The risk of developing prostate cancer is high among men with larger waistlines, says a new study.
Prostate cancer is the most common cancer in men. Researchers from the Oxford University looked at 140,000 men from eight European countries. The findings showed that every extra 4 inches (10cm) of waist circumference could increase the chances of getting cancer by 13%.
‘The waist size for men should not be more than 33 inches (84 cm). Every extra 4 inches on the waistline raises the risk of prostate cancer by 13%.’
The study found that men with a waist bigger than 37 inches (94cm) were at high risk.The study looked at the association between body measurements in men in their 50s and prostate cancer risk over 14 years.
Men with a higher body mass index (BMI) and waist circumference had an increased risk of high-grade prostate cancer, an aggressive form of the disease. Men with a waist size of 37 inches (94cm) had a 13% higher risk of aggressive prostate cancer than men with a waist of 33 inches (84cm).
The risk of dying from prostate cancer increased with high BMI and increased waist circumference. In the 14-year study, 7,000 cases of prostate cancer were identified; 934 were fatal.
Dr Aurora Perez-Cornago from the Nuffield Department of Population Health at the University of Oxford said the study showed that the association between body size and prostate cancer was complex and varied by disease aggressiveness.
Men should maintain a healthy weight and lose weight around their waist. The risk of health problems is higher for men with a waist size of more than 37 inches (94cm) and women more than 31.5 inches (80cm).
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."
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."