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Obesity Blog

Related terms: Weight Gain, Overweight

Obesity During Pregnancy Linked to Raised Asthma Risk in Kids

Posted 24 hours ago by

TUESDAY, July 22, 2014 – Women who are obese during pregnancy may be more likely to have children with asthma than normal-weight mothers, a new review suggests. "We found that, compared with children born from mothers of normal weight, those whose mothers were overweight or obese during pregnancy had up to 20 to 30 percent higher odds of asthma," said lead researcher Dr. Erick Forno, an assistant professor of pediatrics at Children's Hospital of Pittsburgh. Forno's team also found that excess weight gain during pregnancy was associated with about a 16 percent increased risk of asthma in the children. "These results included studies that evaluated asthma at different time points in childhood, from a little over a year of age all the way to 16 years of age," Forno noted. Although this review of more than a dozen previously published studies found an association between a mother's weight ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Asthma

Waistlines of U.S. Kids Seem to Be Holding Steady, Study Finds

Posted 2 days 2 hours ago by

MONDAY, July 21, 2014 – The waistlines of America's children and teens may have stopped expanding, a new study indicates. The proportion of kids aged 2 to 18 who were classified as obese, based on their waist size, held steady at nearly 18 percent from 2003 to 2012, researchers report. "Kids are not getting fatter," said researcher Lyn Steffen, an associate professor of epidemiology at the University of Minnesota in Minneapolis. "Abdominal obesity has been stable over the years." Abdominal obesity fell significantly among children aged 2 to 5 years during that time frame, the study found. But one-third of kids aged 6 to 18 years remain abdominally obese – "too many," Steffen said. "We shouldn't have chubby kids or chubby adults either." Steffen credits the leveling off of childhood obesity largely to healthier school breakfasts and lunches and the removal of soda and candy from ... Read more

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Is Obesity an Advantage After Heart Procedures?

Posted 7 days ago by

WEDNESDAY, July 16, 2014 – While a host of cardiovascular ailments are associated with excess pounds, new research supports a puzzling "obesity paradox." It found that overweight heart patients experience fewer heart attacks and higher survival rates after cardiac procedures than their slimmer peers. Scientists reviewing 36 prior studies found that obese patients were up to 27 percent less likely to die after heart procedures such as coronary bypass surgery or angioplasty than normal-weight patients. But experts warned that under no circumstances do the results suggest that obesity is good medicine. "We want to make it very clear that we're not promoting being obese or overweight," said study author Dr. Abhishek Sharma, a cardiology fellow at State University of New York Downstate Medical Center in Brooklyn. "When we're talking about the underlying reasons for coronary artery disease, ... Read more

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Losing Weight May Ease Hot Flashes, Study Finds

Posted 13 days ago by

THURSDAY, July 10, 2014 – Slimming down may help ease the hot flashes that often accompany menopause, new research suggests. Hot flashes can be debilitating for more than 50 percent of menopausal women, said Dr. Taraneh Shirazian, an assistant professor of obstetrics, gynecology and reproductive science at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai Hospital in New York City. About one-third of menopausal women experience more than 10 hot flashes a day, and she added that hot flashes are more common in obese women. "Fat appears to function as an insulator, and interferes with heat dissipation," explained Shirazian, who was not involved in the study. Another expert, Dr. Jill Rabin, co-chief of ambulatory care and women's health programs at North Shore-LIJ Health System in New Hyde Park, N.Y., said estrogen can also be produced in fat tissue. Rabin said she has found that obese and ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Hot Flashes

60 Percent of Diners Use Calorie Labeling When Posted: CDC

Posted 13 days ago by

THURSDAY, July 10, 2014 – About six out of 10 adults make use of calorie information on menus, if it's available, to decide what to order in restaurants, according to a new U.S. study. Women in particular review the menu labeling, said the study's lead author, Seung Hee Lee-Kwan, an epidemiologist with the U.S. Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. Two-thirds of women surveyed said they used menu labeling to help choose their meal, compared with just under half of men, the study reports. That women are using the calorie postings can be seen as good news for the ongoing battle against childhood obesity, said Libby Mills, a registered dietitian/nutritionist in West Chester, Penn. "It's encouraging because they are typically caretakers of the children," said Mills, who is also a spokeswoman for the Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. "If they are looking at the nutrition ... Read more

