Researchers from the International Agency for Research on Cancer claim in their new research that nearly half a million of new annual cancer cases are linked to BMI.
BMI (High Body Mass Index) is known to be a threat for cancers that affect the colon, kidneys, breasts, endometrium, ovaries, gallbladder, pancreas and esophagus.
The new research, analyzing data from 2012, claims that 3.6 percent of the worldwide cases of cancer are linked to BMI, and that the cancer as a result of obesity or overweight is less present in undeveloped countries than in developed ones.
Dr. Isabelle Soerjomataram, co-author of the study explains:
“Overall, we see that while the number of cancer cases associated with overweight and obesity remains highest in richer countries, similar effects are already visible in parts of the developing world,”
About 23 percent of the worldwide cancer cases linked to BMI is in the United States, where it is estimated that 111,000 obesity related cancers have emerged in 2012. Eastern Europe accounts for 6.5 percent with 65,000 of new cancer cases linked to BMI.
In Asian countries, the percentage of cancer cases linked to BMI is not very large, but because of the size of the population, the researchers say “it still translates into a considerable absolute number of cases.”
For example, even though just 1.6 percent of new cancer cases in China were found to be linked to obesity and overweight, this still meant 50,000 total cancer cases.
The scientists have compared this occurrence to rates in Africa, where only 1.5 percent of new cancer cases are linked to obesity and overweight. The total number of cases in the entire African continent was only 7,300 in 2012.
In the research, it was found that cancer cases linked to BMI varied across countries regarding gender. Cancer cases linked to BMI in men were highest in Czech Republic with 5.5 percent, Jordan with 4.5 percent and UK and Malta both 4.4 percent. Women with cancer cases linked to BMI were most present in Barbados with 12.7 percent, Czech Republic with 12.0 percent and Puerto Rico with 11.6 percent new cancer cases.
The proportion of new cancer cases linked to BMI affecting women was 5.3 percent compared with only 1.9 percent among men.