Study shows more people under 50 diagnosed with cancer

NOW: Study shows more people under 50 diagnosed with cancer

SOUTH BEND, Ind. --- February is National Cancer Prevention Month, and with more young people being diagnosed with cancer in recent years, this month is meant for all adults to be aware of the trend and learn what they can do to lower their risk of diagnosis.

“It has been a very concerning trend for sure,” says Dr. Suneel Kamath, an oncologist at the Cleveland Clinic.

Recent research from Harvard University shows a concerning trend. . . more people under the age of 50 are being diagnosed with cancer.

“The ages on the list, that number has definitely been 15-20 years younger than in the past,” Dr. Kamath shares.

Researchers link the rise in cancer to changes in people’s diet, lifestyle, and weight earlier in life. They noted that people around the world are eating less-healthy diets, as well as exercising and sleeping less.

This leads researchers to believe that obesity is playing a major role when it comes to cancer in younger people.

“We know that excess energy really causes a lot of bad things in terms of metabolism and inflammation,” says Dr. Kamath.

According to the Trust for America’s Health State of Obesity Report for 2022, 41.9% of adults are obese.

Doctors warn there is a strong correlation between the rise in obesity rates and the rise of cancer diagnoses, and that the risk of cancer is being considered another harmful side effect of having excess weight.

“All of those things can be triggers for cancer, and that’s the same type of risk factor that really could affect many different tumor types.,” Dr. Kamath warns.

On top of taking preventative steps like a healthier diet and more exercise to prevent obesity, doctors recommend making sure you’re getting annual cancer screenings. Local clinics like South Bend Clinic offer those screenings.

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