evidence-based blog of Filippo Dibari

Posts Tagged ‘obesity’

Food systems and diets: facing the challenges of the 21st century

In Over-nutrition, Under-nutrition on September 27, 2016 at 7:26 am

from the webpage of the Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition

(download the report here)

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The Global Panel on Agriculture and Food Systems for Nutrition published its new Report, Food systems and diets: Facing the challenges of the 21st century on the 23rd September 2016.

This evidence-based Report is designed to help policymakers make their food systems more supportive of high quality diets.

The need for action on malnutrition

Poor diet is the number one risk factor driving the world’s disease burden.

Three billion people from 193 countries now have low quality diets and nearly half of all countries are experiencing the simultaneous problem of serious levels of undernutrition, overweight and obesity. Yet our global understanding about the quality of our diets is limited.

The Report

Using modelling and trend analysis, the Report generates a new understanding of diets and food systems, and how they could change by 2030.

The analysis shows that if current trends continue, by 2030 nearly half of the world’s adult population will be overweight or obese, up from one third today. The poorest countries are not immune to these trends.

It also shows how these trends have enormous economic impacts at the macro and micro levels, as well major consequences for mortality and morbidity. For example, at the macro level, cost are estimated to represent an annual loss of 10% global GDP, equivalent to a global financial crisis every year.

Drawing on over 250 data sources and peer-reviewed articles, the Report lists a series of recommendations for policymakers in low and middle income countries through a ‘Call to Action’.

The Report presents evidence showing that the risk that poor diets pose to mortality and morbidity is now greater than the combined risks of unsafe sex, alcohol, drug and tobacco use.

But, as the Report shows that there are many opportunities for action within the food system.

A Call to Action

This Report identifies decisions that policymakers need to take in the coming decade, particularly for women and children, to invest in effective policies to reduce all forms of malnutrition, repositioning food systems from feeding people to nourishing people.

Actions which go beyond agriculture to encompass trade, the environment and health, harnessing the power of the private sector and empowering consumers to demand better diets.

Enhancing the ability of food systems to deliver high quality diets is a choice that is well within the grasp of policymakers.  It is a choice that will help achieve the SDG goal of ending malnutrition in all its forms by 2030. It is a choice that will reap benefits for decades to come, for all people, in all countries.

Only a response on the scale and commitment used to tackle HIV/AIDS and malaria will be sufficient to meet the challenge, particularly in low- and middle-income countries.

“This Report makes clear the enormous challenge posed by malnutrition and poor diets generally to the detriment of many millions of individuals and indeed whole economies.”

Sir John Beddington, Co-Chair of the Global Panel, and former UK Chief Scientific Advisor

That Sugar Film (2014)

In Over-nutrition on September 10, 2016 at 6:16 am

Damon Gameau embarks on an experiment to document the effects of a high sugar diet on a healthy body.

Chile declares war on junk food

In Over-nutrition on June 27, 2016 at 7:06 pm
Aljazeera – Politics & Law

02:22Jun 26, 2016

Chileans are ranked as the number one consumers of junk food. Chile is also in the top three in the world for obesity. Now government leaders are trying to change people’s poor eating habits by changing the law.

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Nutrition — Institute for Health and Consumer Protection – JRC-IHCP, European Commission

In Over-nutrition, Uncategorized on August 20, 2014 at 12:19 pm

From the EU-JRC web site

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The European Commission’s Health and Consumer General Directorate (DG SANCO) states on its website that

“in Europe today, 6 of the 7 biggest risk factors for premature death

– blood pressure, cholesterol, Body Mass Index, inadequate fruit and vegetable intake,

physical inactivity and alcohol abuse –

relate to how we eat, drink and move”.

Eating, drinking and physical activity are everyday tasks that are prone to intervention, hence a major challenge is how to promote and implement changes in these activities that will result in a better health population-wide.

In this context, the Institute for Health and Consumer Protection (IHCP) is providing an expert base of knowledge to tackle nutritional and health issues within the context of EU Health and Consumer Policies.

The Institute’s goal is to provide independent solid scientific advice to European Commission Services, EU Institutions and EU Member States in the field of nutritional science, and particularly in the implementation of the European strategy on nutrition, overweight, and obesity-related health issues.

Scientists at the IHCP are reviewing state-of-the-art scientific developments in nutritional science, and their applicability and relevance for decision making in the areas of public health policy and nutritional recommendations.

Exploring the paradox: double burden of malnutrition in rural South Africa

In Over-nutrition, Under-nutrition on April 18, 2014 at 7:11 am

by Kimani-Murage EW.

