Eating a Healthier Diet Can Reduce Obesity and Cancer Risk
Cancer prevention is not always about avoiding carcinogens. Avoiding carcinogenic substances like asbestos and benzene is important, but everyday behavior also needs to be modified to make sure cancer is not an issue later in life. One of the main choices people need to make is having a healthier diet. The simple step of eating healthier foods could improve overall health, allow someone to lose weight, and reduce the chances someone develops cancer later in life.
What does eating a healthy diet mean? Eating healthier could mean reducing fast food and other processed foods and eating more fruits, vegetables, and fiber. Eating fiber is known to protect people from bowel cancer because it can help push food through the bowel. Fiber rich wholegrain foods can also reduce obesity, increasing overall health. Eating fruits and vegetables can also help protect people from developing mouth, throat, and digestive tract cancers. These foods have vitamins, minerals, and phytochemicals that can help prevent cellular damage that can lead to cancer. Different fruits and vegetables contain different phytochemicals, so a balanced diet can help expose the body to different phytochemicals that fight cancer every day.
Obesity can cause cancer in different ways. Chronic inflammation, which causes DNA damage, is a main cause of cancer problems. Obese people are more likely to have chronic inflammation because of different conditions caused by obesity. They can have gastroesophageal reflux disease or Barret esophagus, which are causes of esophageal adenocarcinoma. Obesity can also cause gallstones, which can then lead to gallbladder cancer. Fat tissue also releases more estrogen than necessary, which can lead to breast, endometrial, ovarian, and other cancers. Obese people can also have large amounts of insulin and insulin like growth factor-1, which leads to colon, kidney, prostate, and endometrial cancers. Fat tissue also produces adipokines, which can inhibit or stimulate cell growth.
Obesity is a larger cause of cancer than some people might think. In 2012, it was estimated that 28,000 (3.5 percent) of new cancer cases in men were due to obesity while 72,000 (9.5 percent) of new cancer cases in women were from obesity. These cancers can vary, but 54 percent of gallbladder cancer cases in women and 44 percent of esophageal adenocarcinoma cases in women were attributed to obesity. Since reducing obesity reduces cancer, and diet is such large contributor to overall health and obesity, eating a healthier diet can help reduce cancer risk.
Were you diagnosed with cancer? You could be entitled to compensation, especially if you were exposed to a harmful carcinogen like benzene or asbestos. If you have acute myeloid leukemia, mesothelioma, or lung cancer and were exposed to either of those carcinogens, contact us by calling 412-471-3980 or by filling out our contact form to see what we can do for you. We want to get you the compensation you deserve!
“Obesity and Cancer” National Cancer Institute (January 17, 2017). [Link]
“Poor diet and cancer risk” World Cancer Research Fund [Link]