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Brits keep fit to look good, not reduce cancer risk

After keeping fit, the main motivation for 16-24 year olds to exercise in the UK is to look good; 59% of women said they wanted to lose weight and only 39% of people wanted to reduce their risk of cancer. Surprisingly, 16% of women were not motivated by either health or vanity, and worryingly admitted to not taking any exercise at all.

The good news is that some messages about the benefits of activity and maintaining a healthy heart are getting through to people, with 59% of people citing reduction of their risk of heart disease as a reason for taking part in sport or exercising.

The survey results were released today to launch a new partnership between Cancer Research UK and Cannons health and fitness clubs. TV presenter Jayne Middlemiss has lent her support. She said: “People exercise for lots of different reasons but hopefully the partnership between Cancer Research UK and Cannons will highlight that we should all be thinking about reducing our risk of cancer by trying to maintain a healthy body weight. I always try to eat a healthy, balanced diet and exercise regularly.”

Louise Bishop, Cancer Research UK’s Reduce the Risk Campaign manager, said: “It’s believed that half of all cancers could be prevented by changes to lifestyle, in the UK this is around 135,000 cases a year. Our partnership with Cannons is important for raising awareness of what people can do to reduce their risk of cancer and encourage them to make positive changes in their lifestyle.”