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Sitting less, more physical activity 'highly likely' to lower breast cancer risk, study says

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FILE - A woman jogs in a Los Angeles park after sunset on April 6, 2022, in Los Angeles, California. (Photo by FREDERIC J. BROWN/AFP via Getty Images) Increasing physical activity and sitting less is "highly likely" to lower the risk of developing breast cancer, new research suggests.

The findings, published this month in the British Journal of Sports Medicine, were consistent across all types and stages of breast cancer — prompting the researchers to recommend a stronger focus on exercise as a preventative measure.

The study was led by the nonprofit Cancer Council Victoria in Australia and included a team of cancer researchers from institutions worldwide, including in Australia, the U.K., the United States, and Canada.

Observational studies have shown that a lack of physical activity and overall sedentary behavior is linked to a higher risk of breast cancer, but such a correlation could also be subject to biases, and proving cause and effect is more difficult.As a result, the research team used a statistical method called Mendelian randomization, which involves a person’s genetic variants.

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