In the female population that has reached menopause, there is a much higher than expected incidence of endometrial cancer, as recent studies have shown. Publications of the ” Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention ” claim that the consumption of sugary drinks increases the risk of endometrial cancer in postmenopausal women.
Among the types of endometrial cancer, there are two clearly differentiated in terms of their dependence or not on estrogen (hormones that produce the ovaries): type I depends on is the one that is affected by the intake of sugary drinks.
The researchers considered the existence of some type of factor that increases the number of this type of malignant tumors in such a high way, in postmenopausal women, and after studying the effect of different agents they reached the following conclusion:
- The greater consumption of sugary drinks has directly affected the female population that has gone through menopause with an increase of up to 78% over the population that did not consume these products.
This association is dependent on the dose, that is, the more sugary drinks are taken, the greater the risk of developing a carcinoma of this type . In addition, it is important to know that this relationship between sugary drinks and cancer occurs only with the type of estrogen-dependent cancer, not with the other type, type II, estrogen-independent.
How can the greater amounts of sugary drinks consumed in the increased risk of endometrial cancer type I affect ?:
The most obvious in principle is that when we consume sugar in the drink fatty tissue produces increased amounts of estrogen , which are directly related to the appearance of endometrial cancers, cancers of breast and others. So there is a sugar-cancer association quite strong.
In women who already live in menopause, whose metabolism has changed, the relationship is more potent. It is a stage in life when hormonal changes produce a change in the female hormonal cycle, that causes a different distribution of fats in the body of the woman, moving to concentrate more in the abdominal area . So when we ingest sugars that cause an increase in obesity in this vital moment, this leads to adverse metabolic changes that lead to the appearance of malignant tumors of various types.
In fact, women who suffer from obesity or excess weight have a 2 to 4 times higher risk of endometrial cancer than women who have a weight appropriate to their constitution and age, regardless of the time of menopause in which find
Refreshments and sweets, under the microscope of the researchers
In order to arrive at the affirmations of this article not only sugary drinks were studied . There was an intense evaluation of the diet through a questionnaire of food frequency. The study subjects had to report on the frequency with which they consumed 127 types of food during the year prior to the investigation.
In the questionnaire, there was a difference between the consumption of sugary drinks according to whether they were cola or cola without caffeine, other carbonated drinks with sugar, juices of non-carbonated fruits and lemonades. We also consulted about non-sugary soft drinks, specifically asked about the consumption of low-caffeinated beverages, cola drinks without caffeine and other low-carb carbonated beverages.
The study also included the category of cakes and desserts, divided into 13 different types, including chocolate, sweets without chocolate, homemade cookies and industrial, brownies, candy bars, donuts, pancakes (homemade and precooked), sweet rolls, cupcakes or other pastas (homemade and prepared) and cakes (homemade and industrial).
It is very interesting to know that no relationship was found between both types of endometrial cancers and the consumption of sugar-free beverages, soft drinks, sweets / baked goods and starch.
However, the researchers demonstrated the intimate association between the intake of sugar-sweetened beverages and the obesity epidemic . They also came to the general conclusion that this excess of sugar (and calories consequently) could increase the risk of health problems such as obesity,
What mechanisms explain the relationship between obesity and cancer?
In general, there are several possible ways by which our body can be prone to different cancers due to problems derived from obesity.
- We have already commented that fatty tissue produces increased amounts of estrogen. This increased production of these hormones is directly related to the appearance of endometrial, breast and other cancers.
- More often people who are overweight have than those who are not obese. Several studies have confirmed the statistical relationship between hyperinsulinemia and a higher probability of suffering from certain tumors .
- The cells of our fatty tissue are called fat cells. The production of certain hormones (
- Obesity chronically produces a state of inflammation of moderate degree . This is, that our body “translates” around the fat cells as if it had an inflammation and acts accordingly trying to “cure” that inflammation by sending certain products to that area. All this is related to an increased risk of cancer.
- An obese person has an altered and their cells are subject to excessive attacks by their own metabolism . In a very summarized way, this is one of the mechanisms that intervene in the development of endometrial cancer type I.
In summary, we can recall that in the specific group of postmenopausal women, the different functioning of the metabolism that causes fat to accumulate in places where it used to not accumulate (the , causes a whole series of mechanisms to be promoted, as we have mentioned, that they most often degenerate into endometrial cancer
Drinks sweetened with sugar have become a constant or very frequent element of our table. But for our health in general, and for the fight against endometrial cancer in particular, it is good that this changes radically and we consider vital the control of the consumption of these sugary drinks.