Rise in Obesity-Related Cancers

October 27, 2017 in LifeCare Health Services

The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) revealed some new statistics about cancer trends in a report published recently. They outline an increase in cancer rates among 12 cancers related to obesity and being overweight. In 2014, approximately 1.6 million cancer diagnoses happened. Out of that number, 631,000, or about 40%, of them were for cancers related to obesity and being overweight. Since 2005, obesity-related cancers rose by 7% while all other kinds of cancer fell by 13%.

Doctors consider 13 cancers to be weight-related. They are: esophageal, breast, colon/rectum, endometrium, gallbladder, gastric cardia, kidney, liver, ovarian, pancreas, thyroid, meningioma, and multiple myeloma. Colon cancer stands out as the one weight-related cancer that did not increase. This result is probably because of increased screening for colon cancer.

Women were more likely to receive a diagnosis of an obesity-related cancer than men, 55 vs. 24%. However, this is mostly because there are female-specific cancers included in those statistics. When measuring the cancers that can affect men and women, men were more likely to have all of them except for thyroid and gallbladder cancer.

What these results mean is that it is important to try and maintain a healthy weight. It may not eliminate the risk of cancer fully, but this is just another article showing the importance of a healthy weight.


Steele CB, Thomas CC, Henley SJ, et al. “Vital Signs: Trends in Incidence of Cancers Associated with Overweight and Obesity — United States, 2005–2014”. Mobility and Mortality Weekly Report Vol 66, Issue 39, pp. 1052–1058. DOI: http://dx.doi.org/10.15585/mmwr.mm6639e1.

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