ABDOMINAL FAT PROMOTES CANCER RISK
“Globally, the number of obesity cases has doubled since 1980. By 2014, more than 1.9 billion adults – 18 years and older – were overweight. Of this total, more than 600 million were obese. 39% of adults aged 18 and over were overweight and 13% were obese. Most of the world’s population lives in countries where overweight and obesity cause more deaths than underweight. By 2014, 41 million children under the age of 5 were overweight or obese.
THE NEED TO COMBAT OVERWEIGHT AND OBESITY
The overweight and obesity are bad for health is not new. According to the WHO , overweight and obesity are defined as ” an abnormal or excessive accumulation of fat that poses a health risk”, which prompts research to try to find constantly new avenues of reflection to eradicate this scourge and develop new global strategies for diet, exercise and health.
A new study offers new details showing that some protein released by fat in the body can cause a non-cancerous cell then become cancerous. Research has revealed that a lower layer of abdominal fat would be culpable, releasing a protein that promotes tumor growths.
ABDOMINAL OBESITY IS A MORE IMPORTANT FACTOR THAN BMI
It has been well established that obesity contributes to the risk of cancer , but the way it is caused is an issue that has not been fully explained. A new study from the Michigan State University (USA) now offers new details showing that some protein released from fat in the body can cause a non-cancerous cell to become cancerous.
“Although there have been several advances in cancer treatment and improved quality of life for patients, the number of new cases continues to grow. It is important to understand the cause so that we can work better to reduce the number of cancer cases using dietary modifications or therapeutic interventions,” the researchers said.
It is estimated that more than one third of the population is obese. Obesity has been linked to several types of cancer, including breast cancer , a colon cancer , prostate cancer, uterine cancer and kidney cancer, but still note that the e being overweight is not necessarily the best way to determine a person’s cancer risk .
Getting rid of obesity once and for all
The study suggests that body mass index (BMI) may not be the best indicator. What appears to be decisive is abdominal obesity, and more precisely, the levels of a protein called fibroblast growth factor type II may be a better indicator of the risk for the cells to become cancerous.
There are two layers of belly fat. The upper layer, known as subcutaneous fat, is found just below the skin . Under this layer there is visceral fat . Visceral fat lies around the internal organs and would be the cradle of a protein involved in cancer.
The study reveals that a fat-rich diet produces larger quantities of Type II fibroblast growth factor (FGF2) to this layer of fat. The researchers found that FGF2 stimulated certain cells that were already vulnerable to protein and pushed them to become tumors.
The researchers also collected visceral adipose tissue in women undergoing hysterectomies and found that when fat secretions had more of the FGF2 protein, more cells formed cancerous tumors when they were transferred to mice. ” This would indicate that the fat of mice and humans can transform a non-tumorigenic cell into a tumorigenic cell , ” said the team of researchers.
Obesity and Sedentary Lifestyles
Finally, there are several other factors, including the estrogen hormone, that could affect cancer risk, but many studies have only been able to show an association and not a direct cause of cancer.
The researchers also indicate that genetics play a role. This new study will make it possible to envisage the identification of new anticancer compounds to stop the effects of FGF2 indicates one of the principal authors of this study.
“There is always an element of chance to know if a person is going to get cancer or not. But by taking smarter choices in diet and exercise and avoiding harmful habits such as smoking, people can always help reduce the chances of cancer in their favor,” the researchers said.