While only seven percent of Americans surveyed in a recent poll mentioned cancer as a consequence of obesity, local experts emphasize that the link between obesity and cancer is real.
Obesity, which is a body mass index of 30 or above, has been associated with a greater risk of developing several types of cancer, according to Dr. James Swain, a bariatric surgeon at Scottsdale Healthcare Bariatric Center.
“There are several potential medical reasons, including the fact that fat tissue produces extra estrogen and high estrogen levels have been correlated with greater risk of endometrial, breast and other cancers,” he said.
Obese individuals also frequently have high levels of insulin in their bloodstreams, which may encourage the development of some tumors, Swain added.
Other possible factors include that obese individuals frequently have ongoing, low-level inflammation, which has been linked to increased cancer risk.
Individuals who are obese may be able to lower their cancer risk through bariatric surgery. The National Institutes of Health, which is part of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, points to studies showing that obese individuals who undergo weight-loss surgery have lower rates of obesity-related cancer than obese individuals who do not have bariatric surgery.
Scottsdale Healthcare Bariatric Center, designated a Center of Excellence in Bariatric Surgery by the American Society for Metabolic and Bariatric Surgery, offers free public seminars on bariatric surgery. Details and seminar registration are at bariatricsurgeryaz.com.
The Associated Press-NORC Center for Public Affairs Research poll was conducted in late November and early December.
- Skin Cancer in Arizona: Stats, facts and new immunotherapy drugs making strides
- Distracted walking injuries end up not so funny
- Scary situations: 5 quick tips before you let a contractor in your home
- Four ways telemedicine is changing the health care industry
- 5 mistakes homeowners make in the spring
- Three rivers run through it: Exploring Arizona's waterways
- Smart home basics: things you need to know to get started
- 5 Surprising things causing back pain
- Arizona agriculture is a $17.1B industry
- Timeline: Arizona's roots in brewing history
- 5 reasons to love the D-backs this season
- Tips for taking your home entertainment experience to the backyard
- Tech-related injuries your parents never experienced
- Workers comp: Signs your co-worker could be a fraud
- Who's the real founder of America's pastime?
- Epidemic rising? What you need to know about Alzheimer's in Arizona
- 5 unforgettable Wooden Award winners
- Family and hard work are keys to success of modern dairy farmers
- Genetic testing could hold answers for colon cancer survival
- Cold beers and baseball: A beer lover's guide to Spring Training
- Telecommuting: 5 tips to make it work for employers and employees
- See how top CFOs feel about economic growth in the Valley
- Migraine myths that keep patients from effective treatments
- Here’s why Gaydos went tankless with his water heater
- Bocce ball and basketball: How you can help Arizona's Special Olympics athletes
- Tips on building the best wine room in Arizona
- Avoid the nightmare: 6 tips to choose a great contractor
- Breast cancer: Improved testing and treatments means more survivors
- Failed back surgery: New hope for patients living in pain
- Ticking time bombs: Telltale signs your water heater is about to explode