Weight gain and breast cancer complications

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26th Mar 2019 17:37 (UTC)

A finding by the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, may show in clearer detail why there is an increased risk in breast cancer for obese women after menopause. While it is considered to be the case that obesity leads to an increase in estrogen-receptor positive breast cancer this journal published a more specific explanation at how free fatty acids in the bloodstream are likely to increase tumours and how postmenopausal obese women are at great risk from these fatty acids.

Using data and samples from the Susan G. Komen Tissue Bank, it was found in the studies of those who had breast cancer and those which were obese had significantly higher concentrations in their blood, of five free fatty acids and glycerol.

The glycerol and fatty acids are released when triglycerides are broken down by fat tissues and in essence can end up mutating or rewriting cells in the body which increases the risk in a cell developing cancer.

"Our clinical data provide a more complete understanding of the mechanisms that connect obesity with breast cancer, and provide an opportunity to assess the ability of pathway-preferential estrogens to decrease breast cancer risk in obese postmenopausal women" - Madak-Erdogan director of the Womens Health, Hormones and Nutrition Lab and Study Lead.

Madak-Erdogan found that obese women's levels of free fatty acids were significantly higher; however, blood levels of all the fatty acids fell significantly in women who were obese at the beginning of the study and later lost a significant amount of weight.

The studies show that losing weight is still the healthiest option and reducing your weight through portion controlled diet and reasonable exercise can lead to a healthier, longer life.

Publications in Cancer Research http://cancerres.aacrjournals.org/content/early/2019/03/12/0008-5472.CAN-18-2849
Announcements by Illinois University https://news.illinois.edu/view/6367/761835

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