Allison, PhD, director of the University of Alabama at Birmingham clinical nutrition research center, and his colleagues. But the evidence that these are the main causes of obesity is "largely circumstantial," Allison and colleagues say. Obesity researchers should broaden their horizon, they argue. So the researchers propose 10 other explanations for obesity, which are also supported by circumstantial evidence.
Abstract The obesity epidemic is a global issue and shows no signs of abating, while the cause of this epidemic remains unclear. Marketing practices of energy-dense foods and institutionally-driven declines in physical activity are the alleged perpetrators for the epidemic, despite a lack of solid evidence to demonstrate their causal role.
While both may contribute to obesity, we call attention to their unquestioned dominance in program funding and public efforts to reduce obesity, and propose several alternative putative contributors that would benefit from equal consideration and attention.
Evidence for microorganisms, epigenetics, increasing maternal age, greater fecundity among people with higher adiposity, assortative mating, sleep debt, endocrine disruptors, pharmaceutical iatrogenesis, reduction in variability of ambient temperatures, and intrauterine and intergenerational effects, as contributing factors to the obesity epidemic are reviewed herein.
While the evidence is strong for some contributors such as pharmaceutical-induced weight gain, it is still emerging for other reviewed factors. Considering the role of such putative etiological factors of obesity may lead to comprehensive, cause specific, and effective strategies for prevention and treatment of this global epidemic.
Introduction The Prevalence of Obesity The prevalence of obesity has increased substantially since the midth century. Although there seems to have been an accelerated rate of increase somewhere aroundat least in the United States Baskin et al.
Within the United States, this increase has occurred in every age, race, sex and socioeconomic group. Although recent evidence suggests that the prevalence of obesity may have begun to asymptote within some segments of the U.
Obesity has not only increased in the United States but also seems to have increased in virtually every country where detailed data are available Caballero, Reasons for this increase are incompletely understood Keith et al.
That is, when we question the strength of the evidence of the big two as contributors, or certainly the chief and near sole contributors to the obesity epidemic, we are not questioning the importance of energy intake and energy expenditure, including physical activity energy expenditure in influencing obesity levels.
Our questioning of the big two stems from two points. First, the evidence supporting various elements of the big two as contributors to individual or population levels of obesity is often quite weak. Second, even though some elements of the big two do very likely play some role in influencing obesity levels, we believe that an unquestioned assumption of their preeminence has led to the possibly ill-advised expenditure of public effort and funds on programs aimed at reducing population levels of obesity that and has also reduced the exploration of other potential causes and the alternative obesity reduction programs that might stem from their identification.
The big two seem to be accorded special status in many dialogues and writings on obesity such that our usual healthy scientific skepticism is held back when considering them. Perhaps this is because the Big Two as explanations for obesity appeal to a prevalent anti-corporate sentiment Crossley, or perhaps because they have an intuitive appeal based, in part, on their simplicity and the fact that they require little specialized knowledge to comprehend and deal with easily observable aspects of life with which all of us are familiar.
Regardless of the cause, as scientists, we should retain our skepticism toward all hypotheses and our open-mindedness to new hypotheses.
What are some of the specific facts that enhance our skepticism of the big two as near-omnipotent causes of the obesity epidemic? We make no pretext of offering an exhaustive consideration of evidence for or against the big two, but rather highlight a few bullet points that reinforce our skepticism.
Restaurant dining and fast-food restaurant dining in particular have been considered as major contributors to the obesity epidemic.
Yet, Anderson and Matsa conducted an analysis of a nationally representative sample of 3-day food records and found that while diners at fast food restaurants ate roughly — kcal more during restaurant meals, they largely compensated by eating less at other occasions such that the net increase in energy intake associated with restaurant dining was extremely small i.
Some argue that a reduction in the frequency of physical education PE is a major contributor to obesity. Yet the evidence that PE frequency has decreased is itself questionable Sturm, and some studies in children report that the frequency of participation in sport has increased Salmon et al Regardless of changes in frequency of PE offerings or participation, much evidence suggests that standard PE classes have no appreciable impact on obesity levels Cawley et al.
Sidewalks and the Built Environment. HFCS consumption but not necessarily fructose per se has increased substantially in the last several decades and has been speculated to be a contributor to the obesity epidemic Bray et al ; Welsh et al Yet, a critical review Forshee et al.
Vending machines have been discussed as a threat to childhood overweight and obesity and changes in school policy have been made to reflect this view Sothern et al Yet little to no extant evidence indicates that vending machines have contributed to the problem Faith et al.
These are just a few examples and we do not wish to imply that any of the hypothesized influences described in the bullet points above merit being summarily dismissed.The obesity epidemic is spreading to low-income and middle-income countries as a result of new dietary habits and sedentary ways of life, fuelling chronic diseases and premature mortality.
Dec 11, · A Nasty, Nafta-Related Surprise: Mexico’s Soaring Obesity. Few predicted when Mexico joined the free-trade deal that it would transform the . Jensen MD, Ryan DH, Apovian CM, et al, for the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association Task Force on Practice Guidelines; Obesity Society.
AHA/ACC/TOS guideline for the management of overweight and obesity in adults: a report of the American College of Cardiology/American Heart Association .
The prevalence of obesity is increasing in all age groups. According to a census and the projection made by the United Nations ( revision), the elderly constitute % of the Indian population, and by all indications 21% of the Indian population will be 60 years and above by The consumption of sugar-sweetened beverages has been linked to risks for obesity, diabetes, and heart disease ; therefore, a compelling case can be made for the need for reduced consumption of.
Apr 24, · Excess body weight: A major health issue in America. Modern life in America has led many people to eat more unhealthy foods, eat bigger food portions, and be less active.
Some of the same health problems affecting obese adults can also affect obese children. These include heart disease risk factors such as high cholesterol .