The risk of developing obesity-related cancer is increasing in successive generations, along with increasing rates of obesity, a new study said. Researchers studied the incidence of 30 of the most common cancers from 1995 to 2014 in people ages 25-84 — more than 14.6 million cases. The study is in Lancet Public Health. They found that for six of the 12 obesity-related cancers studied (multiple myeloma, colorectal, uterine, gallbladder, kidney and pancreatic) the risk for disease increased in adults 25-49, with the magnitude of the increases steeper with younger age. For example, compared with people born in 1950, those born in 1985 had a 59 percent higher risk of multiple myeloma, and a risk of pancreatic cancer more than twice as high at comparable ages.

Even 20-second bursts of exercise may help

As little as 20 seconds of brisk stair climbing, done several times a day, might be enough exercise to improve fitness. Exercise scientists at McMaster University in Ontario tested the effects of intense training broken into a series of “exercise snacks.” A group of healthy but inactive college students were directed to do a few jumping jacks, squats and lunges and then hurry up 60 steps — three flights of stairs. These ascents lasted about 20 seconds. The volunteers repeated that twice more that day. By the end of six weeks, exercisers had increased their aerobic fitness about 5 percent. The study was published in Applied Physiology, Nutrition, and Metabolism.

Higher blood pressure, lower brain volume

Elevated blood pressure in people younger than 40 is associated with reduced brain volume, a study found. The analysis, published in Neurology, included 423 adults ages 19 to 40. Researchers divided the blood pressure findings into categories increasing in four steps from less than 120/80 to greater than 140/90. They found that higher blood pressure readings were directly correlated with lower gray matter volume. Even in the groups with pressure within a range widely considered normal — between 120 and 140 systolic (the top number) — brain volumes were smaller compared with those with readings less than 120.