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November 24, 2009, 11:26 AM CT

How obese patients react to diet?

How obese patients react to diet?
he presence of increased body fat, and therefore higher levels of inflammatory substances in the blood, hinders the loss and maintenance of body weight; as shown by a research project of the University of Navarra conducted by Estbaliz Goyenechea Soto, a scientist at the School of Pharmacy.

The project, entitled "A nutrigenetic and nutrigenomic study in relation to the control of body weight and inflammation," examines how the individual genetics of obese patients can help or hinder weight loss when dieting and even influence the subsequent long term maintenance of their weight loss.

Some overweight or obese people have mutated or altered genes that initially make it difficult to lose weight and later make it easier to regain lost body weight in a period of six months or a year. This problem occurs similarly in patients who have higher levels of inflammatory substances in their blood.

This genetic predisposition, along with external and personal factors such as inadequate dietary habits or physical inactivity, predispose patients to obesity and the complications that arise from it (diabetes, hypercholesterolemia and high blood pressure) which in turn increase cardiovascular risk.

The future: customized diets

The study, conducted by the Department of Food Sciences, Physiology and Toxicology has provided new data on the genetic and plasma biomarkers that predict the response of obese patients to specific diets. The goal is to develop customized therapeutic strategies in the near future based on the genetic characteristics of each person.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


November 24, 2009, 11:22 AM CT

What makes obese people develop diabetes?

What makes obese people develop diabetes?
Obesity is a major risk factor for diabetes.
A number of people who are overweight or obese develop insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes at some stage in their lives. A European research team has now discovered that obese people have large amounts of the molecule CXCL5, produced by certain cells in fatty tissue.

The main risk factors for type 2 diabetes are obesity and a sedentary lifestyle. The biomedical community has known for a number of years that substances produced by fatty tissue are responsible for the link between obesity and diabetes. "Chronic inflammation of the adipose tissue, which is characteristic of obese people, is a crucial stage in the development of insulin resistence and type 2 diabetes", Lluis Fajas, main author of the study and a researcher at the Institute of Health and Medical Research (Inserm) in France, told SINC.

The results of this newly released study show that serum levels of a chemokine molecule called CXCL5, produced by certain adipose tissue cells, appear at much high levels in the tissues of obese people than in those of individuals with normal weight. This has helped Lluis Fajas's research team to come to a biomedically relevant conclusion: "The CXCL5 molecule helps cause insulin resistance and type 2 diabetes".

The most important part of this study, reported in the journal Cell Metabolism, is the discovery that an experimental therapy aimed at inhibiting the action of CXCL5 can help to protect obese mice from develping type 2 diabetes. "If these studies can be confirmed in humans, this therapy would represent a fundamental improvement in the quality of life of obese individuals", the researcher concludes.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


November 13, 2009, 8:16 AM CT

Exercising up to the end of pregnancy

Exercising up to the end of pregnancy
Contrary to more conservative customs, exercising up to the end of pregnancy has no harmful effect on the weight or size of the foetus. This is what has been indicated in a study carried out by scientists of the Universidad Politcnica de Madrid (Polytechnic University of Madrid), which also shows the positive relationship between the weight of sedentary mothers before pregnancy and the body size of their babies. The conclusions appear in the International Journal of Obesity

"Partaking in low-level physical activity has beneficial effects on materno-foetal health". These findings have recently been reported in the International Journal of Obesity and highlight the benefits for the health of the baby and the mother when a physically-active lifestyle is maintained throughout pregnancy.

"An exercise regime carried out during the second and third trimester of pregnancy does not harm the health of the foetus", Jonatan R. Ruiz, researcher at the Karolinska Institute, Sweden, and principal author of this study, who has coordinated a team from the Polytechnic University of Madrid in collaboration with the Swedish centre, explains to SINC.

160 healthy women between the ages of 25 and 35 participated in the study, all of whom had sedentary habits and no risk of premature birth. Of this group of women, half followed an exercise regime under the supervision of experts in Physical Activity and Sports Science in collaboration with the Gynaecology and Obstetrics Unit of Hospital Severo Ochoa in Madrid.........

Posted by: Emily      Read more         Source


November 10, 2009, 8:30 AM CT

Making ice cream a functional food

Making ice cream a functional food
A comfort food, a tasty treat, an indulgence ice cream conjures feelings of happiness and satisfaction for millions. Ice cream scientists at the University of Missouri have discovered ways to make ice cream tastier and healthier and have contributed to ice cream development and manufacturing for more than a century. Today, MU scientists are working to make ice cream into a functional food, adding nutrients such as fiber, antioxidants and pro-biotics to premium ice cream.

