Excess Weight Could Become 2nd Leading Cause of Preventable Cancer

A warning for Canadian adults carrying excess weight.

We’re packing on some serious excess weight here in the true North – so much so that obesity is on course to become the 2nd leading preventable cause of cancer among adult Canadians. A Canadian Cancer Society (CCS)-funded study released Wednesday has found that, unless Canada makes changes, by 2042, the number of cancer cases due to excess weight will nearly triple.

Canadian adults need to be more active

omPARe study also showed that currently the top five leading preventable causes of cancer are smoking tobacco, followed by physical inactivity, excess weight, low fruit, and sun.
The top five leading preventable causes of cancer are smoking tobacco, followed by physical inactivity, excess weight, low fruit, and sun.

The Canadian Population Attributable Risk of Cancer (ComPARe) study, published by Preventive Medicine for CCS, estimated one in two Canadian adults have excess weight. This puts them at increased risk for at least 13 different types of cancer, including breast, colorectal, endometrial and esophageal cancers. The ComPARe study revealed that as many as 4 in 10 cancer cases can be prevented.

In addition, the ComPARe study also showed that currently the top five leading preventable causes of cancer are smoking tobacco, followed by physical inactivity, excess weight, low fruit, and sun.

If more Canadians had a healthy body weight, about 110,600 cases of cancer could be prevented by 2042

The Canadian Population Attributable Risk of Cancer (ComPARe) study estimated one in two Canadian adults have excess weight.
The Canadian Population Attributable Risk of Cancer (ComPARe) study estimated one in two Canadian adults have excess weight.

“We are committed to improving and saving lives and preventing cancer is an important part of this commitment,” says Dr Leah Smith, Senior Manager, Surveillance at CCS said in a release. “This new study gives us insight into where we can make the biggest difference in cancer prevention for Canadians so they can live their lives to the fullest.”

The Canadian Cancer Society has also advocated for labelling to be switched from the back of food packages to the front side. The CCS also called for a restriction to be put on marketing to kids, and the implementation of a manufacturers’ tax on sugar rich drinks.