Obesity Research and Prevention Newsletter Review: 7 November 2011

by Paul Boisvert, PhD in collaboration with the Canadian Obesity Network  (CON)  and The Research Chair in Obesity from Université Laval
Follow Obesity News and more news on Twitter

 Network
News               

Archive: Obesity Research and Prevention Newsletter Review: Vol
9 no 25: 24 Oct 2011

International Congress on Abdominal Obesity Quebec City 9 to 12 July (Abstracts submission open)
Post doctoral Fellowship in Obesity in Université
Laval or University of Alberta: deadline 14 November

Epidemiology
– Evaluation
                               
Physical Activity Attenuates the Influence of FTO
Variants on Obesity Risk: A Meta-Analysis
31 oct
Carrying a copy of the FTO gene increases the risk of
becoming obese. However, the effect of the gene on obesity was 27 percent less
pronounced in individuals who were physically active compared with those who
were inactive.


Etiology – Determinants   
                               
Hormones linked to weight regain by making you more
hungry than before losing weight
– NEJM 27
Oct
The dieters also rated themselves as feeling hungrier
after meals at the one-year mark, compared to what they reported before the
diet program began. The key finding came from comparing the hormone levels from
before the weight-loss program to one year after it was over. Six hormones were
still out of whack in a direction that would boost hunger.
                            
This review summarizes the evidence and mechanistic insights on the
associations between RAS, obesity and insulin resistance, with special emphasis
on the role of adipose tissue RAS in the pathogenesis of metabolic derangements
in obesity.
Blood Glucose Levels Modulate Neural Control of
Appetite
 1 Nov Arya Sharma
Anyone, who has ever experienced even a mild drop in
blood glucose levels, understands the notion of hunger – preferentially
activating limbic-striatal brain regions.  In contrast, high-normal blood
glucose levels preferentially activated the medial prefrontal cortex, an area
of the brain involved in regulating impulse control and reducing motivation for
rewarding stimuli such as food and drugs. Interestingly, however, higher
circulating glucose levels predicted greater medial prefrontal cortex
activation only in lean but not in obese subjects.


Complications 
                                                    
Slide kit: Impact of obesity on cardiometabolic
risk: Will we lose the battle?
Treatment                                                        
High-Dose Vitamin D
Supplements Benefit Obese Adolescents
 3 Nov
Obese adolescents are only about half as efficient at
using vitamin D as their lean counterparts. For example, in lean adolescents it
only takes about 100 IUs to increase their serum 25OHD levels by 1 ng/ml. In
obese adolescents, it takes about 200 IUs to achieve the same increase ; If
obese adolescents only consumed the recommended 600 IUs, they would be in trouble;
physicians need to carefully evaluate the vitamin D status in their overweight
and obese patients
Obesity Pill Could Fool Brain To Eat Less  27 Oct
if we were to take a pill based on two simple gut
hormones (PYY and GLP-1) we would eat less because it would fool the brain by
signalling we’re full even if we’re not. In studies, volunteers who took one or
other of the hormones experienced reduced appetite and ate less.

Management – Prevention                                       
 
Video:
Intervention studies on food and built environments in four communities in
Alberta
5 Oct
Interview with Kim Raine

Commercial weight loss programs of 12 weeks’ duration
more effective than NHS-based services
, UK study finds  3 Nov
Commercial weight loss programmes are more effective
and cheaper than primary care based services led by specially trained staff,
finds a study published on bmj.com. The programmes included in the analyses
were Weight Watchers; Slimming World; Rosemary Conley; a group-based dietetics
programme; general practice one to one counselling, pharmacy one to one
counselling. All programmes achieved significant weight loss after 12 weeks,
with the average weight loss ranging from 4.4 kg (Weight Watchers) to 1.4 kg
(general practice provision). The primary care programmes were no better than
the control group at 12 weeks.

 Policy – Regulations                                           
       
Everything you need to know about the front of package
label regulation
Marion Nestle 6 Nov
front-of-package labels regulation is a test of the
FDA’s authority to regulate and set limits on any kind of food industry
behavior. If the FDA cannot insist that food labels help the public choose
healthier foods, it means the public has little recourse against any kind of
corporate power.