"The idea of putting a functional ingredient into a food instead of just using the nutrients found in the food naturally takes a multi-functional approach," said Ingolf Gruen, MU professor of food chemistry and ice cream researcher in the College of Agriculture, Food and Natural Resources. "Food provides calories and comfort people want to indulge. We're working on making ice cream satisfying and healthy".

Adding nutrients such as pro-biotics, which are already found in some dairy products, and fiber to ice cream can improve digestive health. A number of diseases are caused by inflammation that starts in the intestines, Gruen said. Improving digestive health with functional foods might reduce that inflammation. Eventhough functional foods have health benefits, there are a number of challenges to adding nutrients to ice cream.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


November 4, 2009, 8:11 AM CT

Enjoying the bounty of colorful fruits and vegetable

Enjoying the bounty of colorful fruits and vegetable
Hoping to keep the flu at bay? A strong immune system helps. Enjoying the bounty of colorful fruits and vegetables available right now can be an important step toward supporting your family's immune system this cold/flu season.

In addition to vitamins, minerals and fiber, fruits and vegetables contain phytonutrients, believed to come from the com-pounds that give these foods their vibrant colors. These phytonutrients provide a wide range of health benefits, includ-ing supporting a healthy immune system.

A newly released study, America's Phytonutrient Report, found eight in 10 Americans are missing out on the health benefits of a diet rich in colorful fruits and veggies, resulting in a phytonutrient gap. The report looked at fruit and vegetable consumption in five color categories, specifically green, red, white, blue/purple and yellow/orange, and the phytonutrients found in each color category.

Eating a variety of colorful fruits and vegetables is one way to help keep you and your family healthy. Foods in the red category are particularly helpful to our immune systems, in addition to supporting heart health. Tomatoes, pomegranate, red cabbage, cranberries, even pink grapefruit provide the phytonutrients lycopene and ellagic acid.

The health benefits of foods in the yellow/orange category support a health immune function tooalong with vision and heart health. And they help maintain skin hydrationimportant as we head into these cold, dry months. These foods pro-vide beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, lutein, quercetin and other phytonutrients that can be converted into Vitamin A. Deli-cious and nutritious yellow/orange fruits and vegetables available now include: carrots, squash, sweet potatoes and pi-neapple.........

Posted by: Mark      Read more         Source


November 4, 2009, 8:02 AM CT

Do you eat your meal quickly?

Do you eat your meal quickly?
As per a newly released study accepted for publication in The Endocrine Society's Journal of Clinical Endocrinology & Metabolism (JCEM), eating a meal quickly, as in comparison to slowly, curtails the release of hormones in the gut that induce feelings of being full. The decreased release of these hormones, can often lead to overeating.

"Most of us have heard that eating fast can lead to food overconsumption and obesity, and in fact some findings based on observation have supported this notion," said Alexander Kokkinos, MD, PhD, of Laiko General Hospital in Athens Greece and main author of the study. "Our study provides a possible explanation for the relationship between speed eating and overeating by showing that the rate at which someone eats may impact the release of gut hormones that signal the brain to stop eating".

In the last few years, research regarding gut hormones, such as peptide YY (PYY) and glucagon-like peptide (GLP-1), has shown that their release after a meal acts on the brain and induces satiety and meal termination. Until now, concentrations of appetite-regulating hormones have not been examined in the context of different rates of eating.

In this study, subjects consumed the same test meal, 300ml of ice-cream, at different rates. Scientists took blood samples for the measurement of glucose, insulin, plasma lipids and gut hormones before the meal and at 30 minute intervals after the beginning of eating, until the end of the session, 210 minutes later. Scientists observed that subjects who took the full 30 minutes to finish the ice cream had higher concentrations of PYY and GLP-1 and also tended to have a higher fullness rating.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


November 4, 2009, 7:57 AM CT

Consumption Of Processed And Fried Foods

Consumption Of Processed And Fried Foods
Scientists from Mount Sinai School of Medicine report that cutting back on the consumption of processed and fried foods, which are high in toxins called Advanced Glycation End products (AGEs), can reduce inflammation and actually help restore the body's natural defenses regardless of age or health status. These benefits are present even without changing caloric or nutrient intake.

The findings, reported in the October/recent issue of the Journal of Clinical Endocrinology and Metabolism, provide a simple dietary intervention that could result in weight loss and have significant impact on several epidemic diseases, including diabetes, heart disease, and kidney disease.

The findings are the result of a clinical study involving over 350 people which was conducted in collaboration with, and with support from, the National Institute on Aging (NIA). The study builds on earlier research conducted in animal models that demonstrated the effective prevention of these diseases and even the extension of lifespan by consuming a reduced AGE diet.

