Obesity may lead to cancer, says expert
Accumulation of excess fat in the body can lead to hormone-sensitive cancers such as breast cancer and cancer of the womb lining.health and fitness Updated: May 21, 2007 16:04 IST
Obesity may lead to cancer and one can avoid it by making simple changes in the lifestyles, says a British expert.
Obesity is the accumulation of excess fat in the body. It is considered a chronic long-term disease, like high blood pressure or diabetes. It can lead to many serious consequences for health.
"There has been plenty of attention recently on the problems of obesity, but a lot of people still do not realise how closely obesity is related to cancer," Greg Martin, cancer expert and science and research manager of the World Cancer Research Fund said.
Obesity is linked to hormone-sensitive cancers such as breast cancer and cancer of the womb lining.
It is also linked to oesophagus and bowel cancer, he said.
Martin believes obesity could trigger the disease because the adipose tissue, which stores fat around the stomach, produces the potentially carcinogenic hormone oestrogen, reported online edition of Daily Mail.
"The frustrating thing is that people can make simple changes to their lifestyle to reduce their chances of getting cancer," he said.
"It really is as simple as eating more healthily, making sure your portion size is not too big, and taking regular exercise. When you think what a devastating disease cancer is, it really is worth taking these simple steps because they can make a big difference", Martin added.
Obesity has reached epidemic proportions globally, according to the World Health Organisation (WHO) and the International Obesity Taskforce (IOTF). There are more than 1 billion overweight adults worldwide and at least 300 million of them obese.