The study, conducted by Dr. Zohar Levi and his team at the Rabin Medical Center in Israel, examined one million 17-year-old males at their health check for military service and tracked their BMI. The subjects were followed for an average of 18 years into their late thirties and tracked against the national cancer registry, with subjects who were overweight showing a 2.1 fold increased risk of developing esophageal cancers and teens of a low socioeconomic background showing a 2.2 fold increased risk of developing intestinal gastric cancer.
Dr. Levi noted: "Adolescents who are overweight and obese are prone to esophageal cancer, probably due to reflux that they have throughout their life. Also, a lower socioeconomic position as a child has a lot of impact upon incidence of gastric cancer as an adult."
He added that the effects of losing weight later in life or rising in socioeconomic status had not been shown to decrease the cancer risk of overweight teens.