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UNITING THE WORLD OF FITNESS
Health Club Management

Health Club Management

features

Editor's letter: Obesity and cancer

Obesity has overtaken smoking as the leading cause of some common cancers, meaning the health and fitness industry must step up and join the fight, with a new push on prevention and plans to train staff to equip them to offer support

By Liz Terry, Leisure Media | Published in Health Club Management 2019 issue 7
Obese people now outnumber smokers two to one / PHOTO: SHUTTERSTOCK/SEVENTYFOUR
Obese people now outnumber smokers two to one / PHOTO: SHUTTERSTOCK/SEVENTYFOUR
Being qualified to deliver obesity reduction and oncology exercise must become standard training for all exercise professionals

The health and fitness industry has the opportunity to take meaningful action in the battle against cancer, with the news that obesity has overtaken smoking for the first time as the leading cause of some of the most common cancers, including bowel, kidney, ovarian and liver,

A new study from leading charity Cancer Research UK (CRUK) has found that being obese plays a significant role in the development of 13 different types of cancer.

It does this by causing inflammation in the body which stops it responding to insulin. More insulin is then produced to compensate and this triggers an increase in cell production which can eventually lead to cancer.

Higher levels of insulin also mean more estrogen is circulating in the body, because fat cells can make estrogen in both men and women. This also raises cancer risk, as higher estrogen levels can lead to increased cell production.

The challenge we face in tackling this epidemic is even greater because of the sheer numbers involved – obese people now outnumber smokers by two to one, so just as one cancer-causing behaviour – smoking – is coming under control as a result of decades of effective public health interventions, so an even bigger problem is emerging in the form of obesity.

Michelle Mitchell, CRUK’s chief executive, said the problem is only getting worse as we hit a record high for childhood obesity: “As smoking rates fall and obesity rates rise,” she said, “We can clearly see the impact on the national health crisis.”

The government’s smoking cessation programme, which has waged war on the evil weed for decades, is a powerful example of how to change behaviour and illustrates just how long it takes and how dogged we need to be to make an impact.

As I write, the Conservative Party leadership contest is nearing fever pitch, and Boris Johnson has just announced that he would remove ‘sin taxes’ on things like alcohol and cigarettes. It’s also widely believed that he would not support the sport and activity markets were he to become prime minister.

Such breathtakingly irresponsible statements show how fragile the situation is and how – even now, when we think we’ve got some momentum behind what we do – it’s necessary to fight ever harder to make a case for our work. Clearly, we have a way to go before we have everyone on-side and the role of exercise in health is really recognised.

We can fight the cancer epidemic on two fronts: firstly by helping people reverse obesity and secondly by making sure staff are trained to enable people with cancer to exercise safely.

To this end, we can take inspiration from the work of Wellness for Cancer, the organisation dedicated to training spa therapists to deliver treatments to people living with cancer.

Being qualified to deliver both obesity reduction and oncology exercise must become a standard part of training to be an exercise professional, so the benefits of exercise are available to all. This is especially vital given we know exercise can also improve quality of life for many cancer sufferers.

Sign up here to get HCM's weekly ezine and every issue of HCM magazine free on digital.
https://www.leisureopportunities.co.uk/images/imagesX/46900_440254.jpg
Obesity has overtaken smoking as the leading cause of some cancers. The health and fitness must step up and join the fight, with a new push on prevention, says HCM editor Liz Terry in this month's issue...
Liz Terry, editor,Obesity, cancer, smoking,
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features

Editor's letter: Obesity and cancer

Obesity has overtaken smoking as the leading cause of some common cancers, meaning the health and fitness industry must step up and join the fight, with a new push on prevention and plans to train staff to equip them to offer support

By Liz Terry, Leisure Media | Published in Health Club Management 2019 issue 7
Obese people now outnumber smokers two to one / PHOTO: SHUTTERSTOCK/SEVENTYFOUR
Obese people now outnumber smokers two to one / PHOTO: SHUTTERSTOCK/SEVENTYFOUR
Being qualified to deliver obesity reduction and oncology exercise must become standard training for all exercise professionals

The health and fitness industry has the opportunity to take meaningful action in the battle against cancer, with the news that obesity has overtaken smoking for the first time as the leading cause of some of the most common cancers, including bowel, kidney, ovarian and liver,

A new study from leading charity Cancer Research UK (CRUK) has found that being obese plays a significant role in the development of 13 different types of cancer.

It does this by causing inflammation in the body which stops it responding to insulin. More insulin is then produced to compensate and this triggers an increase in cell production which can eventually lead to cancer.

Higher levels of insulin also mean more estrogen is circulating in the body, because fat cells can make estrogen in both men and women. This also raises cancer risk, as higher estrogen levels can lead to increased cell production.

The challenge we face in tackling this epidemic is even greater because of the sheer numbers involved – obese people now outnumber smokers by two to one, so just as one cancer-causing behaviour – smoking – is coming under control as a result of decades of effective public health interventions, so an even bigger problem is emerging in the form of obesity.

