Can Large Waist Increase The Risk Of Cancer?

An expanding waistline could make you worry in different ways. One of the most dangerous risks of large waist is that it could be a warning sign that an individual is running an increased risk of certain cancers. Continue reading to know more about it.

Can Large Waist Increase The Risk Of Cancer?

Can Large Waist Increase the Risk of Cancer?

As per the scientists at the International Agency For Research On Cancer or IARC, the waist measurement is as good at predicting cancer risk as the Body Mass Index or BMI, which is the ratio of weight to height. According to some studies there is a special link between the large waist and bowel and breast cancers.

As per Dr Heinz Freisling of IARC, the increased risk of certain cancers and also Type 2 diabetes, kicks in at a waist measurement of 40 inches or 102 cm for men and 35 inches or 88 cm for women.

A study conducted by IARC looked at BMI, waist measurement and waist to hip ratio, for finding out how good these were at predicting increased risk of cancers that are linked to obesity. It showed that by adding 11 cm to the waistline increased the risk of obesity-related cancers by about 13%. It was also found that by adding around 8 cm to the hips it increased the risk of bowel cancer by about 15%. This study combined data from about 43,000 participants who had been followed for an average of 12 years; and from this, more than 1600 individuals were diagnosed with an obesity-related cancer.

The findings from the study showed that both Body Mass Index and where body fat is carried on the body can be good indicators of obesity linked cancer risk. Specifically, the fat carried around the waist or a large waist may be important for certain cancers. However, still further investigation is required on this.

It is also known that if you have a large waist, there is a very fair chance that you have insulin resistance. Having high insulin is bad news, as it is a growth promoting hormone. Thus, if there is a tumor present in the body, it will grow faster in an insulin resistant individual.


So, now that we came to know about having heavy body weight and large waist can lead to an increased risk of cancer, you must keep a check on your body weight and fat growth around your waist. It is essential for you to know your BMI and keep a check on your waist size.

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Team PainAssist
Team PainAssist
Written, Edited or Reviewed By: Team PainAssist, Pain Assist Inc. This article does not provide medical advice. See disclaimer
Last Modified On:October 21, 2021

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