Scientists recently found in a study that post menopausal women who lose weight are at a significantly lower risk of developing breast cancer. It was found that even a ‘relatively modest’ reduction in weight can have a significant reduction in the possibility of getting affected with the disease, says Express.co.uk.80 per cent of the breast cancer cases take place after menopause, says the charity Breast Cancer now. They also explained that women could considerably lower their breast cancer risk with a healthy lifestyle.Rowan Chlebowski, the research professor in the Department of Medical Oncology and Therapeutics Research, City of Hope in Duarte in Canada, while talking about this research, said,
“Breast cancer is among the leading types of cancer and causes of death in American women. Obesity rates have been increasing in the United States. We wanted to determine if there was a link between obesity and breast cancer risk.”
Data was analyzed from over 60000 women and it was discovered that 3000 of them developed invasive breast cancer in the upcoming 11-12 years. Data from the Women’s Health Initiative (WHI) Observational Study was analyzed to track post menopausal women aged 50-79.
Participants with a normal mammogram with no prior breast cancer, who were not underweight and were checked for weight and height at the start and after three years. It was found at the beginning that 41% of the women weighed normal, 34% were overweight and 25% were obese.
When compared with women who had a stable weight, it was found that those who showed a 5% reduction or higher decrease in weight were 12% less likely to develop breast cancer.
Chief executive of Breast Cancer Now, Baroness Delyth Morgan stated, “This important study provides further, clear evidence that postmenopausal women can significantly reduce their risk of breast cancer by taking steps to lose weight. Being overweight after the menopause does increase your risk of the disease, likely because fat tissue becomes a women’s main source of oestrogen after the menopause.”
“With breast cancer incidence continuing to rise, we need to do much more to enable women and men of all ages to reduce their risk. It’s so important to remember that we can all reduce our breast cancer risk through various lifestyle factors, including keeping physically active, maintaining a healthy weight throughout life and lowering our alcohol intake,” she concluded.