Obesity is a significant health issue in the US and is linked to an increased risk of developing certain types of cancer. According to the American Cancer Society, 13 types of cancer, accounting for 40% of all cancers diagnosed in the US annually, are associated with obesity. These cancers include breast, ovarian, pancreatic, liver, colorectal, and others.
What’s Obesity? Obesity is determined by a person's BMI, which is a measure of their body fat based on their height and weight. A BMI of 25.0 to 29.9 is considered overweight, while a BMI of 30.0 or higher is considered obese. Being overweight or obese can lead to long-lasting inflammation and higher than normal levels of insulin, insulin-like growth factor, and sex hormones, which can increase the risk of developing cancer.
Weight Management is Self-care!.. To reduce the risk of obesity-related cancer, individuals should follow a healthy eating plan, engage in regular physical activity, and maintain a healthy weight. Healthcare providers can help patients maintain a healthy weight by measuring their weight, height, and BMI and connecting them to community services that offer healthy food and physical activity options. Behavioral interventions, including dietary changes and increased physical activity, can also help individuals lose 5% or more of their weight.
Alarming Surveys!.. According to recent surveys, about 42% of adults and 20% of children in the US have obesity. Adults with obesity are at a higher risk of developing many serious health conditions, including cancer. From 2005 to 2014, the rate of new cancers associated with overweight and obesity (except colorectal cancer) increased by 7%, while the rate of new cancers not associated with overweight and obesity dropped by 13%.
Other Factors that Impact!.. It's important to note that other factors can contribute to the development of cancer, including hormone levels, changes in genes, long-lasting infections, and tobacco and alcohol use. However, avoiding tobacco use and maintaining a healthy weight are crucial steps in reducing the risk of cancer. The most common obesity-related cancer among women is breast cancer after menopause, while the most common obesity-related cancer among men is colorectal cancer. More than 90% of new obesity-related cancers occur in individuals who are 50 years old or older.
In conclusion, maintaining a healthy weight is essential in reducing the risk of developing obesity-related cancers. Healthcare providers can help individuals achieve and maintain a healthy weight through regular monitoring and connecting them to community services and behavioral interventions. By adopting healthy habits, individuals can reduce their risk of developing cancer and improve their overall health and well-being.