May 18, 2023 — Young people who gain significant weight between the ages of 17 and 29 appear to have an increased risk of later developing and dying from an aggressive form of prostate cancer, according to a new Swedish study.
The discovery comes from the Swedish Obesity and Disease Development Organization (Prospect) study presented at the European Conference on Obesity 2023 on Tuesday.
The researchers looked at data from 258,477 men with at least three weight measurements between the ages of 17 and 60.
In most cases (83%) the men’s weight was measured objectively, while in 5% it was measured by the individual, and in 15% of cases it was measured based on memory.
Overall, men who gained just over 1 pound per year (1.10 lbs.), compared to those of a stable weight, had a 10% increased risk of developing aggressive prostate cancer later in life, and a 29% increased risk of dying from it. .
Further analysis showed that this was largely due to the significantly increased risk in men who gained weight between the ages of 17 and 29.
A total weight gain over this period of about 29 pounds was associated with a 13% increased risk of prostate cancer and a 27% increased risk of death from the disease.
“We don’t know if weight gain per se or the length of time being heavier is the main driver of the association that we’re seeing,” said lead researcher Marisa Da Silva, from the Department of Translational Medicine at Lund University. in Malmö, Sweden.
“However, weight must be increased in order to become heavier, so preventing severe weight gain in young men is essential for preventing prostate cancer,” she said.
She said other risk factors for prostate cancer — such as advanced age, family history of the disease, and several genetic markers — cannot be changed, so it is “vital” to identify risk factors that can be changed.
In the United States, prostate cancer is The second most common Cancer in men (after melanoma), with more than 288,000 new cases estimated for 2023, causing about 35,000 deaths.
Globally, prostate cancer is the second most common cancer in men (after lung cancer), with more than 1.4 million cases diagnosed worldwide each year.