"What is noteworthy about our findings is that reduced AGE consumption proved to be effective in all study participants, including healthy persons and persons who have a chronic condition such as kidney disease," said the study's main author Helen Vlassara, MD, Professor and Director of the Division of Experimental Diabetes and Aging at Mount Sinai School of Medicine.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


October 28, 2009, 6:21 AM CT

Exercise for lymphoma patients

Exercise for lymphoma patients
A healthy dose of exercise is good medicine, even for lymphoma patients receiving chemotherapy, University of Alberta scientists have found.

The Healthy Exercise for Lymphoma Patients (HELP) trial, a three-year study led by Kerry Courneya, Canada Research Chair in physical activity and cancer in the Faculty of Physical Education and Recreation, observed that a regimen of aerobic exercise training produced significant improvements in physical functioning and overall quality of life benefits in patients with lymphoma.

Scientists recruited 122 patients with Hodgkin's and non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, then stratified participants by disease type and therapy status; whether they were undergoing chemotherapy at the time or receiving no therapys. Participants were randomly assigned to an exercise program designed to maximize cardiovascular fitness or to usual care, which did not include an exercise component.

Exercisers trained three times a week for 12 weeks and were encouraged to stay the course with behavioural support techniques that included perks like free parking, a well-equipped gym, flexible exercise schedules, variation in exercises, follow-up phone calls reminders and positive reinforcement by staff.

Lymphoma patients who received the exercise intervention reported significantly improved physical functioning, overall quality of life, less fatigue, increased happiness, less depression and an improvement in lean body mass. Cardiovascular fitness in the exercise group improved by over 20 per cent. The group receiving chemotherapy benefited as much as the group that was off therapys.........

Posted by: Janet      Read more         Source


October 26, 2009, 7:45 AM CT

Binge eating trends

Binge eating trends
Existing research shows that rates of binge eating among adult women is virtually identical across race. However, among college age women, it's a different story: Caucasian women are more apt to exhibit binge eating behaviors than African American women, as per a research studypresented at this month's annual scientific meeting of the Obesity Society.

"We are trying to figure out when the diet trajectory changes, and when it is that African-Americans start to exhibit these behaviors. It's important to look at the eating habits of this group as they may contribute to early onset weight gain and obesity," said Melissa Napolitano, clinical psychology expert at the Center for Obesity Research and Education and associate professor of kinesiology in the College of Health Professions.

In the study, 715 female college students completed an on-line survey about health habits, behaviors and attitudes. Each woman self-reported her height and weight. Answers were then in comparison to the Eating Disorder Diagnostic Scale, a questionnaire that is used to diagnose a variety of eating disorders, and the Binge Eating Scale, to gauge the severity of binge eating symptoms.

Binge Eating Disorder is classified by eating amounts of food larger than most people would consider normal within a 2-hour period; a sense of loss of control during these eating periods; eating past the point of feeling comfortably full; and feelings of embarrassment, depression, anxiety or guilt after eating.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source


October 22, 2009, 7:19 AM CT

Obesity prevention efforts in El Paso

Obesity prevention efforts in El Paso
Researchers at the Michael & Susan Dell Center for Advancement of Healthy Living at The University of Texas School of Public Health Austin Regional Campus found that obesity prevention efforts in the El Paso region were the most effective in Texas in decreasing the prevalence of childhood obesity.

Deanna Hoelscher, Ph.D., director of the Michael & Susan Dell Center for Healthy Living, examined regional changes of child obesity from 2000-2002 to 2004-2005, after the implementation of several statewide policies and programs in Texas. The study found a 13 percent decrease in the prevalence of obesity among El Paso 4th graders.

"Data from the El Paso region show us that obesity prevention efforts, when implemented on a broad scale, can be successful," said Hoelscher, professor at the UT School of Public Health. This is one of the first reports of a population-wide decrease in child obesity prevalence levels in 4th grade children in the El Paso region of Texas. Research results from the SPAN (Schools Physical Activity and Nutrition) study are published in the recent issue of Obesity.

The recent national obesity rates have shown no significant changes in child obesity during the last few years, with 16.3 percent of U.S. children ages 2-19 currently classified as obese, according to the latest National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey results. Although a decrease in child obesity was found in smaller controlled studies, according to Hoelscher, the SPAN study is the first to document a regional decrease in the prevalence of child obesity due to implementation of community and school health programs in a 'natural' experiment.........

Posted by: JoAnn      Read more         Source



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Did you know?
Exercise can't stop the aging process, but experts at Baylor College of Medicine in Houston say that for the elderly, whether it's weight training, walking, swimming or biking, 30 minutes of exercise three to five times a week is a good prescription for aging."It's never too late to start exercising," said Dr. Robert Roush, an associate professor of medicine-geriatrics at BCM. "Being physically active and exercising regularly can help prevent or delay some diseases and disabilities as people age.".

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