October 5, 2015 – Brain Tumors and Weight


Anchor lead: Is there a relationship between overweight and certain brain tumors? Elizabeth Tracey reports

Over a third of all brain tumors actually develop from the tissue covering of the brain and are called meningiomas.  Now a new study implicates overweight and obesity in the development of these tumors.  Jon Weingart, a neurosurgeon at Johns Hopkins, describes the findings.

Weingart: What they found was that in people who have higher weight, and the way that they divided that up was BMI, if they had a BMI of 25 to 29, that they had a 20% higher risk for meningioma, and those who were obese, which is defined as a BMI of greater than 30, had about a 50% higher risk of meningioma.  They also found that high physical activity levels conferred about a 25% lower risk for meningioma.   :26

Weingart says the study didn’t examine whether so-called ‘fit and fat’ people, those who are overweight but very physically active, also had an increased risk for meningiomas, and says the study doesn’t explain why obesity and these tumors may be related, but says a healthy weight and exercise are always good choices.  At Johns Hopkins, I’m Elizabeth Tracey.