Obesity is Linked to Higher Risk of Cancer

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Obesity is Linked to Higher Risk of Cancer

woman with healthy foodCancer Research UK has released alarming new figures that demonstrate a very strong correlation between obesity and various types of cancer. In women, obesity increases the risk of developing cancer by 40 percent. So far, seven different types of cancer have been associated with the obesity link:

  1. breast cancer
  2. pancreatic cancer
  3. cancer of the gallbladder
  4. kidney cancer
  5. Cancer of the bowels
  6. Uterine cancer
  7. Esophageal cancer

The study compared two groups of women – those of average weight and whose considered obese – and found that 274 out of 1,000 obese women will develop cancer. This number was in sharp contrast to the 194 out of 1,000 average-weight women who develop cancer.

So does that mean that obesity causes cancer? Not directly. What we’re looking at is a combination of factors, from genetics and environment to lifestyle choices and weight, that all come together to create negative health outcomes. Obesity is thought to play a role in the development of the disease, because excess body weight tends to throw hormones out of balance. In animal studies, hormone changes have been linked to cancer.

Obviously, there is nothing you can do about your genetic potential for developing cancer. But you do have control over lifestyle factors which increase your odds of developing the disease. Doctors recommend four things that you can start doing right now in order to cut your risk of cancer:

  1. Quit smoking
  1. Cut back on alcohol
  1. Eat a healthy diet
  1. Lose weight

A healthy diet, low in saturated fat and high in protein, can help you to lose weight. Certain foods, such as tomatoes and broccoli, are also known to contain powerful nutrients that prevent cancer. You may also need to add exercise to your daily routine. For personalized guidance creating your diet and exercise plan, as consult with a weight loss physician. And as always, don’t forget to schedule regular screenings for cancer – particularly mammograms. Early detection is key to recovery and a healthy future!