Diabetes and Increased Cancer Risk


Did you know that diabetes is linked to some types of cancers? If you have diabetes, ask your doctor about regular cancer screenings.

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DR. RODGERS: Did you know that diabetes is linked to some types of cancers?

Hi, I’m Dr. Griffin Rodgers, director of the National Institute of Diabetes and Digestive and Kidney Diseases at NIH.

My colleague, Dr. Ned Sharpless, director of the National Cancer Institute, explains.

DR. SHARPLESS: Researchers are still working to understand the link between diabetes and cancer, including their shared risk factors. Although some risk factors, like your age and race and ethnicity, can’t be changed, you can modify other factors like your diet and lifestyle to help reduce cancer risk.

If you have diabetes, here are tips to lower your cancer risk:

  • You can eat more whole grains and fruits and veggies and lean meats.
  • You should aim for a healthy weight—losing a small amount of weight even can make a big difference.
  • You should get moving—you should build short bursts of physical activity into your day.
  • Try to quit smoking and limit alcohol.
  • And ask your doctor about regular cancer screenings.

DR. RODGERS: For more tips, follow us @NIDDKgov. This is Dr. Griffin Rodgers.

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