Obesity and cancer: Epidemiological evidence

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2 Scopus citations


Obesity, excessive body fat, is often defined by the body mass index (BMI, kg/m2) in observational studies. A body of evidence showed that obesity in mid-life increases the risk of cancers, particularly those in esophagus (adenocarcinoma), gastric cardia, liver, gallbladder, pancreas, colon and rectum, kidney, thyroid, breast (postmenopausal), endometrium, and ovary and multiple myeloma. Emerging evidence also suggests that body fatness at adolescence and early adulthood is associated with a higher risk of cancer in later life, particularly those known to be associated with obesity in late adulthood. Several biological mechanisms explain the link between obesity and cancer.

Original languageEnglish
Title of host publicationEncyclopedia of Cancer
Number of pages10
ISBN (Electronic)9780128124857
StatePublished - Jan 1 2018


  • Abdominal obesity
  • Body mass index
  • Breast cancer
  • Cancer
  • Colorectal cancer
  • Endometrial cancer
  • Esophagus cancer (adenocarcinoma)
  • Kidney cancer
  • Liver cancer
  • Multiple myeloma
  • Obesity
  • Obesity in early life
  • Ovarian cancer
  • Pancreatic cancer
  • Stomach cardia cancer
  • Thyroid cancer
  • Weight gain


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