Chemotherapy can be notoriously difficult, not only physically but mentally and emotionally as well. Mr Jonathan Krell, consultant oncologist and one of London Medical Concierge’s network of doctors, gives advice on how best to stay active when going through chemotherapy.

Being diagnosed with cancer can come as a real blow to patients and their families. However, while rest and recuperation is needed, don’t feel that you necessarily need to give up your former active lifestyle.

Partaking in regular exercise increases muscle strength, joint flexibility, and general conditioning, all of which may be impaired by surgery and some therapies. Exercise is known to improve cardiovascular function and elevates your mood, offering a drug-free relief for feelings of depression when going through chemotherapy.

Exercise also helps to control weight, and gaining weight during and after treatment can increase the risk of the cancer reoccurring.

Too much exercise can make you tired but so can too little. Therefore, finding your own level is important but you shouldn't push too hard. Research shows that exercise can help with the side effects of cancer treatment such as pain, tiredness and sickness and can also improve your mood, reduce anxiety and improve quality of life.

Each patient’s exercise programme should be based on what is safe, effective and enjoyable. You should take into account the type of cancer you have, your cancer treatment, your stamina, strength and fitness level. What may seem like a small amount of exercise for a healthy person may be a lot for someone going through cancer.

Try to do about 30 minutes of physical activity throughout the day, this can include walking, gardening and other general household chores, such as vacuuming, do these regular activities at a higher level of intensity in order for your fitness level to improve.

As your fitness improves you’ll be able to up the level of exercise and activities you do. You could try long walks, cycling, yoga or light gym work. Listen to your body and work at your own pace, and if you experience sickness, dizziness or pain stop exercising immediately.

Studies have shown that exercising can improve your energy levels and help you feel less tired, but listen to your body, don’t put pressure on yourself to exercise and do what you feel comfortable with.

For more information and fast tracked appointments to leading experts please contact us at London Medical Concierge on experts@londonmedicalconcierge.com or call 020 7305 5590

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