One of the most common New Year’s resolutions is to lose weight. For Nebraskans who aren’t doing so well with their goal, Chuck Reed at the American Cancer Society, says cancer risks rise with your weight.
Reed says the impact of obesity as a factor in cancer cases is often overlooked. Reed says too many people think of diabetes, heart disease or stroke as the main illness associated with being overweight, but he says cancer is right up there with them.
Studies on the issue show some “mind numbing” numbers. He says if you are obese or overweight, you increase your chances of getting breast cancer by 38% and your chances of getting lung cancer — the number one cause of cancer deaths death — by 36%. Reed says the chances of getting esophageal cancer increases by almost 70% for people who are overweight.
“We’ve really made an effort to inform people that being obese and being overweight, dramatically increase your chances of getting cancer, I’m not sure a lot of people know that,” Reed says.
Reed says smoking is the most preventable cause of cancer, and quitting along with other healthier lifestyle changes, can make a big difference.
Reed says avoid eating a lot of processed red meats, limit your alcohol consumption, exercise at least 30 minutes a day, five times a week. He says those things can reduce your chances of cancer 60 to 70%.
Go to the American Cancer Society’s website for help in losing weight. Reed says, “We’ve got some resources that will help you year round, not just in the month of January when everyone is gung ho about the New Year’s resolution to lose 20 pounds.”
Visit the site at: www.cancer.org. Or you can call any time, day or night, at 1-800-227-2345.