London: Snacking on sweet treats like biscuits, cakes, fizzy drinks, crisps and desserts may increase the risk of bowel cancer, a new UK study suggests.
Researchers investigated various factors including diet, levels of physical activity and smoking in Scottish bowel cancer patients.
They found links with some established risk factors of colorectal cancer - such as family history of cancer, physical activity and smoking.
Their findings also identified new factors including high-energy snacks, `BBC News` reported.
The research which used data from the Scottish Colorectal Cancer Study, was said to be first of its kind to find a positive link between bowel cancer and a diet high in sugary and fatty foods.
Scientists at Aberdeen and Edinburgh universities looked at the diets of 2,000 bowel cancer patients and compared them to the food and drink intake of a similar-sized healthy population.
They examined more than 170 foods, including fruit, vegetables, fish and meat, as well as high-energy snack foods such as chocolates, nuts and crisps and fruit drinks including fruit squash.
The western dietary pattern was found to be associated with an increased colorectal cancer risk while as healthy dietary pattern was found to be associated with a decreased risk.