Credit: Photo Wikipedia
I weighed myself this morning. Horror of horrors, I have put on six kilos since I last did so in November.
It is not surprising really. As an 80-year-old I have been ‘shielding’ over the past twelve months of government lockdowns.
An enforced lack of exercise, my overindulgence in the delectable Christmas treats served up by my dear wife, and a preference for winter comfort foods have taken its flabby toll.
I gather that I am not alone in this weight gain. Have you weighed yourself recently?
Taking regular exercise will become increasingly important in helping us to prevent cancers as we emerge from lockdown
Being overweight or obese leaves us vulnerable to a variety of different cancers.
While smoking is still the main cause of cancer in the UK and elsewhere, obesity is catching up fast.
Scientists fear that in the not-too-distant future obesity will have overtaken smoking as the leading cause of preventable cancer, including breast and bowel cancers.
They estimate that by 2030 approximately 40% of the world’s population will be overweight and another 20% will be obese.
Most worrying is the staggeringly extensive list of associated death risks from obesity. It includes no less than 13 different types of cancer, as well as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, stroke, hypertension and osteoarthritis, combined with accelerated ageing and dementia.
This is all related to the new concept of “inflammageing”; the process by which excess food intake induces obesity which promotes chronic inflammation, which reinforces the whole process and leads to increases in all of the above diseases.
Research shows that physical exercise together with improved diet not only combats obesity. It also improves all
of the above and improves the chances of cancer not returning for those who have been treated for primary cancer tumours.
So let’s get out in the Spring sunshine that Carol Kirkwood promises us on BBC Weather News! Get digging and pruning in the garden that Monty Don tells us needs doing now in his Garden World programme! Give the pooch, (and you), a proper run in the park!
Enjoy the blossoming trees as you exercise, as poet A.E.Housman did as he wandered:
Loveliest of trees, the cherry now
Is hung with bloom along the bough,
And stands about the woodland ride
Wearing white for Eastertidei
National Library of Medicine
Inflammmageing. Chronic inflammation in aging.