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Health expert says obesity in Pacific linked to bowel cancer

25 August 2017

Posted in: Pacific Radio News,

A health expert says there's a link between obesity among Pacific people and bowel cancer. 

New Zealand has one of the highest rates of bowel cancer in the world and is steady climbing, especially among people under 25.

Microbiologist and Senior Research Fellow at Otago University, Jacqueline Keenan, says a direct association has been established between the two health conditions. 

"You've got obesity coming through in both males and females in the Pacific Island population in New Zealand as being a risk factor for colon or rectum cancer."

She says unfamiliar lifestyles and diets are contributing to obesity problems for Pacific people living in New Zealand.

"They're more prone to developing obesity because their gut bacteria aren't used to processing that type of food," says Keenan.

Tags: health,