Journal Article

Association of Obesity and Cancer Risk in Canada

Sai Yi Pan, Kenneth C. Johnson, Anne-Marie Ugnat, Shi Wu Wen and Yang Mao

in American Journal of Epidemiology

Published on behalf of Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health

Volume 159, issue 3, pages 259-268
Published in print February 2004 | ISSN: 0002-9262
Published online February 2004 | e-ISSN: 1476-6256 | DOI:
Association of Obesity and Cancer Risk in Canada

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The authors conducted a population-based, case-control study of 21,022 incident cases of 19 types of cancer and 5,039 controls aged 20–76 years during 1994–1997 to examine the association between obesity and the risks of various cancers. Compared with people with a body mass index of less than 25 kg/m2, obese (body mass index of ≥30 kg/m2) men and women had an increased risk of overall cancer (multivariable adjusted odds ratio = 1.34, 95% confidence interval (CI): 1.22, 1.48), non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma (odds ratio = 1.46, 95% CI: 1.24, 1.72), leukemia (odds ratio = 1.61, 95% CI: 1.32, 1.96), multiple myeloma (odds ratio = 2.06, 95% CI: 1.46, 2.89), and cancers of the kidney (odds ratio = 2.74, 95% CI: 2.30, 3.25), colon (odds ratio = 1.93, 95% CI: 1.61, 2.31), rectum (odds ratio = 1.65, 95% CI: 1.36, 2.00), pancreas (odds ratio = 1.51, 95% CI: 1.19, 1.92), breast (in postmenopausal women) (odds ratio = 1.66, 95% CI: 1.33, 2.06), ovary (odds ratio = 1.95, 95% CI: 1.44, 2.64), and prostate (odds ratio = 1.27, 95% CI: 1.09, 1.47). Overall, excess body mass accounted for 7.7% of all cancers in Canada—9.7% in men and 5.9% in women. This study provides further evidence that obesity increases the risk of overall cancer, non-Hodgkin’s lymphoma, leukemia, multiple myeloma, and cancers of the kidney, colon, rectum, breast (in postmenopausal women), pancreas, ovary, and prostate.

Keywords: body mass index; case-control studies; neoplasms; obesity; Abbreviations: CI, confidence interval; IGF, insulin-like growth factor; NECSS, National Enhanced Cancer Surveillance System.

Journal Article.  7406 words. 

Subjects: Public Health and Epidemiology

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