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High-Cal Foods May Raise Cancer Risk In Women, Even Without Weight Gain

Women who eat a lot of high-calorie foods may face a slightly higher risk of obesity-related cancers — even if they remain thin. That's according to results released from the University of Arizona on Thursday.

The study of more than 92,000 women says those who favor high-calorie, low-nutrient foods have a 10 percent higher risk of cancers linked to obesity. And it's because of foods like chips, fast food and sweets.

Cancers reported include breast, colon, ovarian, kidney and endometrial cancers. Obesity is considered one of many risk factors for all. There was a catch, though, the study found.

A penchant for high-calorie food was tied to cancer risk only among women who were of normal weight. Researchers called the findings "novel" and somewhat unexpected.

Going into the study, they'd hypothesized that any link between calorie-dense diets and cancer would be strongest among obese women.

But the results suggest that staying trim, alone, is not enough to curb cancer risk. Findings are published in the Journal of the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics.

Heather van Blokland was a host at KJZZ from 2016 to 2021.