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HHS HealthBeat (November 15, 2013)

Weight and pancreatic cancer

From the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services, I’m Ira Dreyfuss with HHS HealthBeat.

Stay obese – or even just overweight – and your risk of pancreatic cancer might go up. Researcher Rachael Stolzenberg-Solomon of the National Institutes of Health saw signs of this in a large study of people ages 50 to 71 who were asked about their weight when they were younger.  She compared people who were normal weight throughout life with people who were overweight or obese:

“We found a small but statistically significant elevated risk for pancreatic cancer for overweight or obesity.”

Being overweight or obese at any age accounted for 14 percent of pancreatic cancers overall.  This is important because two thirds of the American population is overweight or obese.   So it’s another reason to keep weight under control.

The study is in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Learn more at

HHS HealthBeat is a production of the U.S. Department of Health and Human Services. I’m Ira Dreyfuss.

Last revised: November 15, 2013