 Children – Pediatrics                       
                   
Childhood Diet Lower In Fat And Higher In Fiber May
Lower Risk For Chronic Disease In Adulthood
 31 Oct
A recent study has found that a childhood behavioral
intervention to lower dietary intake of total fat and saturated fat and
increase consumption of foods that are good sources of dietary fiber resulted
in significantly lower fasting plasma glucose levels and lower systolic blood
pressure when study participants were re-evaluated in young adulthood.

Overweight Teens Want To Lose Weight, Go About It The
Wrong Way
1 Nov
While most of the obese teens reported trying to lose
weight (about 75 percent), this group was also more likely to report smoking.
In addition, females trying to lose weight were more likely to report
participating in 60 minutes or more of physical activity per day; however,
these females were also prone to consume soda on a daily basis – regular, not
diet. Males who were trying to lose weight were more likely to report having no
days of physical activity, and also reported playing more than three hours of
video games per day.

Preventing
Obesity Among Preschool Children: How Can Child-care Settings Promote Healthy
Eating and Physical Activity?
Oct 
Research Synthesis Report

 Nutrition – Diet                                 
                   
A handful of nuts a day can keep hunger at bay and
beat belly fat
 3 Nov
This is the first time a link between eating nuts and
higher levels of serotonin – a substance that decreases appetite, boosts
happiness and improves heart health – has been detected. 90 per cent of the
body’s serotonin is located in the gut while he remainder is found in the
central nervous system where it regulates mood and appetite. Most prescribed
drugs used to treat conditions such as depression,  anxiety disorder and
social phobia treat are designed to alter serotonin levels.

 Physical Activity – Sedentarity                              
5 interviews on obesity, exercise and sedentary
behaviour
Obesity Panacea 22 Oct #csep11
Exercise May Reduce
Risk of Depression in Seniors
 3 Nov
Elderly people who are physically active are less
depressed, but higher levels of depression can also lead to less exercise. What
motivates elderly people to be physically active? Modern behavioral theories
suggest individuals who feel they are competent, make decisions for themselves,
have freedom of choice, and feel social relatedness linked to physical activity
experience a more internal and a less controlled form of motivation for
exercise.

Addicted to Exercise?NYTimes.com  29 Oct
Professor Linden explains how drugs such as cocaine
that light up these pleasure centers (there are several interconnected areas)
actually rewire the brain to increase cravings. Brain scans suggest that
everything from sugar to sex lights up the brain’s pleasure circuitry. Exercise
addicts display all of the hallmarks of substance addicts: tolerance, craving,
withdrawal and the need to exercise ‘just to feel normal

 Behaviour
– Consumption
                  
              
Slow eating may help weight control by suppressing the appetite more
efficiently
  BBC-news 27 Oct

People Pay Less Attention To Nutrition Labels Fact
Than They Think They Do
 26 Oct

These results differed from the
self-reported survey responses describing typical grocery shopping and health
behaviors submitted by the participants. 33% of participants self-reported that
they nearly always look at calorie content.

 Industry –
Marketing
                  
                
    
Self regulation by industry of food marketing is
having little impact during children’s preferred television
 October

The CAI (Canadian Children’s Food and Beverage Advertising Initiative)
was responsible for significantly more food/beverage promotions, and used media
characters and repetition more frequently in their food/beverage promotions
than the non-CAI group. Nutritionally, the CAI food/beverage promotions were
higher in fats, sugar, sodium and energy per 100 grams. A significantly greater
proportion of the CAI food/beverage promotions were considered ‘less healthy’
compared to the non-CAI promotions. The commitments that have been made in the
CAI are not having a significant impact on the food and beverage marketing
environment on television which is viewed by 10–12-year-olds.
The consumption of sugary sodas
has grown so much over the last three decades that they are now the number 1
source of calories in the diets of American teenagers. They found that the
sugary drinks industry specifically targets young Americans, especially
Hispanics and African-Americans. « Sugary Drinks FACTS »
« Summary of the Report » (PDF – 6 pages long)
« The Whole Report » (PDF, 232 pages long)

Obesity Research and Prevention News Review:: November 21 2011

by Paul Boisvert, PhD in collaboration with the Canadian Obesity Network  (CON)  and The Research Chair in Obesity from Université Laval
Follow Obesity News and more news on Twitter

Epidemiology – Evaluation                               
‘Freshman College 15’ Weight Gain a Myth? ‘Freshman 3’
May Be More Realistic
– NYTimes 7 Nov
According to a new study, freshmen actually gain an
average of 2.5 to 3.5 pounds, and the weight gain has little to do with college
attendance.

