Men with the largest waist sizes in a study of 120,000 adults had a 63 percent greater risk of developing cancer than small-waisted men
Older men and women who are thick around the middle may have an increased risk of developing colon cancer.
A study in the Netherlands followed over 120,000 Dutch adults between the ages of 55 and 69 who reported their height, weight, their pants or skirt size, and their weight at age 20 to researchers. Over the next 16 years, about two percent of the study participants developed colorectal cancer, and the risk was 25 percent greater for men who were overweight or obese at the beginning of the study.
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Men with the largest waist sizes had a 63 percent greater risk of developing cancer than men with the smallest waist measurements.
In women, the findings were different. Abdominal fat was associated with colorectal cancer only when combined with low levels of exercise, defined as less than 30 minutes a day. Women who wore greater than a size 16 in pants (greater than 44" waist) and got little exercise were 83 percent more likely to develop colon cancer than women in the high physical activity group who had smaller waist measurements.