Tag Archive for 'Research'

Inflammation and obesity linked again


Regular readers of the Optimal Body Weight News & Reviews column may remember articles on the Zone Diet and the Perricone Weight Loss Diet, where the authors of these anti-inflammatory diets explained that obesity and inflammation go hand in hand. There may be differences in interpretation as to how it comes about, and the best approach to address it; but they both recognize the link between inflammation and obesity.

In both of these books, links between obesity and a number of diseases, including general fatigue, headaches, cancers and arthritis are also highlighted. Please note that while these two (Zone and Perricone) diets are discussed in this article about the link between inflammation and obesity, they are not necessarily the only two anti-inflammatory diets on the market, merely two of the more well-known weight loss programs focused on inflammation.

Now, it appears that a new study published in the April 2009 issue of “Cell Metabolism” may support at least some of these claims. While this study does not even touch on the effectiveness of any of the anti-inflammatory diets with regards to weight loss, it found clear evidence that an inflammatory chemokine (structurally related signaling proteins that are secreted by cells) called “CXCL5” rises and falls with obesity and subsequent weight loss in humans, and of course…mice.

This same inflammatory factor was already linked in previous studies to several diseases, including pulmonary disease, lung cancer, and arthritis. Now that it is also so clearly linked to obesity, it is also very likely that it may be responsible for insulin resistance that accompanies obesity.
Continue reading about the link between obesity, inflammation and weight loss.

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Stop drinking sugar-sweetened drinks and start losing weight

We will probably never know exactly what caused the current obesity epidemic in the developed world. It is in all probability the result of many different converging events and influences, rather than the result of a single issue. Some of the theories put forward in recent years to explain the sudden increase in obesity related problems since the 1970’s include the popularization of the low fat diet, the increasingly sedentary lifestyles of westerners, and also the fact that the consumption of calories in liquid form increased in parallel with the obesity epidemic.

A research study prompted by the latter theory, namely the increase in the intake of calories in liquid form, was recently published by researchers from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. The objective of this study was to determine exactly how changes in the consumption of liquid calories affect weight change among adults. The results of the study were conclusive. What you drink may be even more important than what you eat if you want to lose weight!

Obviously the researchers had to be very careful to reduce the effects of so many other variables on the weight of an adult to isolate the impact of the beverages. The study was conducted over a period of 18 months, and 810 adults participated. Measurements of dietary intake, weight and height were made at baseline, 6 months, and at 18 months. The measurement of the dietary intake of participants throughout the course of the trial was done by conducting unannounced 24 hour dietary recalls via the telephone.
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What are the Dangers and Problems of Rapid Weight Loss

Author: Donovan Baldwin

People searching for weight loss programs and diets today seem to be searching more for rapid weight loss than permanent, healthy weight loss. Unfortunately, it is a fact that quick diet weight loss programs are seldom without their dangers, and their results usually range from erratic to nonexistent.

I would advise anyone seeking to lose weight to substitute the term ‘healthy weight loss program’ for ‘rapid weight loss program’. I hope, the following short discussion will explain my position to some extent.

You, like so many others in today’s society, are concerned about losing weight. Like so many others, you are looking for some sort of rapid weight loss program or plan. Rapid weight loss, also often referred to as quick weight loss or fast weight loss, involves, as its name implies, losing weight in a short period of time. Claims of such programs often cite fantastic results in anywhere from two to seven days.

In the United States, approximately two-thirds of the adult population is overweight or obese, and hundreds of thousands of these Americans are understandably interested in rapidly losing that unwanted weight. Many simply wish to lose weight before an important event, like an upcoming vacation or a wedding, while others are willing to accept the fact that permanent, healthy weight loss is a lifetime commitment. Continue reading ‘What are the Dangers and Problems of Rapid Weight Loss’

Just when you think you know how to lose weight.


