How Even The Simplest Fitness Routine Can Benefit Breast Cancer Patients

According to Mayo Clinic, breast cancer is the second most common form of cancer — behind skin cancer — and while it can affect both men and women, more women are diagnosed each year. There are many different types of breast cancer, and while the diagnosis is scary and disheartening, advances in medicine and early detection efforts have made a huge difference in the death rate related to breast cancer and for many, it is no longer considered a death sentence.

But even with the advances, breast cancer can still be extremely difficult. Treatments often include radiation and surgery, per The American Cancer Society, and the side effects of those treatments are vast. During treatment, breast cancer patients may experience everything from hot flashes and fatigue to nausea, numbness, and sore mouths (via Breast Cancer Now). And while many of these symptoms are temporary and subside after treatment ends, they can be difficult to deal with at the moment. 

As Susan G. Komen notes, doctors often recommend things like acupuncture, meditation, and hot and cold therapy to alleviate breast cancer symptoms, but there may be something even simpler to do to help.

A super simple workout routine can help lessen side effects following treatment

According to The American Cancer Society, breast cancer treatment is determined by what stage of cancer you have as well as other health factors like your age, weight, and whether or not you have hit menopause. The majority of patients will undergo surgery to try and remove the tumor in the breast and many will also have chemotherapy or radiation to get rid of cancer cells. These treatments, including others like hormone therapy and targeted drug therapy, come with a host of side effects (via The American Cancer Society). You are likely already doubling up on vitamin D and taking medication to help alleviate pain, but a new study shows there may be something super simple you can do that can make a huge difference.

Per U.S. News & World Report, an Australia-based study was recently released proving that light exercise helped breast cancer patients with fatigue and offered a higher quality of life. The study followed 89 women diagnosed with breast cancer, half of which participated in an exercise routine. And while the routine called for "30 minutes of moderate intensity aerobic exercise five days a week or 20 minutes of vigorous aerobic exercise three days a week," researchers also believe that even light exercise done at home can make a huge difference in alleviating symptoms post-treatment. So while it may be hard to get up and work out, the effects of doing so may be just what you need to get through treatment and diagnosis.