Obesity and Cancer: What's the Connection

Researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Cancer Institute assessed cancer incidence rates from 2005 to 2014 to identify trends for cancers associated with being overweight or obese.

Researchers from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention and the National Cancer Institute assessed cancer incidence rates from 2005 to 2014 to identify trends for cancers associated with being overweight or obese.

While it is known that the number of people who are overweight and obese is on the rise, it is not known if cancer incidence among these people also is rising.

In 2014, 631,000 persons in the United States were diagnosed with cancers associated with being overweight and or obese, representing 40% of all cancers diagnosed. Overweight- and obesity-related cancer incidence rates were higher among older people (ages ≥50 years) than younger people. Higher rates of obesity-related cancers were higher among women than men, and higher among non-Hispanic black and non-Hispanic white adults compared with other groups.

The researchers concluded that expanding efforts to prevent and treat obesity are needed, and would assist in reducing the incidence of obesity-related cancers. The study findings are available here.