Whoever finds a single fool proof way to lose weight is guaranteed to become the richest person on earth. Unfortunately, or maybe fortunately, a one-size-fits-all super diet will probably never be discovered. If it is not enough that our bodies are so different, there are many, many other factors at play including cultural differences, lifestyle differences, socio-economic differences and taste preferences. The list of factors that can impact on weight loss success just goes on and on.

It’s really no wonder then that we are bombarded with conflicting and confusing scientific reports. It is very difficult to conduct an experiment that considers all of these variables. As a result, we are left with many reputable and conflicting scientific reports, each claiming that yet another dietary approach is the be-all and end-all for losing weight. Whether it is the Atkins or the Mediterranean Diet, the Low Fat or Low GI diet, or even Weight Watchers; the list is never-ending. It is just too easy to become a bit cynical after a while. How refreshing then, to come across a scientific study that found that most well balanced popular diets work well, irrespective of whether it is high in protein, low in fat, low in carbohydrates or any combination of these!

This study, called the “Comparison of Weight-Loss Diets with Different Compositions of Fat, Protein, and Carbohydrates” was published on February 26, 2009 in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM). Its aim was to try and put an end to the age-old debate around the question “Which type of diet is most effective for weight loss”. The research team was of the opinion that many of the conflicting scientific reports on the weight loss topic published previously were based on populations too small to be representative, and that many studies did not track the progress of participants for a long enough period to provide sufficient information for assessment.
Continue reading ‘Just when you think you know how to lose weight.’

Stevia Sweetener is All Natural Food That Replaces Sugar and Artificial Sweeteners

Author: Cliff Smith

Stevia sweetener is an all natural food that is a healthy replacement for sugar and artificial sweeteners. Formerly only approved by the FDA as a dietary supplement, Stevia can now be referred to as an all natural “food additive”. One of the biggest reasons that stevia sweetener is in the spotlight now is because of the increasingly disturbing reports that have surfaced about other sweeteners like aspartame and high fructose corn syrup. Whether you choose to only eat all natural foods or not, you may want to consider switching to stevia rather than using sugar, or the sugar substitutes currently on the market.

Stevia sweetener is gaining acceptance for several reasons. It is calorie free, helps people maintain healthy blood sugar levels, and it is totally natural. It comes from the stevia plant, which is related to all natural foods such as lettuce and chicory. Stevia is 250 to 300 times sweeter than sugar, but it does not affect blood glucose levels in the same way that sugar does. Stevia sweetener has even been recommended for diabetics in many cases and it is an excellent all natural food supplement for dieters who wish to control their cravings for sweet things. Continue reading ‘Stevia Sweetener is All Natural Food That Replaces Sugar and Artificial Sweeteners’

Book Review: The APO E Gene Diet by Pamela McDonald

By Simon Barrett
I am not really much of a diet fan, my weight has never been an issue, I have been a 148lbs dripping wet for the past 35 years. I eat whatever I want, when I want. But as Pamela McDonald explains diet is not merely a method for controlling weight, but has a significant influence on health and quality of life.The world is full of fad diets, most of which make me cringe. I am sure it cannot be so, but I seems to me that a popular one preaches the virtues of meats and fats, while certainly meat and fat are important aspects of nutrition, I can hardly imagine that living on fried bacon would be a good way to lose weight and promote good overall health. Likewise a steady diet of cabbage soup would likely become somewhat monotonous after a couple of days.

Pamela McDonald takes a different approach, there is no one size fits all diet, different people need different things. Although all humans are intrinsically composed of the same material, the building blocks, our genes, are subtlety different. In decoding our DNA researchers in recent years have found small inconsistencies in people’s DNA that make them more susceptible to specific health conditions.
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Stop Cravings and Stop Binge Eating: Advice from a Pizza Man

By Tom Venuto
www.BurnTheFat.com

In a surprising comment made during a popular UK radio show, the founder of one of the largest Pizza chains in the United States and United Kingdom told listeners not to eat too much pizza!

