Current study: Very thin people have a significantly higher risk of colon cancer

Current study: Very thin people have a significantly higher risk of colon cancer

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Lean people with high insulin levels are at greater risk of colon cancer
In general, obese and obese people have an increased risk of developing various diseases. But even a healthy body weight is no guarantee of flawless health. Researchers found that while thin people look healthy, they can still be at higher risk of colon cancer.

The researchers at the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC) in France found in an investigation that thin people seem healthy but sometimes have a significantly increased risk of developing colorectal cancer. This is related to an increased insulin level. The doctors published the results of their study in the journal "Public Library of Science Medicine".

Blood level measurement can improve diagnosis and treatment of colon cancer
Abnormal insulin levels are associated with an increased risk of developing colorectal cancer, regardless of individual overweight, the authors say. The results suggest that measuring blood levels could help identify the disease. This increases the likelihood of early diagnosis and treatment, the researchers add.

Pay attention to insulin levels to avoid colon cancer
For the first time, these results show that colorectal cancer risk is associated with increased insulin levels in lean people, but also in people with obesity, explains Dr. Marc Gunter from the International Agency for Research on Cancer (IARC)

Unhealthy eating and lack of exercise could be the cause
There are often high insulin levels in overweight people. Lean people are less likely to have elevated insulin levels, the authors explain. “We don't know exactly why thin people can have an elevated insulin level,” the researchers report. Improper nutrition or a lack of exercise could be to blame for the increased insulin level, the scientists suspect.

Insulin levels and BMI help assess colorectal cancer risk
In addition to the so-called BMI (Body Mass Index), measurements of insulin levels could be used as a new tool for assessing the risk of colon cancer. To do this, however, we need stronger monitoring. In general, many of the cases of colorectal cancer could actually be prevented by a healthy lifestyle, the doctors explain. Prevention could be easier if you are a regular coffee drinker. Because researchers have already found in earlier studies that coffee can reduce the risk of colon cancer.

Doctors examine the level of C-Petid
The study was part of the large European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition Investigation (EPIC). The subjects included 737 participants with colorectal cancer and the same number of people without the disease, the researchers explain. The doctors examined the levels of a so-called insulin biomarker, the so-called C-peptide, in the test subjects.

Make sure you have a healthy diet and exercise
The interesting new insights enable us to identify the groups of the population at greatest risk for colorectal cancer, the authors say. In general, it is very important to pay attention to a healthy diet and to exercise regularly. Not only does this help reduce the risk of colorectal cancer, it also protects against a variety of other cancers, the doctors explain. It is also known that oily fish, for example, protects against colon cancer and even inhibits tumor growth.

Author and source information

Video: Colon Cancer Update. Rimma Shaposhnikov, MD, Natalie Manitius, MPH, RDN, UCLA Gastroenterology (August 2022).