Body Weight & Cancer Risk

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It’s no secret that obesity in American adults and children has grown over the last few decades. Studies show that being overweight may lead to a higher risk of getting certain cancers.

  • 71% of American adults are overweight or obese
  • Being overweight or obese likely raises a person’s risk of getting at least 13 types of cancer
  • Being overweight or obese may negatively affect the body’s immune system and inflammation, the body’s levels of certain hormones and proteins, and other factors that control cell growth
  • Body fatness, poor nutrition, physical inactivity and too much alcohol consumption contributes to 1 in 5 cancer deaths

Are you overweight or obese?
Here’s how to find out:

1. Measure your Body Mass Index (BMI):

Weight (lbs.) x 703 divided by Height (in.) x Height (in.)

2. What your results mean:

  • Underweight is < 18.5
  • Normal is 18.5 – 24.9
  • Overweight is 25 – 29.9
  • Obese is > 30

3. Take action if you fall in the overweight or obese range:

  • Eat fewer calories on a daily basis
  • Limit portion sizes
  • Eat less “junk” food; replace with fruits and veggies
  • Burn more calories; be more active
  • Limit sedentary behavior

Sources: www.cancer.org and https://www.uspreventiveservicestaskforce.org/Page/Name/uspstf-a-and-brecommendations/