Glob Health Action. 2013 Jan 24;6:19249

(download)

Abstract

BACKGROUND:

This article is a review of the PhD thesis by Elizabeth Kimani-Murage that explores the double burden of malnutrition in rural South Africa. This is in the context of a worryingly rapid increase in obesity and obesity-related diseases in low- and middle-income countries (LMICs) including South Africa, and in the wake of on-going nutrition transition and lifestyle changes in these countries.

OBJECTIVE:

To understand the profiles of malnutrition among children and adolescents in a poor, high HIV prevalent, transitional society in a middle-income country.

METHODS:

A cross-sectional growth survey was conducted in 2007 targeting 4,000 children and adolescents aged 1-20 years. In addition, HIV testing was carried out on children aged 1-5 years and Tanner pubertal assessment among adolescents aged 9-20 years.

RESULTS:

The study shows stunting at an early age and adolescent obesity, particularly among girls, that co-exists in the same socio-geographic population. The study also shows that HIV is an independent modifiable risk factor for poor nutritional outcomes in children and makes a significant contribution to nutritional outcomes at the individual level. Significant predictors of undernutrition at an early age, documented at individual, household, and community levels, include child’s HIV status, age and birth weight, maternal age, age of household head, and area of residence. Significant predictors of overweight/obesity and risk for metabolic disease during adolescence, documented at individual and household levels include child’s age, sex, and pubertal development, household-level food security, socio-economic status, and household head’s highest education level.

CONCLUSIONS:

The combination of early stunting and adolescent obesity raises critical concerns in the wake of the rising public health importance of metabolic diseases in LMICs. This is because, both paediatric obesity and adult short stature are risk factors for metabolic syndrome and metabolic diseases in adulthood. Clearly, policies and interventions to address malnutrition in this and other transitional societies need to be double-pronged and gender-sensitive.

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Effects of Ramadan fasting on cardiovascular risk factors: a prospective observational study

In Over-nutrition on September 24, 2012 at 3:47 pm

by Mohsen Nematy, Maryam Alinezhad-Namaghi, Masoud mahdavi Rashed, Mostafa Mozhdehifard, Seyedeh Sania Sajjadi, Saeed Akhlaghi, Maryam Sabery, Seyed Amir R Mohajeri, Neda Shalaey, Mohsen Moohebati and Abdolreza Norouzy

Nutrition Journal 2012, 11:69 – Published: 10 September 2012

(download the provisional entire paper)

Abstract (provisional)

Background

Previous research has shown that Ramadan fasting has beneficial effects on cardiovascular risk factors, however there are controversies. In the present study, the effect of Ramadan fasting on cardiovascular risk factors has been investigated.

Method

This is a prospective observational study that was carried out in a group of patients with at least one cardiovascular risk factor (including history of documented previous history of either coronary artery disease (CAD), metabolic syndrome or cerebro-vascular disease in past 10 y). Eighty two volunteers including 38 male and 44 female, aged 29–70 y, mean 54.0 [PLUS-MINUS SIGN] 10 y, with a previous history of either coronary artery disease, metabolic syndrome or cerebro-vascular disease were recruited. Subjects attended the metabolic unit after at least 10 h fasting, before and after Ramadan who were been fasting for at least 10 days. A fasting blood sample was obtained, blood pressure was measured and body mass index (BMI) was calculated. Lipids profile, fasting blood sugar (FBS) and insulin, homocysteine (hcy), high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hs-CRP) and complete blood count (CBC) were analyzed on all blood samples.

Results

A significant improvement in 10 years coronary heart disease risk (based on Framingham risk score) was found (13.0 [PLUS-MINUS SIGN] 8 before Ramadan and 10.8 [PLUS-MINUS SIGN]7 after Ramadan, P <0.001, t test).There was a significant higher HDL-c, WBC, RBC and platelet count (PLT), and lower plasma cholesterol, triglycerides, LDL-c, VLDL-c, systolic blood pressure, body mass index and waist circumference after Ramadan (P <0.05, t test). The changes in FBS, insulin,Homeostasis Model Assessment Insulin Resistance (HOMA-IR), hcy, hs-CRP and diastolic blood pressure before and after Ramadan were not significant (P >0.05, t test).

Conclusions

This study shows a significant improvement in 10 years coronary heart disease risk score and other cardiovascular risk factors such as lipids profile, systolic blood pressure, weight, BMI and waist circumference in subjects with a previous history of cardiovascular disease.

