devoting just a few minutes 2 or 3 times per week.”

For older adults with chronic conditions that preclude them from maximizing the recommendations, Dr. Popovitz suggests maintaining an active routine that does not exacerbate any injuries but recommends older patients consult a specialist before proceeding. “The crucial message that everyone should hold on to for all our lives is to keep moving. Stagnation breeds disease,” warns Dr. Popovitz.

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About NY Bone and Joint Specialists
NY Bone and Joint Specialists is a top rated, private Orthopedic and Sports Medicine practice in New York City. The Orthopedic Surgery, Physical Medicine & Rehabilitation, and Pain Management specialists routinely perform surgical and non-surgical treatments for professional athletes from across the United States and various other countries. Dr. Leon Popovitz and Dr. Michael Mizhiritsky, along with their team of best in class orthopedic physicians, are known for their exemplary orthopedic surgical skill and best rated physical medicine and rehabilitation program. This, along with their top in-office physical therapy and long-term sports rehabilitation processes, leads to athletes of all levels returning to their top physical potential.

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