New Research Calls For Lower Limit To Be Set For South Asian Obesity
Level
: 9 Nov
Study determines that BMI 23-28 kg/m2 should be limit
compared with current limit of BMI 30 kg/m2, due to increased risk of heart
disease and diabetes among South Asians

Kids whose fathers were overweight were +4 times more
likely than other children to have weight problems themselves
11 Nov
On the other hand, an overweight or obese mother made
little difference to the chances of her child developing their own weight
problems.

Childhood Obesity Rate Dropping – California  14 Nov
From 2005 to 2010 the obesity/overweight rate in
children in California dropped one percentage point, offering hope that the
three-decade-long increase may be finally turning. However, the authors
emphasize that rates are still extremely high – three times higher among 12-19
year olds and four times higher among 6-11 year olds than they were in the
1970s.

Etiology – Determinants
                                
Gut Hormones PYY(3-36) and GLP-1(7-36 amide) can Mimic
Food Effects On Brain

DrSharma  11 Nov
Hunger and satiety are mediated by a range of
peripheral signals to the brain. A new study published in
Cell Metabolism, shows that infusion of two gut hormones can reduce food intake and
mimic the central effects of a meal in humans.

Metabolism Boosted By Enzyme, Weight Gain Prevented In Mice 16 Nov
Male and female mice engineered to express the
inflammatory enzyme IKKbeta in their fat tissue ate more but gained less
weight. They burned sugar and fat more effectively than mice who were left
unaltered. The research may shed light on how obesity and inflammation affect
insulin resistance and sensitivity.
 Role of the hypothalamus in the neuroendocrine
regulation of body weight and composition during energy deficit.
 Obesity Reviews – Nov
Energy deficit in lean or obese animals or humans
stimulates appetite, reduces energy expenditure and possibly also decreases
physical activity, thereby contributing to weight regain. Often overlooked in
weight loss trials for obesity, however, is the effect of energy restriction on
neuroendocrine status. Negative energy balance in lean animals and humans
consistently inhibits activity of the hypothalamo-pituitary-thyroid,
-gonadotropic and -somatotropic axes (or reduces circulating insulin-like
growth factor-1 levels), while concomitantly activating the
hypothalamo-pituitary-adrenal axis, with emerging evidence of similar changes
in overweight and obese people during lifestyle interventions for weight loss.
These neuroendocrine changes, which animal studies show may result in part from
hypothalamic actions of orexigenic (e.g. neuropeptide Y, agouti-related
peptide) and anorexigenic peptides (e.g. alpha-melanocyte-stimulating hormone,
and cocaine and amphetamine-related transcript), can adversely affect body
composition by promoting the accumulation of adipose tissue (particularly
central adiposity) and stimulating the loss of lean body mass and bone.
Health benefits of substituting water for
sugar-sweetened beverages
– YouTube myhealthywaist  8 Nov
This video presented by leading researchers and health
experts at the Sustaining the Blue Planet: Global Water Education Conference
details findings and applications on the importance of healthful hydration.
Let’s Go! School Nutrition Manager  examined the finding that healthy
hydration by water and decrease of sweetened beverages could help in reducing
cardiometabolic risk.
Drinking to our health: can beverage companies cut
calories while maintaining profits?
– Obesity Reviews – Nov
On a global basis, total revenues and energy per
capita sold increased, yet the average energy density (kJ 100 mL−1)
sold declined slightly, suggesting a shift to lower-calorie products. In the
United States, both total energy per capita and average energy density of
beverages sold decreased, while the opposite was true in the developing markets
of Brazil and China, with total per capita energy increasing greatly in China
and, to a lesser extent, in Brazil.


Fatty Foods Addictive as Cocaine in Growing Body of
Science
– Businessweek   9 Nov
A growing body of medical research at leading
universities and government laboratories suggests that processed foods and
sugary drinks made by the likes of PepsiCo Inc. and Kraft Foods Inc. aren’t
simply unhealthy. They can hijack the brain in ways that resemble addictions to
cocaine, nicotine and other drugs. Lab studies have found sugary drinks and
fatty foods can produce addictive behavior in animals. Brain scans of obese
people and compulsive eaters, meanwhile, reveal disturbances in brain reward
circuits similar to those experienced by drug abusers.


