Cancer death rates have dropped in the past two decades in the US. However, the outstanding results might face retrogression as obesity hits in. Experts are concerned that the cancer death rates might spike up again due to obesity affecting more and more US citizens.
According to the annual American Cancer Society report that foresees 2001 through 2018, lung and melanoma cancer death rates have decreased. Prostate cancer death rates also look better than in previous years. Thanks to the medical efforts to help people give up smoking, lung cancer affects fewer people, the report shows.
“The decrease in smoking is a huge reason. Keep in mind it is not just lung cancer, but smoking causes 18 different cancers,” said Dr. Otis Brawley, a professor at Johns Hopkins University and former chief medical officer at the American Cancer Society.
Cancer death rates in the US continue to drop, but the reports show more significant lung and melanoma cancer results. However, other significant types of cancer rates either grow or stay the same. Besides the cancer types, the report takes into account the sex, age group, and racial/ethnic group in the US. The results are based on the death certificates reported to states and the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s National Center for Health Statistics.
It seems like females, children, adolescents, and young adults are more affected by this disease. Cancer death rates for men dropped 2.3% per year from 2015 to 2018, while for women, it dropped by 2.1% for the same period.
Cigarette and Tabasco vs Obesity
According to Brawley, obesity might become the leading cause of cancer disease.
“Think about tobacco control pushing the rate down and energy imbalance pushing the rate up at the same time. And by the way, the cancers that are going up or the cancers that are not going down in death rate in this study are the ones most closely associated with energy imbalance,” he continues.