As someone who has recently lost weight (22 pounds or 9.7kg in new money) I was interested to read a recent study published in The Lancet.
A recent cancer diagnosis within my family made me stop and think. I’m middle-aged and clearly I wasn’t doing myself any favours by being overweight, potentially storing up problems for later in life. And I felt pretty miserable actually as I knew I owed it to myself to look and feel better. I still have a bit of weight I’d like to lose, but the difference the weight loss has made is not to be under-estimated.
The study in The Lancet shows a clear link between obesity and cancer. The US Centers for Disease Control and Prevention released their report on cancer and obesity last week. It highlights that cancers associated with being overweight and obese, including thyroid, liver, kidney, and ovarian cancer, account for 40% of cancers diagnosed in the USA, with over 630,000 diagnoses in 2014 alone.
The study looked at data from the United States Cancer Statistics for 2005-2014. Disparities between sexes in the rates of cancers associated with obesity are especially frightening, with 55% of all cancers diagnosed in women being associated with overweight and obesity, compared with only 24% of cancers in men.
And, the likelihood is that these trends will be similar in the UK so we need to take note.
Losing weight isn’t easy and it takes time. And as well as losing the weight it’s important to eat a healthy, low calorie diet, get plenty of sleep and exercise. It has to be approached holistically. There are also some great apps out there to help you monitor your food intake, weight loss, sleep and exercise.
But, before embarking on any changes in nutrition and exercise, it is advisable to see your GP.