Being overweight or obese means a person carries extra fat on the abdomen region. Extra fat in the body is active & sends out signals to the rest of your body. These signals can tell cells in our body to divide more often which can lead to cancer.
WHAT DOES FAT DO IN THE BODY?
It has 2 main functions;
- acts as a store of energy
- Constantly sending messages to the rest of your body which affects cell growth, chemical reactions in cells, and the body’s reproductive cycles.
These signals affect;
- Growth hormones – Increased visceral fat triggers inflammation which also causes insulin resistance. When body doesn’t respond to the insulin properly, it produces more insulin. Increased insulin due to insulin resistance causes in the increased number of cells which leads to cancer.
- Inflammation– when there are more fat cells in the body, there is low oxygen present which triggers inflammation. Long term inflammation caused by visceral fat damages the body, increasing the risk of cancer.
- Sex hormones– estrogen is essential for the body functions. Higher estrogen levels leads to increased cell production which initiates tumor growth. Fat cells in both males and females generate estrogen. In females high estrogen levels increases the risk of post menopausal breast cancer, endometrial & ovarian cancer.
WHAT YOU CAN DO TO DECREASE THE RISK OF CANCER?
Maintaining a healthy weight is very important to decrease the risk of cancer.
- STAY ACTIVE: Exercising helps the body to maintain healthy weight. Aim to do 45 mins of activity 5 days a week.
- EAT CLEAN: Healthy diet is essential to maintain healthy weight. Include more fiber in form of vegetables and fruits and reduce the intake of starchy food like potato, breads, and chips.
- DRINK MORE WATER: Water helps in detoxifying the body. Less water intake dehydrates the body and slows down the metabolism which results in weight gain.
- TAKE GOOD REST: Getting enough sleep is important to maintain a healthy lifestyle. If a body doesn’t get enough sleep and goes under fatigue it will cause hunger pranks leading to unhealthy diet.