Brought to you by HBO and the nation’s leading research institutions, this documentary series confronts the realities of living with obesity. Broken down into four parts, each segment addresses something different from the true scope of the obesity epidemic to the damage obesity is doing to our nation’s children.
Part 1: Consequences
Part 2: Choices
Part 3: Children in Crisis
Part 4: Challenges
Danger of Weight Bias Internalization
A recent study conducted at The University of Pennsylvania points to potential dangers of weight bias internalization. While the results are mixed, there is new evidence to support the association between weight bias internalization and risk for metabolic syndrome.
Weight bias includes (WBI) pervasive negative stereotypes and prejudice regarding an individual’s overweight, such as attributions of responsibility and/or incompetence. New research suggests that adults with obesity seeking weight-loss treatment, who scored higher on a WBI scale were more likely to have metabolic syndrome compared to those with lower scores.
Over the years, researchers have proven time after time that beige fat possesses both the qualities of white and brown fat. This “hybrid fat” can not only hoard energy, like white fat, but also burn energy, similar to brown fat.
In 2015, researchers discovered another interesting feature of beige fat: it has the ability to switch between storing and burning energy. Most recently, researchers at the University of California, San Francisco found a way of keeping beige cells in the energy-burning state.
Why does this matter? By preventing beige fat cells from digesting their own mitochondria, researchers actually protected mice against obesity and symptoms of prediabetes. A graduate student who worked on the study, Svetlana Altshuler-Keylin, explains. “We knew that the color of brown and beige fat comes from the amount of pigmented mitochondria they contain, so we wondered whether something was going on with the mitochondria when beige fat turns white.”
New Clues to Cardiometabolic Risk
Long-Term Benefits of Weight Loss
The Joslin Diabetes Center released information from a recent study showing that weight loss and the cardiovascular benefits associated continue for at least five years into the future. This intense life-style intervention program, specifically designed for obese patients with diabetes, is referred to as the Why WAIT (Weight Achievement and Intensive Management) program.
The study led by Dr. Osama Hamdy followed 129 Why WAIT participants with an average body-mass index (BMI) of 38. After the initial 12 week intervention, participants showed an average loss of body weight of 9.7% (about 24 pounds) and maintained an average loss of 6.4% (about 16 pounds at five years). Dr. Hamdy explains, “This weight loss was very impressive, since we know from previous research that if this population can maintain a 7% weight loss, they show a marked improvement in insulin sensitivity and many other cardiovascular risk factors.”
Follow Up: The Obesity Gene
Despite years of extensive research, there is still much we do not understand about obesity. As a follow up to our blog post “Obesity Gene May Hold the Key to Eradicating Obesity,” we’ve been following the research of scientists in Germany that say they’ve discovered a genetic ‘switch’ that could essentially turn obesity on or off.
The new study is founded on epigenetics research, the way the genes in our body change based on chemical and environmental factors. According to this line of thought, we are born with a set of genes that can be turned off or on, dialed up or down through processes inside the body. This usually explains why identical twins don’t always look identical.
For the first time, a direct link between a gene and fat production has been discovered. The results of recent research could reduce obesity altogether. The research was published in Nature Communications and brings an end to a four-year study and provides the perfect catalyst for further research.
Did you know it is now estimated more than two-thirds of Americans are overweight or obese? Well, new genetic-based findings could help develop drug therapies that diminish the obesity percentage. While scientists already know that there are many reasons why two people with the same diets and exercise regimens can gain different amounts of weight and why fat becomes stored in different parts of their bodies there had been no significant evidence of genes playing a role in this. Recently, an international collaboration of scientists helped researchers hone in on genetic reasons for the crippling epidemic of obesity.
Recently published, the National Institutes of Health, led by the National Heart, Lung & Blood Institute, organized a working group of experts to discuss the problem of weight regain after weight loss.
Experts included integrative physiologists and behavioral psychologists, all with the goal of merging their perspectives regarding the barriers to scientific progress and the development of novel ways to improve long-term outcomes in obesity therapeutics. The ultimate goals of this panel were to:
A recent study has shown that being overweight or obese beginning in early adulthood is associated with increased aortic stiffness and decreased performance in a memory test around age 60. Similar to the impact of cigarette “pack-years” on health, the number of “obesity-years” has an impact on later memory as well.
Researchers investigated this in a 30-year follow up of participants in the United Kingdom Medical Research Council’s National Survey of Health and Development birth cohort study. They analyzed data from 1233 participants in the cohort study. Participants had complete data for BMI, aortic pulse-wave velocity, aortic calcification score and carotid IMT, which was determined at age 36,43,53 and 60 to 64. Participants were divided into seven groups based on their BMIs.
Obesity and asthma are major public health concerns in the United States. The links between asthma and obesity are widely studied and well known; however, the effects of weight loss on asthma severity are not as evident. The following study aimed to examine whether weight reduction reduces asthma severity in adult obese-asthmatics especially by measuring airway hyper-responsiveness.
Medical Metabolic Specialists, located in Fort Collins, Colorado, is dedicated to using the latest scientific techniques to create a comprehensive, individualized. lifelong weight management program to improve your overall health.