(Health Secrets) Over 100,000 cancers that occur in the US each year can be attributed to excess body fat, according to a report released by the American Institute for Cancer Research. Using the figures published in the recent Policy and Action for Cancer Prevention report, this study looks at the percentage of common cancers that are a direct result of obesity. It also looks at how being overweight can make cancer harder to treat and can reduce cancer survival levels.
Which cancers are caused by obesity?
Research into the types of cancer that are linked to obesity is ongoing, and there are likely to be new figures and findings released soon. However, the latest report from the American Institute for Cancer Research details seven types of cancer that are caused by obesity, and the number of cases directly linked to excess body fat each year in the US.
1.33,000 cases of breast cancer each year
2.20,700 cases of endometrial cancer each year
3.13,900 cases of kidney cancers each year
4.13,200 cases of colorectal cancers each year
5.11,900 cases of pancreatic cancer each year
6.5,800 cases of esophageal cancer each year
7.2,000 cases of gallbladder cancer each year
Obesity is defined as being roughly thirty pounds or more over a healthy weight for your age and height. Overall about a third of American adults are considered obese. As well as increasing their risk of these and other cancers, obesity increases a person’s risk of developing diabetes and heart disease.
How does excess body fat cause cancer?
There are various links between obesity and cancer that are being researched, but one of the best documented is that excess body fat can exacerbate hormone imbalance linked to cancer growth. This is especially true of some types of breast cancer and endometrial cancer, where the cancer cells have estrogen receptors and are fed by excessive levels of unbalanced estrogen.
The hormone insulin could be responsible for other forms of cancer, according to Donna Ryan, an oncologist and president of the Obesity Society. She suggests that people who are obese often experience increased insulin levels or insulin resistance, and that insulin can have an enormous impact on the growth of cancer cells.
Another possible link between obesity and cancer is that excess body fat can weaken the immune system and increase oxidative stress. This can result in DNA damage, which may lead to the formation of cancer cells. In the case of esophageal cancer, obesity can frequently lead to acid reflux, which damages the lower part of the esophagus and increases the cancer risk.
How does obesity affect cancer survival?
Obesity has been identified as a factor in cancer survival rates, with obese patients more likely to die as a result of cancer than cancer patients of a healthy weight. Even after cancer has been successfully treated, obesity continues to be a risk factor, and cancer survivors are encouraged to lose weight and take regular exercise to prevent cancer recurrence. Physical activity can also help regulate levels of unbalanced hormones, and this reduces the risk of cancer recurrence even further.
What can I do to reduce body fat?
There are various ways to lose weight and reduce body fat, and trying to combine these is generally more effective than just relying on one.
- Start eating healthily, by including more fruit, vegetables, and whole grains in your diet, and by reducing intake of high glycemic foods such as baked goods made with white flour.
- Change your eating patterns by making sure you eat breakfast, and don’t eat too late in the evening. Eating several small, healthy meals during the day is better than eating three large meals.
- Take regular exercise such as swimming, walking, or an exercise class. Any increase in physical activity will help weight loss, so get out and do the gardening or take the dog for a walk.
You may speed up weight loss safely and naturally by using natural weight loss aids such as Meta Trim. Such products maximize weight loss when combined with a healthy diet and regular exercise, and are perfect for losing weight, enhancing vitality, and reducing the risk of heart disease and cancer. They can also help metabolize fatty or fried foods.