Sunday May 27, 2018

Anti-stress hormone linked to breast cancer risk

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London: Women with low levels of an anti-stress hormone have an increased risk of getting breast cancer, says a new study.

The study focused on a hormone which circulates freely in the blood, enkephalin, with pain- and anxiety-reducing properties. Enkephalin also reinforces the immune system by directly affecting immune cells. Credits: https://www.google.co.in/url?sa=i&rct=j&q=&esrc=s&source=images&cd=&cad=rja&uact=8&ved=0CAYQjB1qFQoTCPiMsv7f3MYCFcUrpgodVqIA4Q&url=http%3A%2F%2Fwww.choctawnation.com%2Fnews-room%2Fpress-room%2Fmedia-releases%2Fchoctaw-bike-team-encourages-breast-cancer-awareness%2F&ei=CB6mVfjoO8XXmAXWxIKIDg&bvm=bv.97653015,d.eXY&psig=AFQjCNEi8zFFmDRriJ0iC8kBpejk9sc6Iw&ust=1437035987055497

“Among women with the lowest levels of the hormone, the risk of breast cancer was more than three times that of the women with the highest levels of the hormone. This is one of the strongest correlations between cancer risk and a freely circulating biomarker ever described,” said Olle Melander, professor at Lund University, Sweden.

The study that appeared in the Journal of Clinical Oncology, was based on blood samples taken from over 1,900 women. The average age of the women studied was 57. The women were followed up with regard to breast cancer for an average period of 15 years.

The researchers said geographical location and age, in spite of the adjustments in the study, may be significant. After further studies, the results will facilitate prevention and early detection of breast cancer.

For those with an increased risk of breast cancer, potential preventive treatments could take the form of lifestyle interventions to reduce stress and new drugs.

“Our immediate plan is to investigate how to affect the level of enkephalin in healthy individuals. We will do this primarily in a study with a smaller number of women. We are also interested in the hormone’s role in other cancers,” said co-author Mattias Belting and professor at Lund University, Sweden.

( IANS)

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Yoga a Boon for Breast Cancer Survivors

The more the women in the study practised yoga, the better their results

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Yoga a Boon for Breast Cancer Survivors
Yoga a Boon for Breast Cancer Survivors. Pixabay

Breast cancer survivors, if they practise yoga for as little as three months, may significantly reduce fatigue and inflammation, shows research.

“Modest yoga practise over a period of several months could have substantial benefits for breast cancer survivors,” claimed Janice Kiecolt-Glaser, professor of psychiatry and psychology at Ohio State University in the US.

“The results could easily generalise to other groups of people who have issues with fatigue and inflammation,” added Kiecolt-Glaser.

To reach this conclusion, researchers asked 200 participants to practise yoga in small groups twice a week for 12 weeks.

Women in the control group were instructed to perform normal routines and not to do yoga.

Results showed that on average, fatigue was 57 percent lower in women who had practiced yoga compared to the non-yoga group, and their inflammation was reduced by up to 20 percent.

Representational image.
Representational image. Pixabay

“The participants had completed all breast cancer treatments before the start of the study,” said the study published in the Journal of Clinical Oncology.

The more the women in the study practised yoga, the better their results.

“Though many studies have suggested that yoga has numerous benefits, this is the largest known randomised controlled trial that includes biological measures,” Kiecolt-Glaser said.

Chronic inflammation is linked to numerous health problems, including coronary heart disease, type 2 diabetes, arthritis and alzheimer’s disease.

A secondary analysis showed that more frequent yoga practise produced larger changes in fatigue, vitality and depressive symptoms as well as between an average 4 to 6 percent reduction in two of the three pro-inflammatory cytokines.

Also Read: Avoid Diabetes With Yoga, Weight Lifting

The yoga group also reported significantly improved sleep compared to the control group.

“Yoga has many parts to it – meditation, breathing, stretching and strengthening. We think the breathing and meditation components were really important in terms of some of the changes we were seeing,” Kiecolt-Glaser stressed.

Reducing fatigue enables women to engage in other activities over time. So yoga may have offered a variety of benefits in addition to the yoga exercises themselves, added the study. (IANS)

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