Obesity may increase risk of 13 different cancers in young adults, suggests a new study. The study published in the journal Obesity, demonstrated how obesity may shift certain cancers to younger age groups, and intensify cellular mechanisms promoting the disease.
The increasing frequency of cancer in young adults has taken the entire medical circuit by storm. Earlier the disease was associated with people in their 50's.
The new meta-analyses integrates animal studies, clinical trials, and public health data to help explain rising cancer rates among young adult, and its close link with being overweight.
Explaining how the childhood obesity "pandemic" promotes cancer, the study also offered approaches to better track the health crisis, and hopefully avert the risk.
Obesity is a disorder characterized by excessive body fat that increases the risk of health problems. Young people with body mass indexes (BMIs) over 30 are more likely to experience aggressive malignancies, noted the authors of the study.
The risk of cancer may remain even after the weight loss. The greater the body weight, the greater is the risk of cancer. It may alter a person's DNA, that may add up with time, which may even stay long after weight loss. If you lose weight, it improves the prognosis and may lower your risk, but it never goes away completely, noted the researchers.
The state of obesity is closely linked to stages of cancer progression. According to the researchers, being overweight triggers the immune system in such a way, that they produce harmful byproducts like peroxide and oxygen radicals that mutate DNA.
Obesity can also take a direct toll on your metabolism. It can alter it in a way, causing growth factor and hormone imbalances that help cancer cells to grow and multiply.
The changes in the gut flora, could be severely affected by obesity too. These changes may facilitate tumor-promoting species to thrive.
The scientists also explained how acid reflux in overweight individuals may damage swallowing tubes and elevate the risk of esophageal cancer.
The researchers said, even if one is successful in blocking one pathway, the obesity- induced cancer takes another path, and the trigger multiple other risks.
One of the studies that were part of the meta-analysis was conducted on 1.1 million Israeli men who were tracked over time. Those who were overweight in adolescence (age 16-19) had a 1.5-fold increased risk of developing colon cancer by age 48.
The researchers reinforced the idea of documenting health data, including BMI, throughout a patient's life. Doctors are advised to always scan for the history of obesity. Many cancer patients present after significant weight loss, which could cause doctors to overlook obesity-related factors.
Electronic medical records may help build databases that can detect weight loss patterns, the researcher suggested. About, 110 million children and adolescents with obesity worldwide remain at risk of developing obesity-associated cancers. A comprehensive data tracking the weight gain and weight of these children are a need of the hour.
From children to adults, obesity sees no age and can affect anybody. Re-organising your kitchen, swapping the fat-laden unhealthy junk with nutrient-dense food is the best gift you can give to yourself. Swap refined carb sources for whole grains. Whole grain manages to retain all the nutrients that are processed in the refining. Stock up on whole grains like bajra, ragi, maize and jowar and use them often. Try red, black and brown rice instead of white rice .You can use these whole grains for breakfast porridges. Just like grains, whole dals are also a better bet than the washed dals. Rajma, and chana dals are some of the healthiest dals you can fill up your shelves with. You can cook them, have them in sprouts or in soups. Avoid red meat and opt for lean meat like chicken and salmon. Adding protein with every meal could prove to be a game changer for anyone trying to lose weight. Load up on seasonal vegetables. They provide both soluble and insoluble fibres in addition to vitamins, minerals and antioxidants.
Starving is not a sustainable way to lose weight. A balanced and healthy diet can help one manage obesity better.