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Obesity Epidemic Hitting Hispanics Hard, Study Finds

Posted 14 days ago by

WEDNESDAY, July 9, 2014 – Obesity is a growing problem among Hispanic Americans, especially among young adults, a new study shows. After analyzing data from more than 16,300 Hispanics in Chicago, Miami, New York City and San Diego, the researchers found that 18 percent of women and 12 percent of men had a body mass index (BMI) over 35. BMI is a measurement based on height and weight. People with a BMI over 30 are considered obese. A BMI over 35 is associated with increased health risks. Even more troubling, severe obesity (BMI over 40) was most common among young adults aged 25 to 34, affecting nearly one in 10 women and one in 20 men in this age group, according to the study in the July 9 issue of the Journal of the American Heart Association. The obesity epidemic among Hispanic Americans is "unprecedented and getting worse," study author Robert Kaplan, a professor of epidemiology and ... Read more

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Severe Obesity Cuts Up to 14 Years Off Life: Study

Posted 15 days ago by

TUESDAY, July 8, 2014 – People who are severely obese may lose as many as 14 years off their life, a new study suggests. U.S. researchers pooled data from 20 previous studies and found that a body mass index (BMI) greater than 40 – considered severe obesity – raises the odds of dying early from heart disease, cancer and diabetes compared to people of normal weight. "We found that the death rates in severely obese adults were about 2.5 times higher than in adults in the normal weight range," said lead investigator Cari Kitahara, a research fellow at the U.S. National Cancer Institute. Severe obesity accounts for an excess 509 deaths per 100,000 men each year, and 382 excess deaths per 100,000 women, she said. Whether losing weight would improve lifespan isn't clear, Kitahara said. But not becoming obese in the first place will extend your life, she added. Kitahara's team calculated ... Read more

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Will You Be Obese? Look at Your Sisters, Brothers

Posted 15 days ago by

TUESDAY, July 8, 2014 – Obesity is known to run in families, but new research suggests this relationship may be the strongest among siblings. Although older children in a two-child home with an obese parent are more than twice as likely to be obese, having an obese older sibling may raise the risk more than fivefold for a younger child, whether the parents are obese or not, the researchers reported. "Siblings have a lot of influence," said lead researcher Matthew Harding, an assistant professor in the Sanford School of Public Policy at Duke University in Durham, N.C. "Children often model their behavior on that of their older siblings. Older siblings can have a strong influence on the attitudes and behaviors of younger siblings in relation to nutrition and exercise," Harding noted. Although parents play a big role in determining their children's health, siblings may play an even ... Read more

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Inactivity May Be Main Culprit in Obesity Epidemic: Study

Posted 15 days ago by

TUESDAY, July 8, 2014 – Lack of exercise – and not a tendency to eat too much – may explain why an increasing number of Americans are obese, a new study suggests. Researchers analyzed U.S. government data from the last 20 years and found that the number of women who reported no physical activity rose from about 19 percent in 1994 to nearly 52 percent in 2010. The number of men who said they didn't exercise increased from about 11 percent to about 43 percent. Black and Mexican-American women showed the greatest decreases in reported exercise, the study authors found. During the study period, there was an increase in adults' average body mass index (BMI), an estimate of body fat based on height and weight, with the most dramatic rise among women aged 18 to 39. The researchers also found increased rates of abdominal obesity, especially among women. At the same time, calorie intake among ... Read more

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Obesity May Raise Risk of COPD

Posted 16 days ago by

MONDAY, July 7, 2014 – Obese people, particularly those with excess belly fat, may face a higher risk of developing chronic obstructive pulmonary disease (COPD), a new study suggests. The researchers report that women with a waist size of roughly 43 inches or more and men with waist size of 46 inches or more showed a 72 percent increased risk of developing the lung disease, compared with people who had a normal waist size. COPD, also known as emphysema and chronic bronchitis, is the third leading cause of death in the United States, according to the American Lung Association. "It is already known that COPD may be prevented by avoiding exposure to tobacco smoke, air pollution and occupational dust damaging the lungs," said lead researcher Gundula Behrens, from the department of epidemiology and preventive medicine at the University of Regensburg in Germany. "But maintaining a normal ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Chronic Obstructive Pulmonary Disease

