Obesity now leading cause of four cancers

Cancer Research UK has released new findings showing that carrying excess weight causes more cases of kidney, bowel, ovarian and liver cancer than smoking.

Almost a third of UK adults are obese and these people now outnumber those who smoke two to one. Being overweight or obese is now the leading cause of these four types of cancer, despite the fact that smoking is still the biggest preventable cause of cancer and carries a much higher risk of the disease.

“As smoking rates fall and obesity rates rise, we can clearly see the impact on a national health crisis when the government puts policies in place – and when it puts its head in the sand,” said Michelle Mitchell, Cancer Research UK’s chief executive.

“Our children could be a smoke-free generation, but we’ve hit a devastating record high for childhood obesity, and now we need urgent government intervention to end the epidemic. They still have a chance to save lives.”

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