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Study on Obesity and Liver Cancer

Researchers Find a Concerning Link Between Obesity and Liver Cancer

A recent study outlined a worrisome link between obesity, diabetes, and liver cancer. In Cancer Research, a journal from the American Association for Cancer Research, a research team announced that a high body mass index, larger waist circumference, and diabetes can all increase the risk for liver cancer.

The researchers looked at 14 different studies — amounting to over one million participants — and noticed that liver cancer diagnoses increased as participants' respective body mass indexes increased. The risk for liver cancer was also affected by the subjects' waist circumferences. Meaning, subjects whose weight was more concentrated at the waist would have a higher risk of developing liver cancer even if their body mass indexes were the same as another subject with a lower risk.

Lastly, the study found that many of the high-risk subjects also had type 2 diabetes mellitus, a diabetes type partly caused by obesity.

The findings are changing the public's preconceived notions about liver cancer and its causes. In a press statement, Peter Campbell of the American Cancer Society said, "Liver cancer isn't simply related to excess alcohol intake and viral hepatitis infection." Adding, "This is yet another reason to maintain a body weight in the 'normal' range for your height."

Image Source: POPSUGAR Photography / Sheila Gim
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