Snacking has always been linked
to expanding waistlines, but now it is associated with something far more
Cakes, scones and biscuits have always tickled our taste
buds and have got us to crave for more, but a recent study has given women with
asweet tooth plenty of reasons to
The study has discovered that women who
snacked on sugary items several times a week had 33% greater chance of getting endometrial
cancer (also known as uterine or womb cancer). The chances jumped to 42% if
they indulged more than three times a week.
Endometrial cancer is cancer that affects the
endometrium i.e. the inner lining of the uterus. It is a common gynecologic
cancer and is often diagnosed in women
over the age of 55. Risk factors
include old age, obesity, multiple sex factors, estrogen treatment and late
The findings are based on a 10-year study
by a team at Stockholm's Karolinska Institute which examined the link between
sugary diets and the onset of womb cancer. The subjects included more than
In the year 1987, the female subjects filled
-in questionnaires on their lifestyle, diet, weight and general health. Ten
years later, those women who were still alive were given the same
questionnaire. Basically they were quizzed about their diet- the quantity of
sugar they consumed and about the different types of sugary food items
that they ate.
The researchers observed that there was no
increased risk from consuming soft drinks, jam or marmalade. However, a daily intake of more than 35gm
sugar - about seven teaspoons - could increase a person's risk of getting a
tumor by 36%.
There are explanations! Sugary overload
through a sugary diet makes the body release more insulin which stimulates
excessive growth of cells lining the uterus. It also boosts estrogen levels which triggers uncontrolled growth of cells.
Reporting on their study in 'Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers and
Prevention', the researchers observed, "These data may prove to be of
major public health significance if confirmed by other studies in other
Obesity was always associated with cancer. The
study placed special emphasis on the frequency of eating such food as opposed
to the amount consumed. This study perhaps gives us a better insight into what
we already know though some scientists still feel the need for larger studies
before we can draw any firm conclusion.