To Your Health
May, 2008 (Vol. 02, Issue 05)
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Moderate Weight Gain May Increase Cancer Risk

By Editorial Staff

A review study published in the British research journal The Lancet suggests weight gain of approximately 30 pounds doubles your risk of developing certain types of cancer. The researchers found that such a weight gain doubled the risk for esophageal cancer in both men and women. For women, it more than doubled the risk for endometrial or gallbladder cancer and increased the risk by one-third for developing renal (kidney) cancer. In men, the risk for thyroid, colon or renal cancers increased.

The American Cancer Society offers the following straightforward tips to help you lower your weight and your risk for cancer:

Woman standing on a weight scale and reacting negativley about the reading. - Copyright – Stock Photo / Register Mark Keep active. The latest recommendations for adults call for at least 30 minutes of moderate to vigorous activity, five or more days a week, above and beyond your usual daily activities (like using the stairs instead of the elevator at your office or doing housework). Moderate activities include walking, biking, even gardening. Vigorous activities cause an increase in heart rate, breathing depth and frequency, and sweating.

Eat healthy. First, you need to eat no less than five servings of vegetables and fruits each day - and the more colorful the better! These foods are packed with vitamins, minerals, antioxidants, and many other good things that lower the risk of developing specific types of cancer. Second, aim for at least three servings of whole grains each day. There are easy ways to add whole grains to your diet -oatmeal at breakfast; whole-wheat bread or wraps for sandwiches at lunch; and brown rice for dinner. And third, cut back on processed meats and red meat. These foods are usually high in saturated fat, so cutting back also will help you lower your risk of heart disease.