A review of more than a thousand studies has found solid evidence that being overweight or obese increases the risk of multiple types of cancer.
The new review, published in The New England Journal of Medicine, links 13 different cancers with excess fat: adenocarcinoma of the esophagus; colorectal cancer; breast cancer in postmenopausal women; uterine cancer; kidney cancer; gastric cardia, a cancer of the part of the stomach closest to the esophagus; liver cancer; gallbladder cancer; pancreatic cancer; thyroid cancer; ovarian cancer; meningioma, a usually benign type of brain tumor; and multiple myeloma, a blood cancer.
“Only smoking comes close” as an environmental factor affecting cancer risk, Dr. Graham Colditz, the chairman of the working group and a professor of medicine and surgery at Washington University in St. Louis, USA.
“an important message for nonsmokers”
“That’s an important message for nonsmokers,” he says, adding, “obesity now goes to the top of the list of things to focus on.”
According to Dr. Colditz, these 13 cancers together account for almost half (42%) of all new cancer diagnoses.
In a report by the New York Times, Elizabeth A. Platz, a professor of epidemiology at the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health and a widely published cancer researcher who was not involved in the report, said that this was a “high-caliber working group of respected epidemiologists and laboratory researchers,” and that women in particular should take note of the results.
For some cancers, the group found that the fatter the person, the greater the risk.
For example, in endometrial cancer, compared with a woman of normal weight – based on the Body Mass Index (BMI):
- BMI between 25 and 29.9 caused a 50 percent higher relative risk
- BMI between 30 and 34.9 more than doubled the risk
- BMI between 35 to 39.9 more than quadrupled the risk
- BMI of 40 or more was at seven times the risk of endometrial cancer
Does losing weight reduce the risk?
Although animal studies suggest that it does. Here is the scary thing, scientists have been unable to replicate these findings in humans.
Dr. Colditz said, “it’s hard to study in humans because so few people lose weight and keep it off. But the priority of avoiding weight gain is the first thing we need to address.”
This is why sustainable weight loss is key.
Many people rave about the results that can be achieved by a 28 day or 60 day juice challenge / reboot. Whilst I agree that great progress can be made, these results are rarely sustained.
From my experience I have to say embracing a lifestyle that includes getting back to nature and consuming lots of plant based foods is the way to achieve sustained weight loss.
I’m not saying you need to quit all processed foods, meat and dairy, but focusing on consuming a high levels of plants feeds our cells the nutrients they crave.
Juicing is a great tool for increasing your intake of plant-based nutrients and something that has been a major catalyst in my own transformation and the many success stories shared on this site, but you don’t have to do a juice fast / juice detox / reboot to get results. Even simply adding one or two freshly extracted vegetable juices per day can start to give great health benefits.
If you focus on health, weight loss is often a side effect.
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