However, what you eat can have a big impact on your risk of developing cancer.

One of the biggest risk factors for cancer is being overweight or obese. Eating 'fast foods' or other processed foods that are high in fat and sugar (like chocolate, crisps and biscuits) can make you gain weight, and there is strong evidence that being overweight or obese is a cause of 12 types of cancer.

Regularly drinking sugary drinks or drinking them in large quantities has also been linked to weight gain. It can be easy to drink too many sugary drinks as they aren't very filling, despite being quite high in calories. This can lead to weight gain, being overweight and obese, which in turn is a cause of many cancers.

What about artificial sweeteners?

There is no strong evidence in humans to suggest that artificially sweetened low-calorie drinks, such as diet soft drinks, are a cause of cancer. Earlier cancer scares linked with certain sweeteners have been discredited.


  1. World Cancer Research Fund. What can increase your risk of cancer? [online]. 2018. Available at: