Cancer is often referred to as the Big C. The frequent use of this pronounced word to refer to malignant disease can be linked to the fact that all over the world, regardless of age, sex, race, nationality or financial status, cancer strikes fear. In Hriday Dr. Sajjan Rajpurohit, Senior Director – Medical Oncology, BLK-Max Cancer Center reminds readers that the disease most feared is unfortunately a reality for millions of people around the world. “However, in the journey to fight cancer, what lies beyond treatment is equally significant – the journey of surviving cancer,” shares the doctor. In this article, Dr. Rajpurohit tries to shed light on the dos and don’ts to ensure the best possible quality of life while living with cancer, as well as insight into appropriate exercises and considerations for different types of cancer.
Living with Cancer: Dos and Don’ts
Dr. Sajjan Rajpurohit shares the following do’s and don’ts for those who have cancer and want to live the best life possible:
1. Make self-care a priority: One of the most important aspects of living with cancer is making self-care a priority. These include maintaining a nutritious diet, staying hydrated, getting adequate rest and managing stress levels effectively. Self-care lays the foundation for coping with the challenges that cancer can bring.
2. Don’t neglect mental well-being: Cancer not only affects the body but also the mental and emotional health. It is essential to seek support from loved ones, join a support group or consider therapy if needed. Keeping a positive outlook can significantly affect one’s overall well-being.
3. Stay Active: While it’s essential to listen to your body and not overexert yourself, being physically active can have many benefits for people with cancer. Gentle exercise such as walking, swimming or yoga can help improve mood, energy levels and overall quality of life.
4. Do not ignore the symptoms: Regular monitoring of symptoms and prompt medical attention for any changes or concerns is essential. Early detection of potential problems can lead to better outcomes and more effective management of the disease.
5. Contact your healthcare team: It is important to establish open communication with your healthcare team. Be proactive in discussing any questions, concerns or treatment options. Your medical team is there to support you every step of the way.
Exercise recommendations for people with cancer
Different types of cancer can present different challenges and considerations when it comes to exercise, says Dr. Rajpurohit. However, he shares some general recommendations below:
1. Aerobic Exercise: Activities such as walking, cycling or swimming can improve cardiovascular health, boost mood and increase energy levels.
2. Strength Training: Incorporating strength training exercises using light weights or resistance bands can help maintain muscle mass and bone density, especially important for people undergoing certain cancer treatments.
3. Flexibility and balance exercises: Yoga, tai chi, or simple stretching routines can increase flexibility, improve balance, and reduce the risk of falls, especially relevant for those dealing with treatments that affect mobility or coordination.
Life with Cancer: Considerations and Prevention
Although exercise can be extremely beneficial, it is essential to consider individual limitations and potential barriers. “Factors such as fatigue, pain, or side effects of treatment can affect the ability to exercise. It is very important to listen to your body, start slowly, and modify activities as needed. It is recommended to consult with your healthcare team before beginning any exercise regimen, because They can provide personalized recommendations based on your specific situation,” says Dr Rajpurohit.
The doctor admits that living with cancer presents its own challenges, but it’s also a journey filled with hope, resilience and the potential for meaningful moments. “By prioritizing self-care, being proactive and maintaining open communication with your healthcare team, individuals can improve their quality of life and navigate their cancer journey with strength and dignity,” shares Dr. Rajpurohit.