Charities have said that a diagnosis could provide a teachable moment for patients to change their diet, and quit unhealthy habits, such as smoking or excess drinking.
The study by the German Cancer Research Centre in Heidelberg investigated tracked women aged between 50 and 74 for 12 years, which scientists said is the longest follow-up of any such research.
The study was restricted to women who had already survived approximately six years from point of diagnosis.
Researcher Audrey Jung said: “The results of our study suggest that there are merits to leisure-time physical activity in breast cancer patients, and that its associated benefits are not only limited to women who are physically active before and after diagnosis. Instead, the benefits appear to extend to women who did not adhere to the recommended levels of physical activity before diagnosis but who did so after diagnosis.”
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