Complications 
                                                    
5 ways to reduce your risk of diabetes – 8 Nov
Drop extra pounds. Move more. Eat more fiber and whole
grains. Don’t smoke. Stick to one or two drinks max.
Report: Sports Drinks and Energy Drinks for Children
and Adolescents: Are They Appropriate?
  Nov
Sports and energy drinks are being marketed to
children and adolescents for a wide variety of inappropriate uses. Sports
drinks and energy drinks are significantly different products, and the terms
should not be used interchangeably. The primary objectives of this clinical
report are to define the ingredients of sports and energy drinks, categorize
the similarities and differences between the products, and discuss misuses and
abuses.
More evidence obesity tied to colon cancer:
 3 Nov
Older adults who are heavy, especially around the
middle, seem to have a higher risk of developing colon cancer than their
thinner peers, a new study finds. They also suggest that exercise could be an
important part of the picture, particularly for women.
Sugary Drinks: A Health Risk for Women | Medical News
and Health Information
 16 Nov
Drinking two or more sugar-sweetened beverages a day
may expand a woman’s waistline and increase her risk of heart disease and
diabetes, according to this study.
Treatment                                                        
New Drug Cuts Blood Supply To Fat
Cells For Weight Loss
 14 Nov
A study explains a new approach to weight loss, a drug called Adipotide, that
basically reduces the blood supply specifically to fat cells, causing them to
simply wither away.

Management – Prevention                                       
 
Your Body Is Ready and Set To Wait Months For Your
Weight To Come Back after Weight Loss
drsharma  8 Nov
The weight loss was associated with significant
reductions in levels of leptin, peptide YY, cholecystokinin, insulin, and
amylin, whereas levels of ghrelin, gastric inhibitory polypeptide, and
pancreatic polypeptide increased – most of these changes were still clearly
evident at 62 weeks. Given these profound and persistent hormonal changes that
affect hunger, appetite, and metabolism, it should come as no surprise that
maintaining weight loss is so difficult. It certainly seems like the
homeostatic system is happy to wait for the weight to come back – even if this
takes several months or even years.

A synthesis of meta-analyses of school-based
behavioural interventions for controlling and preventing obesity
 – Obesity Reviews –  Nov
Schools are an attractive and popular setting for
implementing interventions for children. There is a growing body of empirical
research exploring the efficacy of school-based obesity prevention programs.
Intervention components in the school setting associated with a significant
reduction of weight in children included long-term interventions with combined
diet and physical activity and a family component. Several reviews also found
gender differences in response to interventions. Of the eight reviews, five
were deemed of high quality and yet limited evidence was found on which to base
recommendations.
Doctors boost patients’ weight loss – NEJM 15 Nov
Physicians, with the aid of their medical assistants
and meal-replacement plans, can help obese people lose and keep off 10 pounds
over two years.  They also had improvements in their HDL (good)
cholesterol, triglycerides and waist circumferences.

Protein key to curbing overeating and preventing
obesity
– 15 Nov
The researchers found subjects who ate a 10 per cent
protein diet consumed 12 per cent more energy over four days than those eating
a 15 per cent protein diet. Moreover, 70 per cent of the increased energy
intake on the lower protein diet was attributed to snacking. When the protein
content was further increased to 25 per cent, however, the researchers observed
no change in behaviour relative to the 15 per cent protein diet. On the fourth
day of the trial, however, there was a greater increase in the hunger score
between one to two hours after the 10 per cent protein breakfast versus the 25
per cent protein breakfast. If you reduce your calorie intake but fail to reach
your protein target you will find it hard to resist hunger pangs.

Finland: Healthy lifestyle reduces death from heart
disease rate by up to 80%
 13 Nov
Regular exercise, a diet rich in fruit and vegetables,
and low in saturated fat are among the best steps we can take to beat heart
disease. Consuming less salt, ideally less than 5g per day, helps keep blood
pressure – a key risk factor for developing stroke – in the normal range.
Eating a diet rich in fruits and vegetables helps, as does avoiding obesity
(keeping your body mass index below 25) and reducing sugar consumption to
reduce the risk of diabetes. Working more than 11 hours a day raises a person’s
risk of cardiovascular disease compared with someone who works seven or eight
hours. Light to moderate drinking – about one unit of alcohol per day for women
and two for men – seems to offer some protection against coronary heart
disease, most likely because alcohol can improve cholesterol levels and reduce
the tendency of the blood to clot. Heavy or binge drinking, however, can cause
cardiovascular problems, and even light drinking is associated with an
increased risk of other diseases, such as cancer.

