Obesity is a very hot topic in our country, because 1 out of 3 people are now considered obese. Childhood Obesity is on the rise! Do these people just grossly overeat, or is there something else going on? If current research is correct, would we be a nation growing larger? If we were eating the way that the food pyramid suggests, would another 1/3 of our nation be overweight as well? There are some serious problems going on, that are leading to this epidemic.
Here is a list of sobering overweight statistics and obese statistics.
Interesting new research is going on:
In 2007, researchers found that 30% of obese people have a common respiratory virus that might turn adult stem cells under their skin into fat cells when they become infected. The theory is that perhaps, the virus and lack of exercise could lead to people becoming overweight.
In 2008, researchers concluded that fat cells in your body remain constant despite your weight fluctuations. About 10% of fat cells die, and regenerate yearly. Researchers are trying to find a drug that will inhibit this regeneration.
Fat, named Adipose tissue, used to be considered, to be a blob with no known power. Now, scientists consider this adipose tissue as a type of endocrine organ or gland (similar to the thyroid or pituitary gland), that produces key hormones that are released into your bloodstream. One of the main hormones, Leptin, is extremely important in controlling hunger. Could leptin production be the cause of the problem, by leaving obese people hungrier than the rest of us?
Researchers have shown that most lean adults have about 40 billion fat cells. Some researchers believe that obese people actually could have 2 to 3 times that number. Perhaps the body can reach a point where it sends out a signal to grow more fat cells, and that your fat cell number is not constant. Research in the area of fat cells is an ongoing topic, but whether or not fat cells can divide and multiply will be huge.
An interesting consideration, is how cells actually store fat. In a very simplistic explanation, fat storage is tied to your blood sugar levels. When your blood sugar rises, your pancreas produces a hormone called insulin, that has the job of taking the sugar and fatty acids into your cells, and storing them. This process leaves some very interesting questions.
If this is how things work, then why don’t most diets stress the importance of keeping very strict control over your blood sugar? You could begin to see why keeping your carbohydrates under control, in a lower carbohydrate diet, or low-glycemic diet, might hold some promise. You might even need to eat real foods, and limit almost all processed foods. Eating much smaller meals more often, could be effective for many people.
Could it be, that many of us could not eat the way that the food pyramid suggests, and keep our weight under control? What will big companies that produce processed foods do when research shows that their products are leading us to be overweight? Will they advertise their products as healthy, when they know that they are not? Entire sections of supermarkets will need to be avoided if you want to be healthy!
At this point, there are many questions that still need to be answered. I would encourage anyone who is obese, to consider trying the South Beach Diet, a Low-Glycemic diet, or a Diabetic diet meal plan, where carbohydrates are kept under control, and healthy carbohydrates, and healthy foods, like fruits, vegetables, and healthy grains, and beans are encouraged. I believe most people with weight problems, should not be worrying about calories, but carbohydrate control, and healthy eating that limits all processed carbohydrates, and products containing sugar.
Lifestyle Solutions, will give you daily tips, to help incorporate healthy foods into your diet, and help you develop healthy diet habits! This will not only benefit you, but will benefit your family, and help prevent your children from suffering from childhood obesity.