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techkenyot.com June 17, 2019


Obesity-linked cancers on the rise in young adults

06 February 2019, 02:24 | Silvia Roy

A new study has found links between obesity and cancer

A new study has found links between obesity and cancer

Dr Jemal said: 'Over the past few decades, death rates have been in decline for most cancers, but in the future obesity could reverse that progress, barring any interventions. Obesity is now one of the most preventable causes of cancer in both the United States and the UK - around 1 in 12 cases in the U.S. are caused by excess weight and more than 1 in 20 in the UK. This was true for half of the 12 cancers classified as related to obesity: colorectal, uterine corpus, gallbladder, kidney, pancreatic, and multiple myeloma (a type of bone marrow cancer).

In contrast to obesity-related cancers, rates of most of the 18 non-obesity related cancers did not increase among young adults during the study period.

Millennials - people born in the 1980s or '90s - have double the risk of some types of cancers compared with the rates baby boomers experienced at that age, according to the American Cancer Society. "And we know in people that obesity is associated with an increase in cancer and a worse prognosis for patients who have cancer". Only two types of non-obesity-related cancer, leukemia and a type of lower stomach cancer, increased among younger age groups during the study, suggesting that all cancer rates are not rising in this population.

Obesity is an emerging risk factor that is driving a number of important cancers, said Elizabeth Platz, a scholar in cancer prevention at Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health, in Baltimore.

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The American Cancer Society study, which used data covering half the U.S. population, found that six cancers known to be related to obesity were rising fastest among those under 50.

In a recent report, the researchers revealed a sharp rise in the rate of cancer forms caused by obesity in young adults across the US.

The rates of new cancer cases and cancer deaths have fallen in the USA over the past few decades.

They looked at 14,672,409 cases involving 30 of the most common cancer types, including 12 obesity-related cancers.

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"The quality of the American diet has worsened in recent decades", said lead author Hyuna Sung, also of the American Cancer Society.

A separate 2018 study found that excess body weight may have accounted for up to 60% of all endometrial cancers, 36% of gallbladder cancers, 33% of kidney cancers, 17% of pancreatic cancers, and 11% of multiple myelomas that occurred in 2014.

The current study did not include data on obesity and can only infer a link between obesity and rising cancer rates, says Schwartz. Others studies show the location of fat - such as fat in the abdomen - may impact cancer risk.

Although screening for most of these cancers isn't available or useful for younger patients, colon cancer is an exception, Jemal said.

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"Obesity during childhood actually is a major predictor of adult obesity", Chang said, "I think it highlights the importance of reducing the rates of obesity through better diet, better and more exercise. We need, as a society, to figure out ways to prevent, much more effectively than we do now, individuals from developing obesity".



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