 Children – Pediatrics                       
                   
Web-based intervention appears ineffective for
preventing weight gain in adolescents:
7 Nov
A web-based computer-tailored intervention aiming to
increase physical activity, decrease sedentary behavior, and promote healthy
eating among adolescents was not associated with positive long-term outcome
measures, but may have positive short-term effects on eating behaviors,
according to a report published Online First by
Archives of Pediatrics &
Adolescent Medicine

Preventing Childhood Obesity: begin by focussing on
societal norms rather than lifestyle programs
DrSharma 10 Nov
The childhood obesity epidemic is just one symptom of
our way of living. Reversing the epidemic may require that we apply a new
approach to improving child health in the 21st century. One approach is
to make societal changes to enhance human well-being rather than to
prevent a particular symptom, such as childhood obesity. In the process, we may
address obesity and other socially determined health conditions while
preventing new ones from emerging.
Does Youth Sports Prevent Obesity? DrSharma  14 Nov
While their review of 19 studies on this topic showed
that kids participating in sports were indeed more physically active than kids
who did not participate, overall they found no clear relationship between
participation and weight status. While 12 studies did note some (albeit small)
differences in body weight in selected subgroups (but not the entire study
population in these studies), the other 7 studies found no differences in body
weight at all. It appears that both the potential benefits and downsides of
sports as a means to tackling obesity have more to do with the impact of sports
(and sport settings) on caloric intake than expenditure.
At 3.5 Years Of Age Future Obesity May Be Predicted  14 Nov
Researchers found two factors that may explain this:
the mothers’ weight around the time they gave birth and whether the mothers
smoked. These two factors were found to be much more important than the other
criteria that were studied, such as the child’s birth weight. Research adds to
the growing evidence that the perinatal environment has an important influence
on later obesity.

 Nutrition – Diet                                 
                   
Men and heavy people may outpace women and slim people
in eating speed
 9 Nov
Researchers also discovered that people with a higher
body mass index in general ate much faster than those with a lower BMI.
Further Evidence That Eating Slower Reduces Food Intake 11 Nov
Two new studies by researchers at the University of
Rhode Island are providing additional insights into the role that eating rate
plays in the amount of food one consumes. The studies found that men eat
significantly faster than women, heavier people eat faster than slimmer people,
and refined grains are consumed faster than whole grains, among other findings.

 Physical Activity –
Sedentarity                              

City kids
less likely to be active than suburban ones – density matters
28 Oct
Where houses are crammed, yards are small and there’s
more traffic, there may be no place for kids to play,” says Janssen. “Whereas
if you have a quiet cul-de-sac it becomes a playground.

Why
Kids Don’t Walk To School
| Dr. Sharma’s Obesity Notes  24 Nov
The two most commonly raised issues were concerns
about the safety of crossing streets (54%) and the availability of sidewalks
(54%). Additional factors included distance to school (46%), traffic volume
(42%), parental attitudes (27%), traffic speed (27%), neighborhood condition
(24%), and student attitudes (10%).

 Behaviour
– Consumption
                  
              
Medical News: Banning Soda in Schools Ineffective?? – MedPage Today
Although the ban significantly cut down on
student-reported access at school, about 85% of students reported having at
least one soda or other sweet drink in the prior week whether they could get
the beverages at school or not.
Development and validation of an eating norms
inventory. Americans’ lay-beliefs about appropriate eating
: Appetite  Oct
What do American adults believe about what, where,
when, how much, and how often it is appropriate to eat? Such normative beliefs
originate from family and friends through socialization processes, but they are
also influenced by governments, educational institutions, and businesses. Norms
therefore provide an important link between the social environment and
individual attitudes and behaviors.

 Industry –
Marketing
                  
                
    
Everything you need to know about the front of package
label debate
. MT marionnestle: 6 Nov