February 1, 2017
So fat is fat, and all fat is bad, right?
“Not all fat is equal,” says Professor Alexander Pfeifer from the Institute of Pharmacology and Toxicology of the University Hospital Bonn. Apparently, according to recent research out of University of Bonn, researchers have found a way to use what is called “brown fat” to burn energy from food and stimulate weight loss.
Humans actually have two different kinds of fat: white fat (which is the bad fat that makes our “love handles” that we want to get rid of) and brown fat which acts like a desirable heater to convert excess energy into heat. In essence, white fat stores energy, while brown fat helps the body burn energy through heat. In adults, people with higher amounts of brown fat have lower body mass, and according to studies, increasing brown fat by as little as 50 grams could lead up to a 10 to 20 pound weight loss in one year.
Using adenosine, a new signaling molecule typically released during stress, researchers at University of Bonn have discovered a way to activate these brown fat cells, and even turn white fat cells into brown fat cells, a process called “browning.”
More recently, scientists at the Gladstone Institutes identified an FDA-approved drug that can help create more of this brown fat. “Introducing brown fat is an exciting new approach to treating obesity and associated metabolic diseases, such as diabetes,” said study first author Baoming Nie, PhD, a former postdoctoral scholar at Gladstone.
Such a method of treating obesity is still in the research phase, and may not likely become a commonly accepted practice for some time yet. There are several potential side effects that may arise from taking the drug, and more development is necessary before human trials can be explored. Nonetheless, it is an exciting direction in the field of obesity treatment that healthcare professionals should keep a close eye on.
In the meantime, weight management is still an urgent need for so many across the country. For healthcare providers, there are already many effective ways to begin treating obesity. Learn more about how to start a weight management program, or if you are a dieter, connect with a provider who can get you started on your weight loss journey today. Need more inspiration? Listen to some success stories of dieters who have lost more than 200 pounds by starting a medically supervised program.
Blog written by Vanessa Ramalho/Robard Corporation
November 15, 2016
For at least the last three decades, a shadow has been cast over butter as the artery clogging scourge of all saturated fats to be avoided at all cost, lest we put ourselves at risk for obesity and heart disease. But new information is coming out that suggests that reducing one’s intake of butter and similar dietary fats does not necessarily make you healthier or less at risk for obesity and other comorbid conditions.
A recent paper published in the journal PLOS ONE suggests that butter actually has more of a neutral association with mortality; that is, it’s not really bad for you, but it’s not really good for you either. The researchers collected data on butter consumption and health risks from nine previous studies that, in total, included 636,151 participants, and found that “no significant associations were seen between butter consumption and heart health.”
To be clear, this does not mean that butter is healthy. Small amounts of butter is not an issue, but regular consumption, such as using butter on bread, cooking and frying, can contribute to health risks. The key is to not consume large amounts of butter regularly, and when possible, to substitute it with healthy alternatives. (PRO TIP for weight loss providers: between apple pies and cookies, this is the season when dieters over-consume butter! Download our free staff training guide for tools and strategies to keep your dieters on track.)
“It doesn’t matter that you’re eating it; what matters is what you’re eating it in place of and what else you’re eating,” said Dr. Dariush Mozaffarian, Dean of the Tufts Friedman School of Nutrition Science & Policy and senior author of the paper. “Butter is neither the villain it was made out to be, nor a health food,” he added. “So it’s about your other food choices, not about the butter.”
It’s also important to remember that not all fats are created equal. While limiting saturated fats is a good idea, the trans fats found in butter alternatives like margarine are even worse for you. Plus, there are actually “good” fats known as polyunsaturated fats, found in foods such as avocados, fatty fish like salmon, and olive oil. These fats help reduce bad cholesterol levels in your blood which can lower your risk of heart disease and stroke. And oils rich in polyunsaturated fats also contribute vitamin E to the diet, an antioxidant vitamin most Americans need more of.
So is butter back? Well… kinda sorta. Don’t stress over a little here and there, but pay attention to your food choices overall. Instead of emphasizing one nutrient, focus on food-based recommendations… whole, minimally processed, nutritious food that is as close to its natural form as possible. Need more help to get your diet on track? Find provider who can help you start a meal program that’s right for you.
Are you a provider dealing with retention challenges during holiday season? We’ve got you covered. Register for Robard’s upcoming free webcast “2017: Your Year to Retain and Regain Clients.”
Sources: CNN, Harvard Public Health, American Heart Association
Blog written by Vanessa Ramalho/Robard Corporation
October 21, 2014
There are times that we are on the fence about whether or not we should
(or have to) lose weight. It’s understandable to blame those now
non-fitting jeans on drying them in the dryer instead of air-drying, or
saying you’re are tired just because you had a long day at work.
However, what if weight gain is the underlying issue and weight loss is a
simple, albeit arduous, remedy?
Here are some, but not all, signs that you may need to shed some pounds:
Measure your waist: If you were
to measure your waist right now how would the measurements compare to
your waist size a month ago? 6 months ago? A year ago? Increased inches
in the waist is a good barometer for showing if you gained weight and
how much you may need to lose since fat has a propensity to go to areas
around our waist and midsection.
Your doctor’s visit didn’t go too well: Weight
gain many times is accompanied with other ailments and health
conditions. What was your blood pressure measurement when you visited
the doctor? Did your latest doctor’s visit show that your cholesterol
maybe high or you could be developing type 2 diabetes? Any of these and
more could be caused by weight gain, but the good news is weight lost
will also help these conditions almost immediately.
Ouch! That Hurts: Weight gain tends
to add strain to certain parts of the body, resulting in pain in those
areas. Body parts like the back, knees, and hips are the typical areas
that fall victim to aches and pains from weight gain.
It’s in the genes: Sometimes
ailments and medical conditions are passed down from generation to
generation. Decrease the chances of you getting those ailments by living
a healthy lifestyle and maintaining a healthy weight.
Links: Cosmopolitan, National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute