Cancer is tough and so is the treatment. There will be times when you are so devoid of energy you may find it difficult to lift your head off the pillow but equally, there will be times when you have more energy and want to get out and get active.
As the American Physical Therapy Association explains, there are many reasons why exercising while going through cancer treatment is good for you. These include:
Although it sounds counterproductive, exercise can actually help you feel less fatigued and give you more energy, helping you to get through that next round of treatment.
Increases Muscle Strength
Exercising regularly will help to maintain and increase muscle strength, which will help you look and feel stronger.
Exercise has been proven to help alleviate stress, ease depression and anxiety, and release happy, feel-good hormones.
Swelling and water retention (lymphedema) can be a major concern when going through cancer treatment. Regular exercise can help prevent or reduce swelling.
So long as you don’t overdo it and injure yourself, exercising at a comfortable pace can help relieve pain.
Helps Maintain a Healthy Body Weight
Some cancer treatments may make patients put on weight. Exercise can help to maintain a patient’s natural healthy weight.
Reduces Brain Fog
Chemotherapy and radiation therapy can result in brain fog for many people going through cancer treatment. Exercise has been shown to lift the fog and improve cognitive skills.
Minimizes Bone Density Loss
Certain cancer treatments can result in the loss of bone density. Exercise can help to minimize bone density loss.
If you love exercising, continuing to do so while going through cancer treatment will allow you to get out and do what you love and forget about your cancer for a while. It also means that when you’re in remission and return full-time to your chosen exercise program, you won’t have lost too much of your past progress.
Studies have found that cancer patients who exercise are more likely to have a better outcome from their cancer treatment than those who don’t exercise.
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