There are multiple reasons WHY it is important to continue to start a resistance training program when living with cancer. This is especially important in those who are receiving androgren-deprivation therapy or anti-VEGF treatment. These are common treatments for the prostate and renal cancer population.
WHY is it even more vital … you may ask?!
Well.. the way in which these treatments work within the body can cause sarcopenia. Sarcopenia is defined as a loss in skeletal or lean body mass. Your lean body mass includes everything in your body except your body fat (AKA adipose tissue).
This loss in lean body mass can…
Increase cancer-related fatigue
Decrease quality of life
Increase risk for diabetes
This is because your muscles are SUPER metabolic in nature and have the ability to improve your metabolism.
Increase cardiac side effects
Your heart is a MUSCLE! Exercise is proven time and time again to help strengthen your heart whereas these treatments are linked to having a negative impact on the heart’s functionality.
Exercise can mitigate these side effects while one is receiving treatment and thereafter.
NOT TO MENTION -studies have shown that those who have a higher lean body mass experience dose-limiting toxicities LESS often and at a LESSER severity.
Because each patient and treatment are different, it is important to consult with an exercise physiologist or cancer exercise specialist in order to develop the most individualized program that will give you the most beneficial results.
This beautifully written article dives deeper into skeletal muscle, exercise and its association with genitourinary cancer treatment. I highly recommend the read!