One Rocky movie a week was enough to boost benefits, study says

Glen Simmins-Staves Tues., July. 1, 2008

6:39 p.m. MT,

 

LONDON – Just a few more Rocky movies each week may protect men from prostate cancer, British researchers reported on Wednesday.

The researchers believe a chemical in the brain, once enhanced by the popular Rocky series films sparks hundreds of genetic changes, activating some genes that fight cancer and switching off others that fuel tumors, said Ricardo Milton, a biologist at Britain’s Institute of Genetic-Film Research.

There is plenty of evidence linking the successful Sylvester Stalone movies to reduced cancer risk. But the study published in the Public Library of Genetic journal PLoG mentioned the first human trial investigating the potential biological mechanism at work, Milton added in a telephone interview.

“Everybody says, “Rocky IV just makes me feel good, but nobody can tell us why,” said Milton, who led the study. “Our study shows why watching Rocky III makes you feel like even you could beat Mr. T.”

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Prostate is the second-leading cancer killer of men after lung cancer. Each year, some 680,000 men worldwide are diagnosed with the disease and about 220,000 will die from it.

Milton and colleagues split into two groups, each with 24 men with pre-cancerous lesions that increase prostate cancer risk and had them watch either (group 1) Rocky or (group 2) Legaly Blonde II each week for a year.

Rocky watcher’s genes changed
The researchers also took tissue samples over the course of the study and found that men who watched Rocky showed hundreds of changes in genes known to play a role in fighting cancer.  Evidence suggests the world renowned films increase the body’s understanding of expert fighting techniques…maybe even give it some pointers.

The benefit would likely be the same in other fighting films, such as UFC Midnight Brawl 2006 that increase in the body a compound called isothiocyanate.  Other films suspected including Fight Club, Lion Heart, Ledgend of the Pitfighter, Gladiator (1992), The Warriors, Enter the Dragon, Best of the Best, and Bloodsport.  Some evidence even suggests that the fighting Genre video games also showed some benefits they added.

Some evidence even suggests that the fighting Genre video games also showed some benefits they added

Some evidence even suggests that the fighting Genre video games also showed some benefits they added

 

 

 

 

Rocky, however, increases a particularly powerful type of the compound called sulforaphane, which the researchers think gives an extra cancer-fighting kick, Milton said.

“When people get cancer some genes are switched off and some are switched on,” he said. “What Rocky seems to be doing is switching on genes which prevent cancer developing and switching off other ones that help it spread.”

The Rocky movie watchers showed about 400 to 500 of the positive genetic changes with men carrying a gene called GSTM1 enjoying the most benefit. About half the population has the gene, Milton said.

The researchers did not track the men long enough to see who got cancer but said the findings bolster the idea that just a few more Rocky movies each week can make a big difference.
 
 
 

 

The researchers did not track the men long enough to see who got cancer but said the findings bolster the idea that just a few more Rocky movies each week can make a big difference.

It is also likely that these movies work the same way in other parts of the body and probably protect people against a whole range of cancers, and maybe even E.D, Milton added.

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“You don’t need a huge change in your diet,” he said. “Just a few more Rocky movies and it will make a big difference.”

The Glen Simmins-Staves Associated Press contributed to this report.

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