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Obesity and Thyroid Cancer: Understanding the Connection

By Fernando Garcia on January 15, 2018

Morbid obesity before and afterThe thyroid gland is located in the front of the neck below the Adam’s apple. This butterfly-shaped gland secretes various hormones responsible for regulating metabolism and protein synthesis. Research has found that people who are significantly overweight or obese have a higher risk of developing thyroid cancer than people of normal weight.

The team at Tijuana Bariatrics has often said that obesity treatment can help promote general wellness. This includes lowering the risk of certain cancers. The team at our Tijuana, MX weight loss surgery center would like to go over the potential link between obesity and thyroid cancer.

Types of Thyroid Cancers

A number of growths may affect the thyroid gland, many of which are benign and non-cancerous. The most common types of malignant thyroid tumors are as follows:

  • Differentiated (the majority of thyroid cancers)
  • Medullary (4 percent of thyroid cancers)
  • Anaplastic (2 percent of thyroid cancers)

Less common kinds of thyroid cancers (thyroid lymphomas, thyroid sarcomas, and other rare kinds of growths) make up about 4 percent of all thyroid cancers.

The Link Between Obesity and Thyroid Cancer

There are many risk factors for developing thyroid cancer, but obesity is one of the most serious of them. In terms of numbers, thyroid cancer has been one of the fastest growing kinds of cancers in America. This increase in the rates of thyroid cancer has taken place over the last three decades, which correlates with increased rates of obesity.

A study published in Obesity Reviews analyzed body mass index (BMI) in various individuals. The study found that overweight individuals had a higher risk of thyroid cancer than people of normal weight. People who were obese had an even higher risk of thyroid cancer than people who were just overweight.

Preventing Thyroid Cancer Through Weight Loss

The big takeaway from all of this is that maintaining a normal weight is better for your overall health and wellness. This is why many people try to eat healthier, exercise more, and undergo bariatric surgery.

Can Bariatric Surgery Help Prevent Thyroid Cancer?

Yes, potentially. Bariatric surgery can help people lose weight quickly an safely when diet and exercise alone have proven ineffective.

For people who are obese or morbidly obese and suffer from an obesity-related health problem (e.g., diabetes, hypertension), weight loss surgery can promote weight loss and help reduce the severity of the comorbidity. This means better health and wellness thanks to surgical weight loss.

How Effective Is Bariatric Surgery?

Bariatric surgery has made a major difference in many people’s lives. Thanks to bariatric surgery, patients can lose a significant percentage of their excess body weight. The lasting lifestyle changes brought about by weight loss surgery help promote long-term weight loss and better, healthier living.

If you have a high risk of thyroid cancer or other health problems related to obesity, bariatric surgery is a smart option to consider. We would be more than happy to discuss your many surgical weight loss options with you in greater detail.

Contact Tijuana Bariatrics

For more information about bariatric surgery and how it can help prevent and address various health issues, be sure to contact an experienced weight loss surgery specialist. The team at Tijuana Bariatrics can help you achieve better health and wellness.

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Dr. Garcia is awesome. I chose bariatrics vertical sleeve surgery. I've lost 85 lbs. since January 2017. No complications... I regret not doing this years ago. Debbie M.

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