Sunday, 18 January 2015

3. Obesity, Overweight and Cancer

      Being overweight or obese may increase your risk of contracting one of the 10 
of the most common cancers. While it is well known that overweight can increase 
the risk of diabetes, heart disease, high blood pressure and stroke, recent research 
by Dr. Krishnan Bhaskaran, of the London School of Hygiene & Tropical Medicine 
in the UK and published in the medical journal The Lancet, also suggests that 
overweight and obesity substantially increases the risk of Cancer. 
The risk is particularly strong in the case of the following common cancers: 
Womb (62% increased risk); Gallbladder (31% increased risk); Kidney 
(25% increased risk); Cervical (10% increased risk); Thyroid (9% increased risk); 
Leukaemia (9% increased risk). 
        The researchers also found that overweight and obesity was associated with a 
19% higher risk of liver cancer, a 10% higher risk of colon cancer, a 9% higher 
risk of ovarian cancer and a 5% increased risk of breast cancer, together with 
some risk of prostate cancer.
       Dr Bhaskaran's research team noted that all increased risks varied both with 
different cancers and with an individual’s overweight, sex and menopausal status; 
the overweight affecting cancer risk through a number of different processes, 
depending on the cancer type.

Oprah Winfrey lost pounds through diet and exercise
     From their findings, the team calculated that overweight or obesity possibly                                    accounts for 41% of womb cancers in the UK and more than 10% of all gallbladder,                                  kidney, liver and colon cancers. They also calculate that on current UK weight                                      increase trends, an added 8 – 10 pounds in adult weight across the UK population                                         could eventually cause an additional 3790 cases of the 10 most common cancers 
every year; a daunting statistic that provides food for thought about our individual 
dietary regime.                                                                                                                                                                                                    
     Other studies, relating to Diet and Cancer, highlight  processed red meat, salt,                                        sugar and artificial sweeteners as potential cancer risks.  Your overall diet can affect 
your Cancer risk.   About one-third of all Cancers can be prevented by eating well, 
being active and  maintaining a healthy body weight.                                                                                                                       
     Eating well is all about balance. Specific types of food can reduce or increase the                                        risk of cancer. For example, eating plenty of fibre, fruit and vegetables can help  
maintain healthy body weight, which reduces the risk of Cancer. But studies show  
that eating processed meat increases the risk of Colorectal Cancer.  
     The foods we choose to eat can help us reach and maintain a healthy weight,                                           which reduces cancer risk. 

Further reading:  

The Lancet  Full Research findings. 
Lancet Comment : Obesity: a certain and avoidable cause of cancer
Canadian Cancer Society : Sugar and Cancer 

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