Cancer rates lower for Norway immigrants / News / The Foreigner

Cancer rates lower for Norway immigrants. And foreigners moving to Norway are less prone to bowel and breast cancer than their ethnic Norwegian compatriots, a recent study finds. Kirsti Vik Hjerkind at Norway’s Cancer Register, explains that she and her co-researchers see that cancer incidence differences are considerable, “especially when we compare immigrants from low-income regions with the general population.” “Largely, the disparities are in the immigrants' favour. In particular, immigrants are protected from typical lifestyle-related cancers, such as colon cancer and lung cancer,” she adds.

cancer, research, science, medicine, disease, illness, immigration, norwegians, norway, scandinavia, paywall



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Cancer rates lower for Norway immigrants

Published on Tuesday, 7th February, 2017 at 14:59 under the news category, by Sarah Bostock and Michael Sandelson   .

And foreigners moving to Norway are less prone to bowel and breast cancer than their ethnic Norwegian compatriots, a recent study finds.

A Stethoscope
A Stethoscope
Photo: Huji/Wikimedia Commons


Kirsti Vik Hjerkind at Norway’s Cancer Register, explains that she and her co-researchers see that cancer incidence differences are considerable, “especially when we compare immigrants from low-income regions with the general population.”

“Largely, the disparities are in the immigrants' favour. In particular, immigrants are protected from typical lifestyle-related cancers, such as colon cancer and lung cancer,” she adds.

According to researchers, a possible explanation for this is eating habits. They think that many immigrants probably continue their more plant-based diet from home, while the western diet has an increasing share of fat, sugar, alcohol, red meat, and salty, processed meat.

Lower amounts of alcohol and smoking less “than is typical in the West” also have an impact on the results.

Drinking alcohol can increase levels of oestrogen and other hormones associated with hormone-receptor-positive breast cancer. It may also increase the risk of breast cancer risk by damaging cells’ DNA. Smoking is linked to a higher risk of breast cancer in younger, premenopausal women.

But while the rate of breast and colorectal cancer is highest amongst those who were born in Norway, other cancer types are more common regarding immigrants from certain countries.

“Eastern European men are far more susceptible to lung cancer than the general population, says Kirsti Vik Hjerkind.  

Researchers discovered that lung cancer rates reach 50.7 cases per 100,000 per year. Rates amongst Norwegian men for the same period are 33.3 cases per 100,000 per year.

“And for some groups of immigrants from low-income countries, the incidence of liver cancer and stomach cancer is particularly high. Immigrants from parts of Asia and Africa have a higher risk of liver cancer than the general population. This is probably due to a hepatitis virus infection, which is prevalent in these areas,” she comments.

The rate regarding men from East Asia is up to ten times higher than rates among the rest of the Norwegian population – 19.7 cases per 100,000 as opposed to 1.9 for the general population.

To get their results, researchers linked immigration history for the complete population to information on cancer diagnosis from the Cancer Registry of Norway for the period 1990–2012.

Age-standardized (world) overall and site-specific cancer incidence were estimated for different immigrant groups and compared to incidence among individuals born in Norway.

Among 850,008 immigrants, 9,158 men and 10,334 women developed cancer. 263,316 men Norwegian-born men and 235,020 Norwegian-born women (among 5,508,429 Norwegian-born people) developed cancer.

Findings by researchers Kirsti Vik Hjerkind, Samera A Qureshi, Bjørn Møller, Elisabete Weiderpass, Dennis Deapen, Bernadette Kumar, and Giske Ursin are published in the International Journal of Cancer.

Other studies have shown that immigrants who move from low-income to high-income countries tend to adapt to the lifestyle of their new host country, which leads to changes in cancer incidence.

Although differences in cancer incidence across geographic regions are nothing new, researchers say that they decided to examine cancer incidence in immigrant groups in Norway “given worldwide changes in lifestyle factors over time.”

“This is the first time the incidence of cancer among immigrants in Norway is fully mapped,” they remark, adding that Norway has complete cancer registration, universal health care, and a recent immigration history.

(Additional source: breastcancer.org) 




Published on Tuesday, 7th February, 2017 at 14:59 under the news category, by Sarah Bostock and Michael Sandelson   .

This post has the following tags: cancer, research, science, medicine, disease, illness, immigration, norwegians, norway, scandinavia, paywall.





  
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