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Cancer has always been a health concern, especially as you age. But a recent study has pointed out that some types are increasing dramatically in young people.

The study found the rates of certain cancers are definitely linked to obesity, including colorectal, kidney and pancreatic cancer, and are increasing among adults ages 25 to 49, with steeper rises seen in the youngest age groups. What’s more alarming, millennials are reportedly having about double the risk of developing certain obesity-related cancers

The study is serving as a warning sign of a future rise in cancer rates. As millennials get older, it could potentially slow down or reverse the progress achieved in cutting down cancer mortality over the past several decades.

What Is Causing The Increases?

As said, obesity has been the prime reason for the increase. The study also noted the excess body weight may have accounted for up to 60% of all endometrial cancers, 36% of gallbladder cancers, and 33% of kidney cancers that occurred over the past few years. Regarding gastrointestinal cancer, increases in autoimmune disease, antibiotic use and exposure to environmental carcinogens are likely to blame.

Should We Be Worried?

All cancers cannot be prevented. But preventive care can help. For example, we know that the risk for certain cancers may increase the longer a person is obese. Obese kids tend to carry their body weight into their adulthood. It means young people who are growing up now have a longer cumulative lifetime exposure to body fat compared to those in the older people group.

Increasing evidence supports that excess body weight during young adulthood tends to increase risks for certain cancers later in life. That’s why it is our prerogative to be careful about measuring body fat properly time-to-time, weight gain at different ages, and how fast someone is gaining weight. Younger generations are experiencing earlier and longer-lasting exposure to excess fat and to obesity-related health conditions that can increase cancer risk.

Caution Needed

It’s important to remember that although millennials tend to experience greater rises in the rates of some obesity-related cancers, the overall incidence of these cancers is lower in them than older adults. But the problem is people with obesity wait longer to seek surgical help and that delay often puts them at increased risk of developing obesity-related conditions.

Addressing this time gap is key to managing their excess weight. People with obesity have also to remain vigilant about their health and weight, as cancers related to obesity show the most significant increases.

Consult with your GP who can suggest how to monitor your weight properly and counsel you about the health risks of obesity while promoting physical activities and diet changes to lose weight. When all attempts have failed and bariatric surgery is the only option then a bariatric surgeon can advise you which of the weight loss procedures will be appropriate based on your health conditions. 

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