Cancer preventability estimates for body fatness

Updated estimates of preventability (PAF%) of cancers of which body fatness is a cause by appropriate body composition, in four countries.

Cancer USA UK BRAZIL CHINA
  Male Female Male Female Male Female Male Female
Oesophagus (adenocarcinoma) 37 30 35 20 26 14 19 7
Stomach(1) (cardia) 18 27 18 20 13 14 10 8
Pancreas(2) 17 20 14 16 8 13 5 10
Gallbladder(3) 11 28 8 21 3 15 2 10
Liver(4) 27 28 22 19 11 13 6 7
Colorectum(5) 17 15 15 13 10 11 8 9
Breast(3) (postmenopausal) - 17 - 16 - 14 - 12
Ovary(6) - 5 - 4 - 3 - 1
Endometrium(7) - 50 - 38 - 29 - 17
Prostate(8) (advanced) 11 - 9 - 5 - 4 -
Kidney(3) 20 28 17 21 10 16 6 10
Total for these cancers combined 21 21 16 17 12 14 12 10

(1) CUP - New conclusion; using Linblad et al. Cancer causes and control 2005; 16: 285-294.
(2) CUP - Revised estimate using Genkinger et al. Int J Cancer 2011; 129: 1708-17.
(3) No revisions required based on CUP gallbladder, breast and kidney cancer reports.
(4) CUP - New conclusion; using Calle et al. N Engl J Med 2003; 348: 1625-38.
(5) CUP - Revised estimate using Adams et al. Am J Epidemiol 2007; 166: 36-45.
(6) CUP - New conclusion; using Reeves et al. BMJ 2007; 335: 1134.
(7) CUP - Revised estimate using Park et al. Int J Cancer 2010; 126: 490-9.
(8) CUP - New conclusion; using Rodriguez et al. Cancer Epidemiol Biomarkers Prev 2001; 10: 345-53.

The Continuous Update Project and Second Expert Report identified excess weight as a major independent risk factor for cancer.

A separate analysis was conducted for those cancers where there is strong evidence that excess weight increases cancer risk. The results are shown separately for men and women.

The table shows separate estimates on how much cancer could be prevented by being a healthy weight for men and women. The combined estimates for men and women were 21% for US, 17% for UK, 12% for Brazil and 9% for China.

Using numbers of new cases of cancer diagnosed annually from GLOBOCAN 2012 for both men and women combined this translates to about 117,000 cases of cancer in the USA, about 23,000 for the UK, about 17,000 for Brazil and about 99,000 for China being preventable if everyone had a healthy weight.