Obesity Before The Age Of 40 Is An Alarming Risk For Cancer: Study


A study published by the University of Bergen suggests that being overweight is an indicator for individuals for the risk of cancer. Read on to know more.

Written By Jiya Chulet | Mumbai | Updated On:

A study published in the International Journal of Epidemiology suggests that the rate of overweight individuals below the age of 40 is alarmingly increasing. This high rate indicates the risk of developing different types of cancer. The research conducted by the University of Bergen collected the data of 220,000 adults from Norway, Sweden, and Austria. The researchers linked the data of participants' health examination including height and weight with the data of national cancer registries. According to the reports, the participants were being monitored on an average of 18 years. 

READ | UNICEF Report: 1-in-3 Young Children Undernourished Or Overweight

The study showed that if you were overweight before the age of 40, the risk of developing cancer increases by the following:

-70% for endometrial cancer

-58% for male renal-cell cancer

-29% for male colon cancer and

-15% for all obesity-related cancers (both sexes)

READ | Japan With Lowest Infant Mortality Rate And Few Underweight Children

One of the professors at the University of Bergen, named Tone Bjorge reportedly explained obesity as a risk factor for several types of cancers. She stated that they focused on the degree, timing and duration of overweight and obesity concerning cancer risk for the study. She also added that the major concern of the study is preventing weight gain. Bjorge mentioned that the risk increased by 64 % for male participants and 48 % for females.

READ | Intermittent Fasting Diet | Health Benefits Of This Diet Plan To Know

What is obesity?

Obesity is a condition in which a person has an unhealthy amount of body fat. Researchers used a scale known as the Body Mass Index (BMI) to calculate obesity. Body Mass Index is calculated by dividing a person’s weight (in kilograms) by their height (in meter square).

Reportedly the standard weight categories based on Body Mass Index (BMI) for adults are mentioned below:

BMI in kg/m2 Weight Category
Below 18.5 Underweight 
18.5 to 24.9 Normal
25.0 to 29.9  Overweight
30.0 to 39.9 Obese
40.0 or High Severely Obese


READ | Keto Diet: Know What Food To Eat In Your Weight Loss Plan

By 2030, 40% Indians will not have access to drinking water