Link between cancer, diabetes and cardiovascular disease linked to obesity and nutrition.

nutritionThe University of Colorado Cancer Center presented a study at the American Association for Cancer (AACR) revealing a link between cancer, diabetes and .

“We tend to silo ourselves in our , but there are a number of factors shared in these three diseases,” said Tim Byers, the CU Cancer Center’s for .

The direct link was correlated to obesity which is a major cancer factor, likely causing about 20 percent of cancers of the breast, esophagus, colon, kidney, endometrium, pancreas, and gall bladder in the United States. Overweight and obesity contribute to diabetes and , causing 58 percent of type 2 diabetes and 21 percent of heart disease (according to the World Heart Federation). Other factors include tobacco, , physical activity and alcohol use.

“Obesity leads to a chronic inflammatory state and circulating growth factors that have adverse effects on the heart, and can also contribute to the development of cancer. But we tend to study these things in isolation, by disease and not by factor. The intention of this symposium is to plant a seed of thought that maybe, as , we should pay more attention to the subtleties of the epidemiology of other diseases,” said Byers.

“I was recently talking to a epidemiologist about cytokines – small proteins that can make inflammation and are jacked up in obesity,” said Byers. “It turns out that in cancer we had focused on one kind of cytokine and in , they had focused on another. There was no good reason for the difference – it’s just what was in the literature.”

“Understanding the similarities and differences in how these factors create cancer, diabetes and could aid the ways we prevent all three diseases,” said Byers.


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