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Obesity, Cancer’s New Best Friend

News | Adelaide Bariatric Centre

5 Mar 2014 11:28 AM

Obesity and Cancer

A recent World Health Organisation study has highlighted obesity as the second biggest preventable cause of cancer in Australia, followed only by smoking. The study also showed cancer to be the leading cause of death both in Australia and many countries worldwide, claiming 8.2 million lives a year. Frighteningly, this figure is predicted to rise by 75 per cent over the next 20 years

In Western nations, lifestyle factors tend to be the primary contributing causes of cancer, with weight, alcohol consumption, and physical activity all placing Australians at risk of developing the disease.

For those who don’t smoke, being obese was revealed by the study to be the single greatest preventable risk factor for cancer, once again highlighting the importance of maintaining a healthy weight.

With reports from the Australian Bureau Of Statistics placing the number of technically overweight or obese Australians at 28% of the population, the option of weight loss surgery is a step that more people are considering.

So, what can Australians do if they are concerned about how their weight may contribute to their risk of developing cancer? Some key steps toward preventing the obesity cancer risk include:

  • Maintaining a healthy diet and ongoing physical activity if you’re in otherwise good health and just need to return to a healthy weight.
  • Booking a cancer screening if you’re concerned about your health, particularly if there’s a history of cancer within your family.
  • Talking to a consultant about weight loss surgery if you are in the overweight or obese category, and concerned that you may be at risk.