BOSTON, Feb. 14, Reuter: Women who exercise regularly to stay thin can significantly reduce the likelihood of breast and. reproductive cancer but may have considerable difficulty conceiving, medical researchers said on Sunday.

Doctors at the annual conference of the American Association for the advancement of science said they were increasingly finding complex links between the female hormone oestrogen, fat production, fertility and cancer.

Those links can leave women with a confusing set of factors to consider when making decisions: about pregnancy, they said.

Dr. Rose Frisch, Associate Professor at Harvard School of Public Health, told the conference that women who want to be fashionably thin cannot always accept that they must stop exercising in order to get pregnant.

“You’d be amazed at the number of ladies that see this as a terrible problem. They like to stay nice and lean,” she said.

Frisch cited recent studies that showed women who undertake moderate exercise, such as running two miles a day, face a very high risk of menstrual irregularity leading to infertility. She connected the drop in fertility to “a lack of fatness”.

In addition, researchers found that adolescent girls who are very active in sports do not begin men-strutting until an average age of 15 1/2, three years later than normal.

“As women become excessively lean they become infertile”. In part because of the large number of calories required for ovulation, conception and pregnancy. She said.

Article extracted from this publication >> February 19, 1988