Many Obese Women Face Stigma Every Day, Study Finds

Posted 16 days ago by

MONDAY, July 7, 2014 – Women who are overweight and obese are likely to experience frequent, daily insults and humiliation from strangers, family and friends, according to a new study. Fifty overweight and obese women kept week-long diaries that reported a total of 1,077 "weight-stigmatizing" events, with an average of three negative events per individual over seven days. "Obesity is connected to numerous social stereotypes in our society: having less stamina and drive, being less competent, and seeming less likable," said Jason Seacat, lead author of the study and associate professor of psychology at Western New England University, in Springfield, Mass. "The heavier an individual, the more stigma they face." Diary entries from the women showed several common types of weight stigmatization: physical barriers (84 percent), nasty comments from others (74 percent), being stared at (72 ... Read more

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Grief in Pregnancy May Trigger Obesity in Adulthood

Posted 29 Jun 2014 by

FRIDAY, June 27, 2014 – Unborn children of mothers exposed to severe stress are more likely than others to grow up overweight or obese, even if that stress occurred months before pregnancy, a new Danish study has found. Children whose biological fathers died while they were in the womb were twice as likely to become obese as adults, because of the stress of bereavement on their mother, the study authors said. But children also had an increased risk of adult overweight or obesity if their mothers experienced the death of a close relative up to six months prior to their conception. A mother's response to stress apparently has long-term effects on the child she carries, said study senior author Carsten Obel, an associate professor of public health at Aarhus University in Aarhus, Denmark. "That maternal stress can influence the development of the fetal stress system seems quite plausible," ... Read more

Related support groups: Anxiety and Stress, Obesity

Healthy Weight Loss May Bring Better Sleep, Brighter Mood

Posted 24 Jun 2014 by

TUESDAY, June 24, 2014 – Dropping excess pounds may not only improve your physical health, it might also help you feel more awake and happy, a new study shows. The research, presented this week at the joint meeting of the International Society of Endocrinology and the Endocrine Society in Chicago, included 390 obese women and men who were assigned to one of three programs meant to help them lose weight through diet and exercise. One group received usual care, in which they were given printed educational materials during visits every three months with their primary care provider. The second group saw their primary care provider every three months, and also had brief meetings with lifestyle coaches. The third group met with their primary care providers and lifestyle coaches, and also received meal replacements and weight-loss medications. Changes in the participants' weight, amount and ... Read more

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Gut Microbes Differ in Obese or Diabetic People, Study Finds

Posted 23 Jun 2014 by

MONDAY, June 23, 2014 – Obese people and those with type 2 diabetes have lower levels of common types of "good" intestinal bacteria than healthy people, a new study reveals. The findings may be important, because measuring populations of these bacteria and other microscopic organisms in the intestines could help spot people at risk for obesity and diabetes, or the bacteria might offer targets for treating these conditions, the researchers said. The study was presented Sunday at the annual joint meeting of the International Society of Endocrinology and the Endocrine Society in Chicago. "Further studies should be carried out to elucidate if the gut microbial changes are a cause or effect of metabolic diseases," study lead investigator Dr. Yalcin Basaran, an endocrinologist from Gulhane Military Medical Academy School of Medicine in Ankara, Turkey, said in a meeting news release. ... Read more

Related support groups: Obesity, Diabetes, Type 2

Cooler Indoor Temps May Help 'Good Fat' Grow

Posted 23 Jun 2014 by

MONDAY, June 23, 2014 – An easy health boost may be as close as the nearest thermostat, a new study suggests. Australian researchers found that cooler indoor temperatures stimulate the growth of healthy brown fat, while warm temperatures cause the loss of this beneficial type of fat. Numerous studies have found that brown fat burns energy to generate body heat: it's designed to help keep babies and small animals warm. Prior research has also shown that animals with plentiful brown fat are less likely to develop obesity or diabetes. The new study involved five healthy men and was led by Dr Paul Lee, an endocrinologist at the Garvan Institute of Medical Research in Sydney. His team exposed the men to different room temperatures over four months: 75 degrees Fahrenheit during the first month, 66 degrees during the second month, back to 75 degrees during the third month, and 80.5 degrees ... Read more

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