The Seriously Serious Problems of Obesity, Part 2 of 5 — Cancer and Obesity
In this Part 2 of a 5 part series: Cancer and Obesity.
This is part two of a five-part series about the many chronic and debilitating health issues connected to obesity. This article focuses on the cancer/obesity nexus. Please scroll to the bottom of this post for the list (and links) to the other posts in this series.
ACCORDING TO the National Cancer Institute, in addition to increasing the risk of coronary heart disease, stroke, high blood pressure, and diabetes, obesity increases the risk of cancers of the breast (postmenopausal), endometrium (the lining of the uterus), colon, kidney, and esophagus.
A CNN report presents some sobering numbers: Over 100,000 cancer cases each year are due to excess body fat. Here are some types of cancer and the percent caused by excess body fat (they’re not calling it “obesity” in this CNN report):
- endometrial cancers 49%
- esophageal cancer 35%
- pancreatic cancer 28%
- kidney cancer 24%
- gallbladder cancer 21%
- breast cancer 17%
- colorectal cancer 9%
Everyone knows someone who has battled cancer, and we may wonder if it will happen to us. It’s not totally unexpected if a person smokes, gorges unrelentingly on extra crisp barbeque meat, drinks excessively, or works in a Chinese uranium mine.
The thing that hits us particularly hard is when the cancer come sneaking up on us, out of the blue and totally unexpected, even though we’ve been living a healthy life.
How in the heck did Dana Reeve, wife of superman actor Christopher Reeve, die of lung cancer at age 44? She didn’t smoke. She seemed perfectly healthy before her dreadful diagnosis.
Thankfully, most of us don’t smoke, drink excessively, mine, or barbeque 24×7, and so, even though it seems like it can happen unpredictably and for no good reason, we think it’s unlikely to happen to us.
Thing is, although most of us don’t do all that stuff, most of us are overweight.
According to Wikipedia, about 64% of the U.S. population is overweight or obese. My math is good enough to definitively declare that that’s most of us. When you learn that consistently adding pounds may eventually put you in a high risk category for cancer, all of a sudden you get that sinking feeling.
Like descending into that uranium mine shaft.
How did abusing cheeseburgers and French fries get to be such a bad thing? Like many things in life, it got bad when it became imbalanced and overdone.
If you, or someone you know, is in this high risk category for cancer (and the next three serious health calamities that obesity increases the risk of, the second of which I’ll post tomorrow), let this be a wake-up call.
Continue Reading >
The alarm is ringing… want to read up on a new eating plan? Click on “Diet/Nutrition” under “Categories” in the sidebar on the right hand side of your screen. There are several helpful posts listed there.
These are the titles and links to each of my five-part series on obesity:
Focus: Introduction to the many ills associated with obesity
You’ve just read this one, where the focus is on cancer’s relationship to obesity
Focus: Diabetes’ (type 2) relationship to obesity
Focus: Brain Degeneration’s relationship to Obesity
Focus: Sleep Apnea’s relationship to obesity