Michelle Mitchell, CRUK’s chief executive, said the problem is only getting worse as we hit a record high for childhood obesity: “As smoking rates fall and obesity rates rise,” she said, “We can clearly see the impact on the national health crisis.”

The government’s smoking cessation programme, which has waged war on the evil weed for decades, is a powerful example of how to change behaviour and illustrates just how long it takes and how dogged we need to be to make an impact.

As I write, the Conservative Party leadership contest is nearing fever pitch, and Boris Johnson has just announced that he would remove ‘sin taxes’ on things like alcohol and cigarettes. It’s also widely believed that he would not support the sport and activity markets were he to become prime minister.

Such breathtakingly irresponsible statements show how fragile the situation is and how – even now, when we think we’ve got some momentum behind what we do – it’s necessary to fight ever harder to make a case for our work. Clearly, we have a way to go before we have everyone on-side and the role of exercise in health is really recognised.

We can fight the cancer epidemic on two fronts: firstly by helping people reverse obesity and secondly by making sure staff are trained to enable people with cancer to exercise safely.

To this end, we can take inspiration from the work of Wellness for Cancer, the organisation dedicated to training spa therapists to deliver treatments to people living with cancer.

Being qualified to deliver both obesity reduction and oncology exercise must become a standard part of training to be an exercise professional, so the benefits of exercise are available to all. This is especially vital given we know exercise can also improve quality of life for many cancer sufferers.

Sign up here to get HCM's weekly ezine and every issue of HCM magazine free on digital.
https://www.leisureopportunities.co.uk/images/imagesX/46900_440254.jpg
Obesity has overtaken smoking as the leading cause of some cancers. The health and fitness must step up and join the fight, with a new push on prevention, says HCM editor Liz Terry in this month's issue...
Liz Terry, editor,Obesity, cancer, smoking,
Latest News
Sport England has vowed to tackle inequality and create a nation of "more equal, inclusive ...
Latest News
Fitness instructors, personal trainers, coaches and other self-employed physical activity workers in Wales are being ...
Latest News
Sign the petition by clicking here. HCM editor, Liz Terry, has launched a Parliamentary Petition ...
Latest News
The failure to tackle the UK's obesity crisis is down to successive governments being guilty ...
Latest News
Les Mills has launched a new digital content solution to support health and fitness operators ...
Latest News
Gymbox has entered the hospitality space with the signing of a deal to deliver in-room ...
Latest News
Nuffield Health has launched a series of free, online classes focused on emotional wellbeing. The ...
Latest News
Resistance training is just as beneficial for men and women over the age of 50, ...
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A national survey has launched to chart the mental health of the fitness and physical ...
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Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: Red Light Rising teams up with ITRM Clinic to supply red light therapy for injured athletes
Red light therapy equipment supplier, Red Light Rising, has partnered with Aidan Robinson of ITRM Clinic in the UK
Featured supplier news
Featured supplier: AskNicely helps empower businesses to improve customer experience and boost NPS
Maintaining a consistent member experience across a growing health and fitness brand can prove challenging.
Company profiles
Company profile: Life Fitness
Through our Life Fitness Solutions Partners, we can deliver design and build services, finance solutions, ...
Company profiles
Company profile: Les Mills UK
Committed to creating a fitter planet, Les Mills UK works with clubs and instructors to ...
Supplier Showcases
Supplier showcase - Egym: Game changer
Catalogue Gallery
Click on a catalogue to view it online
Directory
Fitness Software
FunXtion International BV: Fitness Software
Independent service & maintenance
Servicesport UK Limited: Independent service & maintenance
Wearable technology solutions
MyZone: Wearable technology solutions
Whole body cryotherapy
Art of Cryo: Whole body cryotherapy
Skincare
Comfort Zone - Davines S.p.A: Skincare
Flooring
REGUPOL/Berleburger Schaumstoffwerk (BSW): Flooring
Hydrotherapy / spa fragrances
Kemitron GmbH: Hydrotherapy / spa fragrances
Spa software
SpaBooker: Spa software
Uniforms
Service Sport: Uniforms
Lockers/interior design
Crown Sports Lockers: Lockers/interior design
Property & Tenders
11 - 25 Union St, London SE1 1SD
Bankside Open Spaces Trust
Property & Tenders
Waltham Abbey, Essex
Lee Valley Regional Park Authority
Property & Tenders
Diary dates
02-04 Feb 2021
Ericsson Exhibition Hall, Ricoh Arena, Coventry, United Kingdom
Diary dates
23-26 Feb 2021
IFEMA, Madrid, Spain
Diary dates
03-04 Mar 2021
NEC, Birmingham, United Kingdom
Diary dates
03-06 Jun 2021
Expo Centre & Riviera di Rimini, Italy
Diary dates
16-17 Jun 2021
ExCeL London, London, United Kingdom
Diary dates
21-24 Sep 2021
Messe Stuttgart, Germany
Diary dates
01-07 Dec 2022
tbc, Dunedin, New Zealand
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