obesity

Weight stigma is real. Overweight and obese people are the targets of bias at work, school, at the doctor's office, within personal relationships and in the media.

A recent study published in Nature Genetics, describes a genetic link to obesity in humans discovered by studying obese children in Pakistan. One of the reasons that the genetics were uncovered in this region is because of the frequency of consanguinous (within the family) relationships. The genes that were identified are recessive mutations and exhibit a trait when two copies of the mutation are present - something that is much more likely to occur when families interbreed. 

Saeed et al. used genome sequencing to find mutations in one specific gene related to obesity, adenylate cyclase 3 (ADCY3). What...

Back in 2012, we noted the good news that the prevalence of obesity and severe obesity in children served by federal food assistance programs had diminished. The trend seems to be continuing according to more recent research. Between 2000 and 2014, the prevalence of severe obesity in children aged 2 to 4 years who were enrolled in the WIC (1) nutrition supplementation program, declined slightly, but significantly.

Dr. Liping Pan from the CDC...

It's common knowledge that as a country, we've been getting fatter for decades. In some states the prevalence of obesity is over 35 percent, as it is in adults over all, as shown in the graphic below.

 

Probably it's less widely known that there are at least 13 different types of cancer that are associated with overweight (BMI = 25-29.9) and obesity (BMI = or > 30), according to Dr. C. Brooke Steele of the CDC, and colleagues. These include: adenocarcinoma of the esophagus; cancers of the breast [in postmenopausal women], colon and rectum, endometrium,...

Insulin resistance is a hallmark of type 2 diabetes, and occurs in more than one type of body tissue. For example, insulin-resistant muscle will not respond normally when insulin directs it to take up glucose from the blood. And the liver of an insulin - resistant person won't stop its production and secretion of glucose into the blood as it should. As a result, blood glucose rises to abnormal, and possibly dangerous levels. In other words, a person becomes diabetic. Obesity is a major risk factor for diabetes and for insulin-resistant tissues, but how excess fat tissue causes insulin resistance isn't understood. A recent study in mice elucidates at least partially, a mechanism for how obesity instigates insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes.

Writing in the journal Cell...

Is breakfast really the most important meal of the day, and if you habitually skip it are you dooming yourself to obesity and worse? We don't think so, as we said in an article that points out most of the data on the topic come from epidemiological studies that show correlation, not causation. Yet research goes on, and we're keeping up with the latest, this time a study from Spain that examined the possible link between breakfast consumption and obesity — especially abdominal obesity, which is the type most closely associated with the risk of type 2 diabetes and other metabolic problems.

This epidemiological study included 1655 adults, about half each of men and women. About 53 percent were...

In a nod to science, Newsweek reported that there might be genetic underpinnings to obesity. So kudos for hopping on the science bandwagon and for a moment, not writing clickbait. But why not share the actual science instead of dumbing it down to “Regardless of how much you eat, your weight may be out of your hands?”  For the scientifically literate, wishing to learn more, here is what researcher Vann Bennett found.

A deficiency in the ANK2 gene, which codes for chemical activity on cell membranes, has been shown to cause obesity in mice. By extension,...

Apparently little attention has been paid to the risk of knee dislocation and vascular damage in obese and morbidly obese people, according to Dr. Christopher T. Born from the Warren Alpert Medical School of Brown University and colleagues. These investigators therefore analyzed data from the Nationwide Inpatient Sample (NIS) database from the years 2000 to 2012. They were particularly interested in the length of hospital stay after a knee dislocation, as well as the charges for those stays in obese, morbidly obese, and normal weight patients. Results of their study appear in the Journal of Orthopaedic Trauma.

To be clear, the dislocations...

College campuses are dictating what costumes are offensive. Social media is deluged with healthy Halloween options, like dispensing kale chips instead of the real good stuff. I have tried them, so there will be no convincing me they are better than the more desirable treats. Let’s not even go there with the chocolate covered Brussels sprouts taking over the internet.

Dentists are offering candy swaps as if one day of indulgence translates into exceptionable oral hygiene. Fake News! Besides the fact it is mainly a marketing tool at the core, but I digress.

Does everything need to be sanitized these days? It was enough when the rumors spread years ago about the possibility of turning Sesame Street’s Cookie Monster into Veggie Monster. Is anything sacred? When did this trend...

It’s a persistent question — does it make any difference how one’s meals are distributed during the day? Research has suggested that, given the same caloric intake, when one eats really doesn’t affect one’s body weight. But in free-living adults, would the caloric intake be the same? Or would one eating pattern make it more likely that a person would consume more and thus be more likely to gain weight? Dr. Rebecca Leech and colleagues from Deakin University in Victoria, Australia investigated the associations between eating patterns and nutrient intakes, diet quality, and adiposity. Their study was published in the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

These researchers used dietary data from two 24-hour...

In the latest report on the topic, the National Center for Health Statistics (NCHS) paints a rather depressing picture of the status of the nation's obesity prevalence. In brief, in 2015-2016, just about 40 percent of American adults and nearly 19 percent of youth qualified as obese. These data reflect an increase since the previous report on the 2013-14 stats.

The information is derived from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) — a yearly survey that involves actual interviews and measurements of about 5000 persons per year. Obesity in adults was determined as a BMI of 30 or more for adults, and in youth as a BMI greater...