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Independents' Day

Mediawatch - 'Weight gain doubles breast cancer risk'

Women who put on more than X pounds can increase their risk of breast cancer later in life by as much as Y times, report the Daily Express and the Daily Mail.

The Source

Researchers at the National Cancer Institute in Maryland, US, analysed data from 99,039 post menopausal women to examine the relation between adult weight change and breast cancer risk.

They found that weight gain of more than 50kg between the ages of 18 and 50 increased the risk of breast cancer by 2.15 times, but only in women not using hormone replacement therapy. The average weight gain was 15.6kg. The study is published in the Archives of Internal Medicine.

The Expert

Professor Jack Cuzack, professor of epidemiology at the Wolfson Institute of Preventive Medicine at Queen Mary University London, said:

‘We've known for a long time that BMI is risk factor for breast cancer. This is because oestrogen is mostly produced by metabolism of peripheral fat.

‘Reducing fat levels does lead to reduction in risk. This is very encouraging because your breast cancer is not determined at an early age, but there are things that middle aged women can do to reduce their risk.'

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