Weight Gain Increases Risk of Cancer in Adults
Obesity is associated with at least 13 types of cancer. Obesity is a strong environmental factor that causes obesity similar to smoking. Why is obesity linked to cancer? Obese people have a plethora of fat cells. Fat cells are active. They produce chemicals that attract immune cells to body tissues causing chronic inflammation. Inflammation can increase the risk of cancer.
As if weight gain has not been implicated in enough chronic illnesses already, a new study has shown that gaining weight could result in a 50% increase in cancer risk among men and a 20% increase in cancer risk among women.
Granted, these statistics are shocking, but they do offer some hope. Weight is the most preventable cause of cancer after smoking; and if so many cancer cases can be linked to this chronic health problem, then there is a lot more governments and individuals can do to lower the alarmingly high incidences of cancer in the world today.
However, these figures were linked to cancers that have previously been associated with obesity or excessive weight. The research was trying to understand the impact of long-term obesity on the possibility of experiencing obesity-related cancers.
The study was quite extensive, and it involved 300,000 people, whose BMI and cancer statistics were tracked over several decades. The changes in BMI were recorded between ages 18 and 65. 177,500 of the participants in the study were men, while the rest were women (111,500).
The study was conducted on people from America by researchers at The University of Manchester and The Health eResearch Centre. The results were presented at the National Cancer Research Institute’s (NCRI) Cancer Conference in Liverpool.
Cancer is 50% More Likely in Overweight Men
For the men, an increase in BMI from about 22 to 27 resulted in a 50% increase in the risk of obesity-related cancer. And when the men went past being overweight into being obese, the risk increased by 53%. This is an indication that once a man has become overweight, he has already significantly increased his chances of suffering from obesity-related cancer. So, it’s not just obese men who need to be worried about the increased cancer risks unhealthy weight causes.
Being overweight and obese has been strongly linked to certain forms of cancer. They include bowel, pancreatic, and breast cancer. However, some are gender-specific, but still more common among overweight and obese people than normal-weight people. For instance, ovarian cancer in women.
Cancer is 17% More Likely in Obese Women
For the women, an increase in BMI from 23 to 32 resulted in a 17% increase in risk of cancer. After the age of 65, about 9,400 women were diagnosed with obesity-related cancers. Among the men in the study, 5,500 were diagnosed with obesity-related cancers after this age.
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So, to seriously lower your risk of suffering from some form of cancer or another later in life, it is important that you try to maintain a healthy weight. Letting yourself remain overweight for years on end could put you at serious risk of suffering from this dangerous disease.