Sugar substitutes linked to obesity

Sugar substitutes linked to obesity
Artificial sweetener seems to change gut microbiome.
17 September 2014

The artificial sweeteners that are widely seen as a way to combat obesity and diabetes could, in part, be contributing to the global epidemic of these conditions.

FTO—the first GWAS-identified obesity gene

The bigger picture of FTO—the first GWAS-identified obesity gene
Nature Reviews Endocrinology  10, 51–61 (2014)
Ruth J. F. Loos & Giles S. H. Yeo

Single nucleotide polymorphisms (SNPs) that cluster in the first intron of fat mass and obesity associated (FTO) gene are associated obesity traits in genome-wide association studies.
The minor allele increases BMI by 0.39 kg/m2 (or 1,130 g in body weight) and risk of obesity by 1.20-fold.
This association has been confirmed across age groups and populations of diverse ancestry; the largest effect is seen in young adulthood.
The effect of FTO SNPs on obesity traits in populations of African and Asian ancestry is similar or somewhat smaller than in European ancestry populations.
However, the BMI-increasing allele in FTO is substantially less prevalent in populations with non-European ancestry.
FTO SNPs do not influence physical activity levels; yet, in physically active individuals, FTO’s effect on obesity susceptibility is attenuated by approximately 30%.
Evidence from epidemiological and functional studies suggests that FTO confers an increased risk of obesity by subtly changing food intake and preference.
Moreover, emerging data suggest a role for FTO in nutrient sensing, regulation of mRNA translation and general growth.
In this Review, we discuss the genetic epidemiology of FTO and discuss how its complex biology might link to the regulation of body weight.

Just What The Doctor Ordered: Med Students Team With Chefs

Just What The Doctor Ordered: Med Students Team With Chefs
September 18, 2013

So-called lifestyle diseases mainly spring from bad habits, particularly bad eating habits.
Think obesity or diabetes.
Piper says the goal of this partnership between New Orleans, Louisiana-based Tulane and Johnson & Wales is to change the way doctors think about food.

One of their assignments is to feed the Johnson & Wales track team.
The team will arrive breathless and sweaty after practice. According to assistant professor Todd Seyfarth, an instructor in culinary nutrition, the assignment is to create a “recovery meal.”

“We’re going to try to take advantage of what’s called an anabolic window, a specific period of time after the workout where we can give them the best gains,” he says.

see also:

Bariatric Surgery

For Many, Affordable Care Act Won’t Cover Bariatric Surgery
May 27, 2013

What makes bad food so good? NPR and Oxford American, team up to explore issues of appetite and health in Holmes County, the most obese county in Mississippi. It’s the first of an ongoing spotlight on the South called Southword.

Transoral outlet reduction
January 19, 2015


The Unease Over Classifying Obesity As A Disease

The Unease Over Classifying Obesity As A Disease
June 24, 2013

More than 1 in 3 Americans are obese, and the problem isn’t shrinking. The American Medical Association recently voted to classify obesity as a disease, but not everyone likes the decision.

Dr. Patrice Harris is a member of the board of the American Medical Association. She’s also the director of Public Health in Fulton County, Georgia.

Dr. Neil Minkoff is a medical consultant at Fountainhead HealthCare in Boston. He formerly practiced as an internist. He’s also a regular contributor to our barbershop roundtable.

Dr. William Stratbucker is a physician who specializes in obesity, in Grand Rapids, Michigan.

semantics … obesity’s designation as a disease

MINKOFF: I have two concerns about the semantics of classifying obesity as a disease. … One is I’m not really sure, to our patient population, it matters a tremendous amount if something is a disease versus a condition or a disorder

it becomes harder to talk about personal responsibility.
She says, “I give patients the, you don’t want to be the 40-year-old person in the cripple cart at Walmart, do you?”
Most say no, but some just give me the drop dead stare.

some people do need to step up with their motivation and worry about their lifestyle.

People who have mental health concerns, … ends up being an eating disorder.
There’s developmental delay in kids and adults, and those people are particularly troubling for their families to tackle, and sometimes they go to using food to control their behavior.

there’s a lot of stigma attached to having excess weight.

see also:

The Weight Of A Med Student’s Subconscious Bias

The Weight Of A Med Student’s Subconscious Bias
May 23, 2013

More than a third of medical students in a North Carolina study had a bias against obese people, and most of those who have such a bias are unaware of it.

Harvard’s Implicit Association Test on weight.

“If doctors assume obese patients are lazy or lack willpower, they will be less likely to spend time counseling patients about lifestyle changes they could make”

Keyword: prejudice against the obese, obesity

more on prejudice against the obese in:
Chapter 1. Introducing Social Psychology
Myers, D. G. (2012). Social psychology (11th ed.). New York: McGraw-Hill.