The Official Newsletter of Bodyfatguide.com
updated November 1, 2007

 

Body Fatness Causes Cancer

by Ron Brown, author of The Body Fat Guide 

"Ron Brown is a certified fitness trainer who doesn't have an inch of flab on his body. He'll tell you what you can do to become fit and trim too." 
TALK TO AMERICA,
Washington DC

 


WHAT IS BEING CALLED a landmark scientific study confirms that a greater body fat level, or body fatness as the researchers call it, is a cause of at least six specific types of cancers: oesophagus, pancreas, colorectum, breast (postmenopause), endometrium (uterus) and kidney cancers. In their 2007 report, Food, Nutrition, Physical Activity and the Prevention of Cancer: A Global Perspective, researchers from the American Institute for Cancer Research and the World Cancer Research Fund present convincing evidence to support their findings after taking five years to rigorously review 7,000 research studies selected from over a quarter of a million studies published since the 1960s.

To prevent cancer, the researchers make several recommendations, many of which are already familiar to readers of Bodyfatguide.com. For example, the authors of the study recommend that people eat unprocessed foods mostly of plant origin, aim to meet nutritional needs through diet alone (without supplements), limit consumption of salt, and get 30-60 minutes of moderate to vigorous daily physical activity. However, the number one recommendation in the study is: "Be as lean as possible in the normal range of bodyweight."

The researchers conclude that maintenance of normal bodyweight throughout life may be one of the most important ways to protect against cancer. Experts such as Dr. Walter Willett of the Harvard School of Public Health warn that rising rates of obesity will eventually surpass cigarette smoking as the number one cause of cancer! The researchers particularly stress maintaining leanness and avoiding an increase in waist size in adulthood. But how do you measure leanness within a normal range of bodyweight? 

The researchers mention the use of Body Mass Index standards to monitor normal weight. However, BMI alone is not adequate to monitor your leanness. BMI only evaluates bodyweight according to height (kilograms of bodyweight/height in meters squared). Leanness is best monitored according to your percentage body fat. For example, a muscular person's bodyweight may appear too heavy by BMI standards, yet, this person may have a healthy low level of body fat, thus reducing their cancer risk. Conversely, a person may be considered within a healthy bodyweight according to BMI, but have an unhealthy, flabby body with a high level of body fat, thereby increasing their cancer risk. Without taking body fat percentages into consideration, BMI targets alone for bodyweight and leanness are either ineffective or are not attainable for most people.

To achieve the type of healthy leanness recommended by this landmark study, while simultaneously maintaining a healthy adult waist size which is also recommended by the researchers, you will need an easy method to monitor and modify your body fat percentage and your energy balance, which is the balance between the calories you eat and burn. Such a method is available in The Body Fat Guide.

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