This one is really hard to grasp — as I said in the headline, it is counterintuitive. After all, regular exercise, we keep being told, promotes health in various ways, such as reducing the risks of developing diabetes and growing obese. And yet, a study has found that dedicated cyclists — those cycling nine hours a week — are incomparably more likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer than the average person.
The study in question was conducted by a team of scientists at University College London, included 5,200 cyclists and, we are told, it was the biggest research project ever conducted on the impact of cycling on health.
The scientists found that cyclists in in their 50s who bicycle for more than nine hours a week, on average, are up to five times as likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer. In the process, they disproved an age-old health myth linking cycling and infertility or erectile problems.
Previous studies had already linked cycling with testicular cancer, of which disgraced former cyclist Lance Armstrong was famously treated. But that is the first study to find a connection between the sport and prostate cancer.
The scientists said that the statistical link, which was tested in the 2,000 participants who were older 50, did not prove that cycling causes prostate cancer. However, they could not rule out the probability that cancer cases were caused by the increased pressure on the prostate. Dr. Mark Hamer, of the Department of Epidemiology at UCL, who was part of the team conducting the study, said:
These results are not straightforward. It may well be these men are more health aware and therefore more likely to get a diagnosis. Those who are cycling the most did not make up a huge sample so more research is needed.
We are talking about very keen cyclists who are on their bikes for nine hours a week — not people who are just commuting to work.
The paper, which was published in the Journal of Men’s Health, said:
The findings of this study demonstrated a direct relationship between risk of prostate cancer and cycling volume in cyclists aged over 50 years.
This association was statistically significant after controlling for key confounding variables, including age.
Very interesting… (Scroll down for the video.)
1. A new study has found middle aged men who cycle for more than nine hours a week to be up to five times more likely to be diagnosed with prostate cancer.
2. Researchers said they could not rule out that the cancer cases were caused by an increased pressure on the prostate.
3. The paper said: “The findings of this study demonstrated a direct relationship between risk of prostate cancer and cycling volume in cyclists aged over 50 years”.
4. The researchers added: “This association was statistically significant after controlling for key confounding variables, including age”.
5. Pictured are prostate cancer cells under the microscope.
And here is the video:
Source: Health Medicine Network.
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