Obesity genes probably didn't evolve to help us survive famine

Genes that helped our ancestors store fat in times of famine may have been useful, but whether they cursed future generations with a predisposition toward obesity is a little more controversial. This popular "thrifty gene ...

New research links common RNA modification to obesity

An international research team has discovered that a pervasive human RNA modification provides the physiological underpinning of the genetic regulatory process that contributes to obesity and type II diabetes.

Scientists uncover new DNA role in modifying gene function

For years, scientists have thought of DNA as a passive blueprint capable only of producing specific proteins through RNA transcription. Now, research led by scientists from the Florida campus of The Scripps Research Institute ...

Study sheds new light on organic fruit and vegetables

(PhysOrg.com) -- Organic fruit and vegetables contain on average 12 per cent more health-promoting compounds than conventionally grown produce, scientists at Newcastle University have found.

New low-calorie rice could help cut rising obesity rates

Scientists have developed a new, simple way to cook rice that could cut the number of calories absorbed by the body by more than half, potentially reducing obesity rates, which is especially important in countries where the ...

Are animal traits the result of behavioral epigenetics?

A plant that is unremarkable in one environment becomes an invasive species in another, pushing through house foundations and sprouting up through roads. A house sparrow that's a perfectly charming resident of the English ...

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Obesity

Obesity is a medical condition in which excess body fat has accumulated to the extent that it may have an adverse effect on health, leading to reduced life expectancy. Body mass index (BMI), which compares weight and height, is used to define a person as overweight (pre-obese) when their BMI is between 25 kg/m2 and 30 kg/m2 and obese when it is greater than 30 kg/m2.

Obesity is associated with many diseases, particularly heart disease, type 2 diabetes, breathing difficulties during sleep, certain types of cancer, and osteoarthritis. Obesity is most commonly caused by a combination of excessive dietary calories, lack of physical activity, and genetic susceptibility, though a limited number of cases are due solely to genetics, medical reasons or psychiatric illness.

The primary treatment for obesity is dieting and physical exercise. If this fails, anti-obesity drugs may be taken to reduce appetite or inhibit fat absorption. In severe cases, surgery is performed or an intragastric balloon is placed to reduce stomach volume and or bowel length, leading to earlier satiation and reduced ability to absorb nutrients from food.

Obesity is a leading preventable cause of death worldwide, with increasing prevalence in adults and children, and authorities view it as one of the most serious public health problems of the 21st century. Obesity is stigmatized in the modern Western world, though it has been perceived as a symbol of wealth and fertility at other times in history, and still is in many parts of Africa.

This text uses material from Wikipedia, licensed under CC BY-SA