Men with larger waistlines now have more to worry than just their weight, as a University of oxford study has found that men with larger waistlines could be at higher risk of developing aggressive prostate cancer.
The study found that men with waists larger than 37 inches were most at risk.
The research study on 140,000 men from eight European countries revealed that a 4-inch larger waist circumference could increase the chances of getting prostate cancer by 13%.
The study was presented at the European Obesity Summit in Gothenburg, Sweden.
BMI and waist circumference linked to prostate cancer
The study looked at the link between body measurements of men in their 50s and prostate cancer risk over 14 years.
The study found that in that duration of time, there were about 7,000 cases of prostate cancer, of which 934 were fatal.
The results of the study showed that men with a higher body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference had an increased risk of aggressive prostate cancer.
The researchers concluded that men with a waist size of 37in (94cm) had a 13% higher risk of aggressive prostate cancer, as compared to men with a waist of 33in (84cm). Also, the risk of dying from prostrate cancer increased with a high BMI and increased waist circumference.
About 47,000 men are diagnosed with prostate cancer every year in the UK and more than 10,800 men die from it every year in the UK.
A spokesman for Prostate Cancer UK said,
“Maintaining a healthy weight and staying active can protect against many diseases, including cancer.
“This research adds to a growing body of evidence that shows that weight and waist size could be another crucial risk factor for men to be aware of when it comes to protecting themselves against prostate cancer.”
Dr Aurora Perez-Cornago from the Nuffield Department of Population Health at the University of Oxford said the study showed that the link between body size and prostate cancer was complex.
Also, the association between body size and prostate cancer varied by the aggressiveness of the disease.
“Men should try to maintain a healthy weight and if possible lose weight around their waist”.
However, she added that the study had not looked at the effect of losing weight on prostate cancer risk.
Thea Cunningham, health information officer at Cancer Research UK, said more research was needed to get a clearer picture of the link.
“It isn’t clear whether excess weight itself is causing men to develop aggressive prostate cancers, or if prostate cancers are less likely to be picked up at an early stage in overweight men, meaning their prostate cancer may be aggressive or advanced by the time it is diagnosed.
“Keeping a healthy weight can help men reduce their risk of several other cancers including bowel cancer.”