Research published today on bmj.com reports that a new computerized device that can track portion size and how fast people eat, is more successful in helping obese children and adolescents lose weight than standard treatments. Developed at the Karolinska Institute in Stockholm, the Mandometer device is a portable computerized weighing scale. It is used to retrain individuals to eat less and more slowly by providing real-time feedback during meal times. A graph is plotted by the device showing the rate at which food actually disappears from the plate. It is compared to the ideal graph programmed in by a food therapist. Childhood obesity is an increasing global problem. Furthermore, there is little evidence to support one particular treatment program. In this study the patients ate large portions very rapidly. However, it is unclear whether specific eating patterns are common in all obese people. Professor Julian Hamilton-Shield led researchers at Bristol Royal Hospital for Children and the University of Bristol.
A multi-disciplinary team of Penn researchers, including diabetes, weight loss and bariatric surgery experts, are conducting a study funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to determine if bariatric surgery, either gastric bypass or adjustable gastric banding surgery, is more effective than lifestyle modification to reduce weight and ultimately treat Type 2 diabetes. This study will also test whether people with a lower body mass index (BMI) a BMI of 30 or greater, compared to the current NIH-recommended 35 or greater BMI may benefit from surgery to treat type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure or other significant health problems. With evidence suggesting that weight loss surgery often leads to significant improvement in type 2 diabetes, many experts believe that this BMI recommendation should be lowered for people who are both overweight and have type 2 diabetes. Additional data from randomized controlled trials, such as this study, are needed to help better understand who the most appropriate candidates for weight loss surgery are.
US researchers have claimed that a cheap form of sugar used in thousands of food products and soft drinks can damage human metabolism and is fuelling the obesity crisis. Dangerous growth of fat cells The study by a team at the University of California claimed fructose, a sweetener derived from corn, can cause dangerous growths of fat cells around vital organs has increasingly been used as a substitute for more expensive types of sugar in yoghurts, cakes, salad dressing and cereals. Over 10 weeks, 16 volunteers on a strictly controlled diet, including high levels of fructose, produced new fat cells around their heart, liver and other digestive organs. It was reported that they also showed signs of food-processing abnormalities linked to diabetes and heart disease. Another group of volunteers on the same diet, but with glucose sugar replacing fructose, did not have these problems. People in both groups put on a similar amount of weight. However, the researchers said the levels of weight gain among the fructose consumers would be greater over the long term.
David Stout, director of the NHS Confederation's PCT Network, comments on claims by the Royal College of Surgeons that patients are not being given appropriate access to weight-loss surgery on the NHS. "All PCTs are working with local NHS services to deal with the increasing rates of obesity in England and have arrangements in place to treat those patients who will require surgery. "The National Institute for Health and Clinical Excellence (NICE) provides PCTs with guidance on which patients should be considered for weight-loss surgery as part of a wider strategy to address obesity including encouraging natural weight loss through other means. Additionally, all PCTs have public health strategies in place which encourage a healthier diet and lifestyle. "PCTs need to balance their priorities across a wide range of services, taking into account NICE guidance in the context local needs. But it is important that all commissioners are transparent in their decision-making." Notes The PCT Network represents the majority of primary care trusts in England.
It's time to set the record straight. The only reliable way to lose weight is to eat less or exercise more. Preferably both. So why bother to state the obvious? Because a body of scientific literature has arisen over recent years, suggesting that fat oxidation - burning the fats we eat as opposed to the carbohydrates - is enough to promote fat loss. It isn't. Sydney scientists have demonstrated that mice genetically altered to burn fats in preference to carbohydrates, will convert the unburned carbohydrates into stored fat anyway, and their ultimate weight and body composition will be the same as normal mice. It all comes down to an enzyme known as ACC2 (acetyl-CoA carboxylase), which controls whether cells burn fats or carbohydrates. When it was shown that 'blocking' ACC2 will force cells to burn fats in preference to carbohydrates, many assumed that such 'fat burning' could make fat stores evaporate, and make people thin without changing food intake or energy expenditure. Associate Professor Greg Cooney, from Sydney's Garvan Institute of Medical Research, discusses misconceptions surrounding ACC2 in findings that appear in the prestigious international journal, Cell Metabolism, online.