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Unexpected evidence: “Hunter-Gatherer Energetics and Human Obesity”

In Over-nutrition on September 21, 2012 at 9:31 am

Herman Pontzer, David A. Raichlen, Brian M. Wood,Audax Z. P. Mabulla, Susan B. Racette, Frank W. Marlowe

PLoS ONE 7(7) 2012 

(download the entire paper)

Abstract

Western lifestyles differ markedly from those of our hunter-gatherer ancestors, and these differences in diet and activity level are often implicated in the global obesity pandemic. However, few physiological data for hunter-gatherer populations are available to test these models of obesity.

In this study, we used the doubly-labeled water method to measure total daily energy expenditure (kCal/day) in Hadza hunter-gatherers to test whether foragers expend more energy each day than their Western counterparts.

As expected, physical activity level, PAL, was greater among Hadza foragers than among Westerners. Nonetheless, average daily energy expenditure of traditional Hadza foragers was no different than that of Westerners after controlling for body size. The metabolic cost of walking (kcal kg−1 m−1) and resting (kcal kg−1 s−1) were also similar among Hadza and Western groups.

The similarity in metabolic rates across a broad range of cultures challenges current models of obesity suggesting that Western lifestyles lead to decreased energy expenditure. We hypothesize that human daily energy expenditure may be an evolved physiological trait largely independent of cultural differences.

 

Find more about obesity on this blog.

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The evolution of human adiposity and obesity: where did it all go wrong?

In Over-nutrition on August 22, 2012 at 7:57 pm

by Jonathan C. K. Wells

Dis. Model. Mech.September 2012, vol. 5; no. 5; pages: 595-607

(download the entire paper)

Abstract

Because obesity is associated with diverse chronic diseases, little attention has been directed to the multiple beneficial functions of adipose tissue.

Adipose tissue not only provides energy for growth, reproduction and immune function, but also secretes and receives diverse signaling molecules that coordinate energy allocation between these functions in response to ecological conditions. Importantly, many relevant ecological cues act on growth and physique, with adiposity responding as a counterbalancing risk management strategy.

The large number of individual alleles associated with adipose tissue illustrates its integration with diverse metabolic pathways. However, phenotypic variation in age, sex, ethnicity and social status is further associated with different strategies for storing and using energy. Adiposity therefore represents a key means of phenotypic flexibility within and across generations, enabling a coherent life-history strategy in the face of ecological stochasticity.

The sensitivity of numerous metabolic pathways to ecological cues makes our species vulnerable to manipulative globalized economic forces. The aim of this article is to understand how human adipose tissue biology interacts with modern environmental pressures to generate excess weight gain and obesity.

The disease component of obesity might lie not in adipose tissue itself, but in its perturbation by our modern industrialized niche.

Efforts to combat obesity could be more effective if they prioritized ‘external’ environmental change rather than attempting to manipulate ‘internal’ biology through pharmaceutical or behavioral means.

Find other posts related to obesity on this blog.

 

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Meditation, and weight management in women: a randomized controlled trial

In Over-nutrition on July 31, 2012 at 6:24 pm

The effect of a mindful restaurant eating intervention on weight management in women

Timmerman GMBrown A. School of Nursing, The University of Texas at Austin, Austin, TX 78701, USA. gtimmerman@mail.utexas.edu

J Nutr Educ Behav. 2012 Jan-Feb;44(1):22-8.

Abstract

OBJECTIVE: To evaluate the effect of a Mindful Restaurant Eating intervention on weight management.

DESIGN: Randomized control trial.

SETTING: Greater metropolitan area of Austin, Texas.

PARTICIPANTS: Women (n = 35) 40-59 years old who eat out at least 3 times per week.

INTERVENTION: The intervention, using 6 weekly 2-hour, small group sessions, focused on reducing calorie and fat intake when eating out through education, behavior change strategies, and mindful eating meditations.

MAIN OUTCOME MEASURES: Weight, waist circumference, self-reported daily calorie and fat intake, self-reported calories and fat consumed when eating out, emotional eating, diet related self-efficacy, and barriers to weight management when eating out.

ANALYSIS: General linear models examined change from baseline to final endpoint to determine differences in outcomes between the intervention and control group.

RESULTS: Participants in the intervention group lost significantly more weight (P =.03), had lower average daily caloric (P = .002) and fat intake (P = .001), had increased diet-related self-efficacy (P = .02), and had fewer barriers to weight management when eating out (P = .001).

CONCLUSIONS AND IMPLICATIONS: Mindful Restaurant Eating intervention was effective in promoting weight management in perimenopausal women.

IOM: obesity prevention InphoGraphic. Finally! Well done!

In Over-nutrition on June 4, 2012 at 4:28 pm

Under pressure because of the US obesity pandemic, the Institute of Medicine has released a large number of documents which are often hard to digest for lay public. Fortunately this is not the case for the latest product: an InphoGraphic. Disseminate as much as possible.

 

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