Definition: "An ergogenic aid is any substance or phenomenon that enhances performance "

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When combined with other exercise, strength training boosts survival chances of cancer survivors

Strength training enhances the survival chances of people who have been treated for cancer in the past. But they need to walk, jog or do some other type of aerobic exercise regularly as well.

American exercise scientists at the universities of South Carolina and Harvard followed 2863 adult Americans, all of whom had survived cancer, from 1987 to 2003. The data were collected for the Aerobics Center Longitudinal Study, and most of the participants were highly educated.

Physical exercise - mainly walking and jogging - had no effect on the mortality of this group of cancer survivors. Strength training did have an effect. The participants who did strength training once a week or more often were 33 percent less likely to die.

When combined with other exercise, strength training boosts survival chances of cancer survivors

Nevertheless, the findings from this study suggest that walking, running or other forms of aerobic exercise do have a protective effect. Strength training only had a positive effect in the participants who led a relatively active lifestyle. This active lifestyle involved 150 minutes of walking or 75 minutes of jogging per week - or more.

When combined with other exercise, strength training boosts survival chances of cancer survivors


"This study provides initial evidence that resistance exercise at least 1 day per week was associated with reduced risk of all-cause mortality in cancer survivors," the researchers summarised. "The current findings along with previous evidence provides additional clinical significance and rationale for the integration of resistance exercise during cancer survival."

"If these findings are replicated in other studies, medical practitioners and clinicians should be aware of these benefits and discuss the importance of physical activity, particularly resistance exercise, during and after cancer treatment."

"The mechanisms associated with these benefits have yet to be clearly defined and further research on this issue is needed. In addition, it is necessary to determine if a specific type of physical activity may be more beneficial for certain cancers."

"Therefore, future prospective randomized controlled trials should be designed to address potential mechanisms between resistance exercise and health outcomes, including all-cause and disease-specific mortality, during cancer survival."

"Basing these face transformations on prototypes produced from identical twins discordant for smoking instead would mean they illustrate changes in appearance that are truly representative of the effects of smoking, and address the potential criticism that they may reflect inadvertent differences in intrinsic individual differences such as genetic disposition to ageing between smoking and non-smoking groups."

Mayo Clin Proc. 2014 Aug;89(8):1108-1.

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