When your New Year's resolution to lose weight crumbles as fast as the cookie touching your lips, it's time to admit that diets don't work. More successful is a holistic approach to losing weight that lets you feel good about feeding your body the nourishment it craves. "By understanding the whole person, including emotional reasons for eating, stress triggers, medical history and physiological factors, we help each individual approach food in a whole new way, " said Henri Roca, MD, medical director of Greenwich Hospital's Center for Integrative Medicine. Dr. Roca, board-certified in Family Medicine and Holistic Medicine, works with the Center of Integrative Medicine's registered dietitian and epigenetic nutritionist to help people understand why they eat what they do. "We look at the emotional aspects of eating and the habits an individual creates surrounding their relationship with food, " said Roca, who points to genetics, metabolism, hormones and physiological factors as potential stumbling blocks to successful long-term weight management.
Researchers in Australia found that prolonged television viewing was linked to an increased risk of death, even in people who exercised regularly, and recommended more be done to encourage people to spend fewer hours sitting still in front of the TV. The study, which appeared online on 11 January in the journal Circulation, is the work of lead author Dr David Dunstan, a researcher at the Baker IDI Heart and Diabetes Institute in Melbourne, and colleagues. The researchers wrote that studies have been done on television viewing time and health, but these have focused on links with cardiovascular risk, and not risk of death. So for this study they investigated the link between prolonged television viewing time and all-cause, cardiovascular, cancer and non- cardiovascular/non-cancer mortality in Australian adults. One of the surprising things they found was that even for people who exercised regularly, the risk of death went up the longer they spent in front of the TV: they suggest the problem was the prolonged periods of sitting still.
Obese white men who have both diabetes and prostate cancer have significantly worse outcomes following radical prostatectomy than do men without diabetes who undergo the same procedure, according to research from Duke University Medical Center appearing in Cancer Epidemiology, Biomarkers & Prevention. Many studies have shown that diabetes is associated with a lower risk of developing prostate cancer -- at least in white men -- but the effect of diabetes on outcomes after prostate cancer surgery has not been as clear. "We found that diabetes was significantly associated with more aggressive disease in obese white men and less aggressive disease for all other subsets of men in our study, " says Stephen Freedland, M.D., associate professor of urology and pathology at the Duke Prostate Center at Duke University and member of the Urology Section, Veterans Affairs Medical Center in Durham. Researchers have spent years assessing the interplay among race, weight, diabetes and prostate cancer and have come up with mixed results.
Recent research backs up University of Leicester campaign to promote healthy eating amongst students A survey of eating habits among first year self-catering students showed that university lifestyle tends to lead to an increased consumption of fast foods. This was more noticeable amongst male students, who confessed to thinking of cooking as 'women's work' and were more likely to eat fast food than their female counterparts, while female students were more likely to be influenced by worries about weight gain and appearance. The study, carried out by student Hannah Cooper under the supervision of Dr Ellen Annandale at the University of Leicester Department of Sociology, also indicated that students' fast food consumption increased when they left home and began to cater for themselves, in spite of the known link between fast food consumption and obesity. Convenience, peer pressure and budget appear to be the main reasons for their eating habits, while the gender difference is widened by a male culture of greater alcohol consumption though males also played more sport.
The prevalence of high weight for length or high body mass index (BMI) among children and teens in the U.S. (i.e., at or above the 95th percentile), ranges from approximately 10 percent for infants and toddlers, to approximately 18 percent for adolescents and teenagers, although these rates appear to have remained relatively stable over the past 10 years, except for an increase for 6- to 19-year-old boys who are at the very heaviest weight levels, according to a study appearing in the January 20 issue of JAMA. The study is being published early online because of its public health importance. "High BMI among children and adolescents continues to be a public health concern in the United States. Children with high BMI often become obese adults, and obese adults are at risk for many chronic conditions such as diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and certain cancers, " the authors write. "Since 1980, the prevalence of BMI for age at or above the 95th percentile (sometimes termed 'obese') has tripled among school-age children and adolescents, and it remains high at approximately 17 percent.