Studies reveal that slim people can still have a high bowel cancer risk. Abnormal insulin levels put people at a higher risk of developing bowel cancer regardless of whether an individual is overweight or of normal weight. The study, as part of the European Prospective Investigation into Cancer and Nutrition (EPIC), includes 737 participants who developed bowel cancer and the same number who did not.
Abnormal insulin levels puts you at a higher risk of bowel cancer
“Results show for the first time that bowel cancer risk is associated with elevated insulin levels among lean people, as well as those with obesity.” says study scientist Dr Marc Gunter from the International Agency for Research on Cancer in France. “Measuring insulin levels could be used alongside BMI (Body Mass Index) as a new tool for assessing bowel cancer risk to better determine who is at the greatest risk and requires greater monitoring. We don’t know why the lean individuals had raised insulin levels but it could be due to poor diet or sedentary behaviour.”
High insulin levels were still found to be more common in the overweight/obese participants, but the important takeaway from this research is that even those who look healthy on the outside can be at risk of disease. This might sounds obvious to some, but the reality is that not enough people get tested and many people with bowel cancer find out too late, when it is more difficult to treat.
The danger of ‘high risk’ unawareness
Unfortunately, people in this category may have a high bowel cancer risk and most are blissfully unaware of it. They’ll glance at the number on the scale and assume all is well. After all, how can they be at risk when insulin resistance and disease is so commonly linked with being overweight and obese? The concern here is that these people continue on with unhealthy lifestyle habits, and without ever getting tested.
The Bottom Line? Even if you look healthy, it is important to get checked for bowel cancer, especially if you have unhealthy lifestyle habits. Order a convenient and confidential at-home bowel cancer screening kit here for peace of mind.
Lower your risk of bowel cancer and other health problems by working out regularly, getting enough sleep and by eliminating high fat, high salt, processed foods from your diet. Insulin resistance is a common problem and no one is immune. That’s why lifestyle and regular testing is so important. You can’t change the genetics you were born with but you can weaken their influence with healthy lifestyle choices.
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It’s good to know.
Written by Hannah Kingston | Approved by Medical Director Dominic Rowley