A new study warns that both healthy and unhealthy metabolic “forms” of obesity are associated with an increased risk of various types of cancer.

The researchers, led by Lund University in Sweden, studied cases of obesity with metabolic complications, commonly called “unhealthy metabolic obesity,” as well as reports of “healthy” forms of the condition that do not cause metabolic damage to the body.

The findings, which will be presented this week at the European Congress on Obesity in Dublin, highlight that the type of metabolism in obese patients is important when assessing cancer risk.

There are no universally agreed definitions of a metabolically healthy person, but previous studies suggest that in people with this metabolic state, the body is able to respond to food in a beneficial way, which reduces the risk of diseases such as type 2 diabetes. heart disease, and fatty liver disease.

And in some obese people, having a healthy metabolism has been shown to protect them from many of the harmful effects of excess body fat.

In their new study, published in the Journal of the National Cancer Institute, the researchers found that although the metabolically unhealthy obesity is closely linked to cancer, both forms of the elevated body fat condition were associated with an increased risk of various types of cancer.

The researchers analyzed how BMI, along with the metabolic health status of more than 797,000 European individuals, was associated with obesity-related cancer risk.

The researchers developed a metabolic score that includes blood pressure, plasma glucose and triglycerides to identify healthy and unhealthy metabolic status.

The participants were then grouped into 6 categories: metabolically unhealthy obesity, healthy metabolic obesity, metabolically unhealthy overweight, metabolically healthy overweight, metabolically unhealthy normal weight, and metabolically healthy normal weight.

The researchers found that metabolically unhealthy obesity was associated with an increased risk of colorectal, pancreatic, endometrial, liver, gallbladder and kidney cancers, compared to a metabolically healthy normal weight.

According to the researchers, the highest risk estimates were for endometrial cancer and liver and kidney cancer, with a 2.5- to 3-fold increase in risk.

Metabolically unhealthy obese women had a 21 percent increased risk of colon cancer, a three-fold increased risk of endometrial cancer, and a 2.5-fold increased risk of kidney cancer, compared to metabolically healthy women of normal weight.

The researchers said obese women who were metabolically healthy had a 2.4 times higher risk of developing endometrial cancer, and an 80 percent higher risk of developing kidney cancer.

In men, metabolically unhealthy individuals with obesity had a 2.6-fold increased risk of kidney cancer, an 85 percent increased risk of colon cancer, and a 32 percent increased risk of pancreatic and rectal cancer.

The researchers noted that obesity combined with metabolic complications increased men’s risk of developing these obesity-related cancers more than would be expected from the sum of the individual risk factors.

“This has important public health implications, suggesting that a large number of cancer cases could be prevented by targeting the co-existence of metabolic problems and obesity, particularly obesity-related cancers among men,” the team revealed.

They concluded that, “Overall, being metabolically unhealthy increases the risk of obesity-related cancers, suggesting that both obesity and metabolic states are useful targets for prevention of obesity-related cancers.”

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