CDC: 40 Percent Of U.S. Cancer Cases Linked To Being Overweight

CBS Local — A new report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) is drawing a disturbing connection between obesity and over a dozen forms of cancer.

According to the department’s latest edition of Vital Signs, at least 13 different types of the disease have been linked to being overweight or obese. U.S. health officials say 40 percent of all cancer diagnoses in the country were associated with obesity in 2014. Older Americans were at even great risk as two-thirds of the cases were in adults between 50 and 74.

“A majority of American adults weigh more than recommended – and being overweight or obese puts people at higher risk for a number of cancers,” CDC director Brenda Fitzgerald said. “By getting to and keeping a healthy weight, we all can play a role in cancer prevention.”

The findings also pointed to the number of obesity-related cancers growing over the last decade. The study found that cancers tied to obesity increased by seven percent between 2005 and 2014. That number did not include colorectal cancer. Cancers that weren’t associated with obesity declined in the U.S. by 13 percent.

“What we need to talk about is preventing cancer, eating better,” Ohio State University professor Theodore Brasky said. “Those approaches are cost effective and have a bigger impact. It’s so much easier to not get cancer than to have to deal with treating it.” According to the CDC, two out of three adults in the U.S. were overweight in 2014.

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