One-Quarter of Colorectal Cancers Linked to Lifestyle

WASHINGTON — Lifestyle factors including smoking and eating red meat may cause one-quarter of colorectal cancer cases, a new study from Australia finds.

Colorectal cancer is the third most common cancer in the United States, and the second most common cancer in Australia.

The researchers found that smoking cigarettes and being overweight — that is, having a body mass index greater than 25 — each account for 9 percent of colon cancer cases in Australia, said lead study author Dr. Claire Vajdic, the head of the Cancer Epidemiology Research Unit at the University of New South Wales in Australia. Vajdic presented her findings here on Monday (April 3) at the American Association for Cancer Research’s annual meeting. The findings have not been published in a peer-reviewed journal.