Monday, 8 January 2007

Housework is good for women's health

Did you do a double take after you read the title of today's posting? I know I would. It sounds sarcastic or provocative, but it's not - just the plain truth. According to a new research, anyway.

The Cancer Research UK-funded study involving 200,000 women from nine European countries found that doing housework can reduce the risk of breast cancer. Seriously. The research looked at both pre- and post-menopausal women doing a range of physical activities such as work, leisure and housework. When taken together, all forms of activities reduced tbe breast cancer risk in post-menopausal women, but had no visible effect on pre-menopausal women.

Only housework, of all the activities, significantly reduced the risk of breast cancer in both pre- and post-menopausal women. In fact, doing household chores cut the risk by 30% among the first group and 20% among the latter.

The women in the research were studied over an average of 6.4 years. They spent an average of 16 to 17 hours a week doing housework. The results of the research suggested that moderate forms of physical activity like housework may be more important than more intense but less frequent activity in reducing breast cancer risk.

It has long been known that exercise can reduce the risk of breast cancer. Women who maintain a healthy weight are also less likely to develop breast cancer, according to Dr Lesley Walker of Cancer Research UK.

So if you're a woman and you don't enjoy doing housework (I still don't), you might begin to see it as a health-enhancing activity. I imagine some men will use this as another reason not to do any household chores. Well, I'm off now - to do some housework, of course.

No comments: