A new study carries a stark warning for millennials: They face a growing risk of cancers related to obesity.
Kidney cancer rates in people in their twenties are rising by 6 per cent a year, according to researchers who suggested that extra fat during key stages of youth could lead to deadly diseases.
The study found there were steep rises in the number of people in younger generations suffering from the cancers.
The rates of new cancer cases and cancer deaths have fallen in the US over the past few decades. As Live Science points out, older people still get such cancers in significantly higher numbers, but researchers were troubled by a notable increase in cases among those ages 25 to 34. The fastest rises were...
Those are multiple myeloma, colorectal, uterine corpus, gall bladder, kidney and pancreatic cancers.
Pancreatic cancer cases rose by 4.34 per cent a year among 25 to 29-year-olds over the last two decades.
Obesity is now one of the most preventable causes of cancer, responsible for around one in 20 cases in the United Kingdom and one in 12 in the US.
Healthcare providers should be vigilant about screening for and helping patients try to prevent obesity, since the consequences of climbing cancer rates could threaten decades of public health progress, the authors say.
The younger the age group, the greater the size of the increase in all seven of the cancer types except for thyroid cancer.
The obesity epidemic which has exploded in the past 40 years means that more people are at risk of certain kinds of cancer.
'Younger generations are experiencing earlier and longer-lasting exposure to excess fat and to obesity-related health conditions that can increase cancer risk'.
"The future burden of these cancers might be exacerbated as younger cohorts age, potentially halting or reversing the progress achieved in reducing cancer mortality over the past several decades", the authors write.
It's not possible to definitively attribute the recent cancer increases to obesity - but the new report notes that the upticks in cancer for young people coincided with a doubling in rates of childhood and adolescent obesity between 1980 and 2014, making weight a likely contributor.
Experts said more research is needed to explore what is causing the rising rates because this study does not prove obesity is the only reason.