New Study Suggests Exercise Can Supplement ADT

Exercise may alleviate the side effects of hormone reduction therapy for prostrate disease
March 26, 2020 Updated: March 26, 2020

If you’re undergoing hormone reduction therapy to treat your prostate, a new study finds exercise can aid recovery and limit side effects.

Androgen suppression therapy, or androgen deprivation therapy (ADT), is a common treatment used to limit androgen production and stymie the spread of compromised prostate cells.

But the treatment comes with a number of side effects, such as increased body fat and reduced efficiency of the cardiovascular and pulmonary systems. These side effects can boost the risk of heart attack or stroke while also reducing the quality of life.

According to a new study, one way to limit these risks is through exercise.

An international study examined if a supervised exercise program could help reduce ADT side effects in 50 men. The exercise group completed three months of supervised aerobic and resistance training for 60 minutes twice a week.

Afterward, they continued with self-directed exercise for three weeks.

The study started before participants began ADT, and it was noted that the side effects associated with the treatment went down. Participants showed several benefits, including improvements in fatigue and lower risk of heart and lung disease.

Researchers noted that the first three months following ADT is when side effects develop, and exercise may help combat them. Starting just before is recommended, and continuing an exercise program afterward is recommended.

Consistency and adherence are essential if you’re interested in experiencing the benefits of exercise. Any gains made can quickly disappear when activity stops, so including it into your weekly routine is a must. Aiming to get about 30 to 60 minutes per day is ideal.

Whether or not you’ve got a healthy prostate or are undergoing hormonal treatment, getting exercise can help improve your health and reduce the risk of a multitude of conditions.

Strength training can be performed at home using body weight, elastics, or dumbbells—anything that can provide resistance. Try to do that twice per week. Aerobic training can be performed outdoors, or inside if you have a treadmill or staircase.

Because of COVID-19, walk on the streets without a lot of people and remember to practice social distancing. Leave at least one meter between you and others when passing to maintain adequate distance. Be warned that over-exercise can also strain the immune system, so don’t overdo it.

Devon Andre holds a bachelor’s degree in forensic science from the University of Windsor in Canada and a Juris Doctor degree from the University of Pittsburgh. Andre is a journalist for BelMarraHealthwhich first published this article.