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25.12.2015


Physical activity lowers oestrogen levels

The more you move, the less oestrogen circulates through your body. Biostatisticians at the University of Maryland published the results of a study they did in Medicine & Science in Sports & Exercise in which they discovered a relationship between oestrogen and activity after studying 452 women aged 40-72.

Study
The researchers fitted the participants with an accelerometer which they wore for seven days. This enabled the researchers to estimate how many minutes a day the women were moving or sitting still. The women were post-menopausal and not taking synthetic hormones.

At the end of the seven days the researchers measured the amount of estradiol and estradiol metabolites in the women's urine. The urine concentrations correlate with the blood concentrations.

Results
The more movement the women had had (the higher the number of counts per minute registered by the accelerometers), the less estradiol and estrone the researchers found. So physical activity lowers the concentration of oestrogens in the body.


Physical activity lowers oestrogen levels


Physical activity lowers oestrogen levels



Being sedentary has the opposite effect. The more minutes the women spent sitting each day, the more estradiol and oestrone there was in their urine, as you can see in the figure above.

How exercise reduces the amount of estradiol and oestrone is shown in the table below. Physical activity increased the ratio between the amount of metabolised and therefore less active analogues of estradiol and oestrone and the amount of non-metabolised estradiol and oestrone in the urine.


Physical activity lowers oestrogen levels



Physical movement apparently activates the enzymes that metabolise and neutralise estradiol and oestrone. The figure below sketches the main processes involved in the metabolism of estradiol and oestrone.


Physical activity lowers oestrogen levels



Conclusion
The researchers think that their findings are mainly of interest for women who want to reduce their likelihood of developing breast cancer, but these new insights are probably also relevant for men who want to reduce the levels of oestrogens in their body.

Source:
Med Sci Sports Exerc. 2016 Mar;48(3):439-48.

More:
Gentle exercise and healthy diet increase breast cancer survival chance 01.07.2010

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