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Breast Cancer

Understanding Breast Cancer in Black Women: Part 3 - What You Can Do

Our previous discussions explained that Black women with breast cancer often have lower survival due to:

Why is this important to know?

Many black women face lower incomes that may prevent healthy diets, regular exercise and healthcare access. It is difficult for most people to make great increases in income. Most people do have the power to be more physically active.  

It is important to know that exercise does not have to be difficult or expensive. It does not require a gym or exercise gear. There are very simple things women can do to meet the American Cancer Society’s exercise guidelines. This information is even more important for women with breast cancer. Exercise makes the body stronger and can also help it fight cancer.

How much exercise you need and how to get it

1.      30 minutes of moderate activity five days a week.

a.       Brisk walking (such as in a park, shopping center, down a hallway, on a sidewalk)

b.      “Brisk” walking means walking fast enough to speed up your heartbeat and breathing, while still being able to hold a conversation

2.      70 minutes of strenuous activity once a week

a.       Examples: Weight lifting, going up stairs, doing squats with a regular chair

b.      “Strenuous activity” requires more effort and energy

The lower survival of black women with breast cancer is alarming and heartbreaking. It can also be changed! The best way to change any problem is with action. Let’s get active!

See A Look at Income and A Look at Obesity and Exercise to learn more. 

For more information:

Go to the Breast Cancer health topic, where you can:

This article is a NetWellness exclusive.

Last Reviewed: May 10, 2016

Cynthia  Owusu, MD Cynthia Owusu, MD