Tuesday, January 1, 2013
Brunei - 'Fight obesity to cut risk of breast cancer'
IF OBESITY among children is not tackled, they may be at risk of developing breast cancer in the future, said a consultant oncologist at the Ministry of Health yesterday.
In an interview with The Brunei Times, Associate Professor Dr Hj Muhammad Syafiq said breast cancer is associated with obesity and the risk of developing the cancer increases with age.
"We do not want to wait for it (breast cancer) to happen. We must try to reduce it."
Associate Professor Dr Hj Muhammad Syafiq also said that breast cancer affects both men and women. However the percentage affecting men is small.
There is only one per cent of breast cancer cases in Brunei that involve men, he added.
"Over the period of 10 years, there were only four cases (of men with breast cancer)," he added.
He further explained that most of the men who were diagnosed with breast cancer were the elderly folk.
"What can now be said is that breast cancer is found to be related with obesity," said the associate professor.
"In theory, breast cancer could affect anyone who is obese regardless of gender."
Associate Professor Dr Hj Muhammad Syafiq spoke to The Brunei Times on the sidelines of the Breast Cancer Awareness Month 2012 celebration at the Tutong Community Hall held in November 2012.
At the event, he delivered a presentation titled, "Breast Cancer in Brunei Darussalam".
During his presentation, he adviced ways to lower the risk of acquiring the non-communicable disease such as losing weight for those who are obese as well as being rigorous about examining one's breasts, regular clinical exams and mammograms.
In an article published by The Brunei Times, November 21, 2012, the Minister of Health, Yang Berhormat Pehin Orang Kaya Johan Pahlawan Dato Seri Setia Hj Adanan Begawan Pehin Siraja Khatib Dato Seri Setia Hj Mohd Yusof cited preliminary results of Phase Two of the Brunei Darussalam Second National Health and Nutritional Status Survey 2009-2011 said that 8.8 per cent of Bruneian children under the age of five are overweight and 3.3 per cent of them are obese.
NURHAMIZA HJ ROSLAN
The Brunei Times