New AICR/WCRF Report: Obesity Increases Ovarian Cancer Risk

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A new report we’ve released today suggests that staying a healthy weight may offer women a relatively modest — but significant — protection against ovarian cancer, one of the most deadly cancers for women.

The findings of AICR/WCRF’s latest Continuous Update Project report, Food, Nutrition, Physical Activity and the Prevention of Ovarian Cancer, means that ovarian cancer now joins the list of cancers linked to obesity. Research now shows that excess body fat links to increased risk of  eight cancers, including postmenopausal breast, colorectal and pancreatic.

For the report, scientists analyzed all relevant studies that investigated ovarian cancer’s link to diet, physical activity and weight. There were 25 studies related to weight, including four million women.

The report concluded that every five increments of BMI increased women’s risk 6 percent. That risk started on the high end of overweight, towards the obesity category, which starts at a BMI of 30. That means for two women both 5 feet 5 inches tall with all other factors equal, the woman weighing 200 pounds would be at 6 percent higher risk of developing ovarian cancer than her counterpart at 170 pounds. Continue reading


In Memoriam: Dr. John Milner

All of us at the American Institute for Cancer Research are grieving the loss of our dear friend and colleague Dr. John Milner, who passed away suddenly on New Year’s Eve.

Dr. Milner was a tireless, eloquent and impassioned champion of research into nutrition’s role in cancer risk. We will rememberNo Slide Title him as a true leader whose combination of dedication, intellect and personal charm brought experts from many different fields together. His warm and garrulous presence, and his sage advice, will be greatly missed.

Dr. Milner was a longtime friend to AICR, serving for many years as a member of our grant review panel and our research conference planning committee.

During his time as chief of the National Cancer Institute’s Nutrition Science Research Group, where he helped shape the nation’s scientific inquiry into diet and cancer prevention, he served as the NCI observer for the Expert Panel that authored the AICR/WCRF report, Food, Nutrition, Physical Activity and the Prevention of Cancer: A Global Perspective.

His involvement in the field of nutrition dates back to his student days at Oklahoma State University, when a work-study job in a research laboratory triggered a lifelong interest in fighting disease. After earning his PhD from Cornell University, Milner was recruited for the faculty of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign, where he met Mary Frances Picciano, PhD, who would later become his wife. Continue reading


What I Learned at the AICR Annual Research Conference

Attending AICR’s Annual Research Conference is a little like standing under a waterfall—it’s hard to drink it all in. That’s because the Conference brings together some of the world’s leading researchers in cancer prevention, treatment, and bigstock-Gmo-Food-11014355survivorship, and provides them the opportunity to share their research, passion, and experiences, all in one place.

What did I learn from the conference? A lot. But if I were to sum it up in a short list, I would include these three takeaway messages:

1. Preparation matters. How I prepare my food is more important than I thought. Gently steaming broccoli and other crucifers; chopping or blending carotenoid-containing fruits and vegetables; and slow-cooking meat can make a difference in reducing my cancer risk.

This article from Health has more information about the research presented on the role of food preparation techniques in reducing cancer risk. Continue reading