Body Size Matters with Colon Cancer
Obesity doesn’t just raise older women’s risk of developing colon cancer, it may also increase their risk of dying from it.
That’s according to research led by SPH epidemiologist Anna Prizment. In an analysis of 1,100 postmenopausal women diagnosed with colon cancer between 1986 and 2005, her team found that women carrying excess weight in the waist and hips may be at increased risk of death.
The researchers documented each woman’s body mass index, waist-to-hip ratio, and waistline. They found that obese women were 45 percent more likely to die from all causes than their healthyweight counterparts.
Body shape appeared to have a particular link to mortality rates. Women with a high waist-to-hip ratio had a 30 to 40 percent increased chance of dying from colon cancer.
The researchers say the findings underscore the importance of women to maintain a healthy weight throughout their life, especially after menopause.