Study: Exercise Prevents Breast Cancer - KTVN Channel 2 - Reno Tahoe Sparks News, Weather, Video

Study: Exercise Prevents Breast Cancer

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Friends Mary Porter and Merleann Taylor go walking in Central Park every day. It could help lower their risk of breast cancer.

"It's such a healing stress reducing thing to do it really helps me start my day," says Mary.

A new study from the American Cancer Society finds postmenopausal women whose only exercise is walking an hour a day still reduce their chances of getting breast cancer 14%.

"They are walking at a really moderate pace about 3 miles an hour," says Dr. Alpa Patel.

Women who engage in more vigorous exercise lower their risk even more - 25%.

"We know that physical activity is associated with sex hormones we know to be important in breast cancer."

Current guidelines recommend adults do at least two and a half hours of moderate exercise, or 75 minutes of vigorous activity per week. But studies show less than half of U.S. women do even that much.

68-year-old Merleann - whose mother and sister both had breast cancer -- says keeping fit is a big part of her life.

"I can't do what I used to be able to do but I still can do almost everything," says Taylor.

Researchers say it doesn't have to be a marathon. A leisurely walk every day can still make a big difference.

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