Rates of Cancer Associated With Overweight and Obesity Register Significant Increases from 2005 to 2015, Says CDC

America’s obesity and overweight problem is also a cancer problem. According to the US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC), the US has witnessed a 7% increase in overweight- and obesity-related cancers (other than colorectal cancer) over 10 years, with some types of overweight- and obesity-related cancer rates increasing from 26% to 40%.

The findings appear in an October 3 CDC report on a study of data from the United States Cancer Statistics (USCS) data set between 2005 and 2014. Researchers tracked incidence rates for 13 types of cancer associated with overweight and obesity: cancers of the esophagus, breast, endometrium, gallbladder, gastric cardia, kidney, liver, ovary, pancreas, thyroid, meningioma, plasma cells (myeloma), and colon/rectum. Researchers looked at overall rates as well as rates by age, sex, and race/ethnicity. Here’s what they found:

  • Overall, the overweight/obesity-related (OOR) cancer rate declined by 2% between 2005 and 2014, but that doesn’t tell the whole story. Researchers believe that the overall decrease was largely driven by a 23% decline in colorectal cancers, which have a high rate to begin with. Authors think that more widespread detection and removal of precancerous polyps are responsible for the drop in that cancer type.

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