Updated 05 April 2017

Get active to fight cancer

One of the key messages this World Cancer Day (4 February 2017) is to get active and monitor your weight to reduce your risk of being diagnosed with cancer.


The World Health Organisation explains obesity as “having abnormal or excessive fat that presents a risk to your health”. According to CANSA, there is an alarming increase in the number of overweight and obese people in South Africa -- more than 29% are men, and 56% are women. 

Obesity, which is classified as a chronic disease, is linked to an increased risk for cancer. Researchers believe if you are overweight, you are putting yourself at risk of developing several types of cancers – including cancer of the breast, endometrium, oesophagus, pancreas and kidney. In addition, you are at risk of other non-communicable diseases like cardiovascular disease, diabetes, stroke and hypertension.

CANSA recognises that sport can unify and transform lives and societies. Being active and choosing a healthy lifestyle are key messages promoted this World Cancer Day.  

Read: Exercise can reduce your cancer risk by up to 40%

Fortunately, you can reduce your risk by maintaining a healthy lifestyle and optimum weight. Here’s how!

4 steps to setting fitness goals
Before you embark on a fitness or training programme, set yourself clear and realistic long- and short-term goals.

resolutions, health, fitness, exercise, training

Top tips on how to keep active in the office

We all sit too much. So much that it’s beginning to affect our health. Try these tips to get moving every day to counteract the risks of too much sitting.

exercise, office, stretching

Working out in the concrete jungle
There may not be any beaches for running or mountains to climb, but Johannesburg still offers a great variety of exercise options to keep you fit.

exercise, outdoors, fitness, health

4 ways to fit exercise into your life
The secret to fitting in exercise -- and sticking with it -- is to make it work for you.

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An hour's walk can counteract a sedentary day

Scientists found that it takes about an hour's moderate exercise to undo the damage of sitting in the office all day.

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Read more: 
Daily exercise may boost colon cancer survival

Exercise may cut risk of 13 cancers

Why breast cancer survivors should exercise


Ask the Expert

Cancer expert

CANSA’s purpose is to lead the fight against cancer in South Africa. Its mission is to be the preferred non-profit organisation that enables research, educates the public and provides support to all people affected by cancer. Questions are answered by CANSA’s Head of Health Professor Michael Herbst. For more information, visit

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