Last weekend a friend mentioned he’d recently heard a fascinating after-dinner speech at a golf club dinner. The speaker was Declan Cahill, a leading prostate cancer surgeon at the Royal Marsden. (Coincidentally, the Royal Marsden is where Stuart was treated.) My friend said he’d never seen a room so focused on what the speaker was telling them.
I decided to try to contact Mr Cahill to find out what he had said, and mentioned why our walk is called The 1,000 Years Hike. He was incredibly helpful, and as the Brothers are all at that age when we are most “at risk”, his message was particularly significant. In a nutshell, this was what he told me:
There was attention last week on a study emphasising the incidence risk of obesity and getting prostate cancer. The statistics came from a large database. We’re not yet sure how relevant they are, but the message is simple.
Obesity makes many prostate cancer patients simply inoperable and impacts diabetes and cardiovascular disease. Most likely these will kill them before prostate cancer, or it will so complicate the treatment that it makes it miserable.
Similarly, don’t have knee or hip surgery without losing weight first. It may obviate the need for surgery, or surgery can have even more of a positive impact.
Do everything you can not to retire overweight. Life will simply be so much more active, long, healthy and fun.
Enjoy the Hike!Declan Cahill.
That simple statement, “Do everything you can not to retire overweight. Life will simply be so much more active, long, healthy and fun”, struck a chord.
How many of us actually take that kind of pragmatic advice to heart, and do something about it? We report elsewhere on the Brothers’ preparations for the Hike these past eight months. A major benefit for many is weight loss. Some of us have certainly retired overweight, but I know we’re now making up for lost time. Others can too.
Further information on the study is reported in The Telegraph.