In an interview with host Adam Shaw on BBC’s Radio Four program, John Schnatter, the founder of Papa John’s pizza, was asked whether he was concerned about the British government’s recent actions in the fast food restaurant business to help put the brakes on obesity.

Schnatter said, “Pizza is actually healthy for you if you don’t eat too much of it. You can’t eat five or six slices but if you eat one or two slices it’s very nutritious.”

Laughing, Shaw replied, “I’m not sure your investors would want to hear you tell people, ‘don’t eat too much of our pizzas!”‘

Across the web, bloggers and tweeters have been putting in their two cents. Some say he was a little TOO honest. Others say this was either the worst PR screw up ever… or the best PR move ever (you know what they say about “bad” publicity).
Continue reading ‘Stop Cravings and Stop Binge Eating: Advice from a Pizza Man’

FDA Warning to Consumers – Tainted Weight Loss Pills

Losing weight is really difficult for most of us, so the appeal of both prescription and non-prescription weight loss products is totally understandable. Today there are so many weight loss products available on the market that it is becoming increasingly difficult to understand which products are safe and effective, and which are ineffective, or worse, very dangerous. It is not fair to write off all weight loss products and solutions as no good, as there are many products out there that can really make a big difference in your diet journey. But, and this is a big but, it is becoming more important than ever to do your research properly before you buy and use.
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The Structure House Weight Loss Plan.

It isn’t food that makes us fat, but our relationship with food. We develop and hone this relationship throughout our lives, starting from when we are babies. Not only does food satisfy our nutritional needs, but it also plays a vital part in satisfying a whole range of emotional needs. Food is such an integral part of our daily existence that it is difficult to even envisage some events without food; celebrating something or needing consolation, meeting up with family and friends or even going on holiday. The list just goes on and on. According to the Structure House philosophy everyone develops a set of expectations, habits, associations, and states of mind related to food. The sum total of these, influenced by our family dynamics, our cultural backgrounds, our individual attitudes and our tastes, is regarded by Structure House as our “relationship” with food.

Gerard J. Musante, Ph.D, one of the America’s leading experts on obesity and weight loss, is a clinical psychologist and a Clinical Fellow in the Behavior Therapy and Research Society. He served on the faculty of Duke University Medical Center, where he pioneered the behavior change approach to weight loss, and currently maintains his association with Duke University in the capacity of Consulting Professor in the Dept. of Psychiatry and Behavioral Sciences. Structure House, one of the few resident weight loss programs in the United States, was founded by Dr Musante in 1977. Dr Musante drew on his experience of over thirty years in helping thousands achieve lasting weight loss to write his book, “The Structure House Weight Loss Plan.” This book aims to provide readers with all the information and insights they would have gained had they attended the resident program at Structure House.

Continue reading ‘The Structure House Weight Loss Plan.’

Alli can help you lose 50% more weight!


A single search on the internet or even a stroll down to your local drugstore can easily overwhelm you with the sheer range of diet pills available; all promising to help you lose weight. Some of them may actually work, others really do nothing at all, and then there are those that are simply dangerous to use. In such a minefield it is very welcome and comforting to come across a weight loss pill that is FDA approved. Alli, on sale in the U.S. since June 2007, is the only over–the-counter FDA approved weight loss pill.

To dieters Alli offers more than just a weight loss pill – it is supported by a well developed online weight loss program, the “Alli 1-2-3 Start Plan” that offers education, advice and support. After you purchase Alli, the diet is tailored to your individual needs as soon as you register online and create your personal profile. You’ll be provided with feedback, customized guidance, next steps, as well as access to a variety of weight loss resources and meal plans.

The Alli nutritional plan also focuses on aspects such as your general mindset, your relationship with food and exercise and your reaction to setbacks. According to the Alli program your approach to weight loss and your new lifestyle is critical to reaching your goal weight and then maintaining it. Continue reading ‘Alli can help you lose 50% more weight!’