All Articles Tagged "obesity"
Although there is a common belief that the earlier you give birth, the easier it is for your body to “bounce back,” a recent study suggests that this may not be true, The Huffington Post reports.
The study actually suggests that teen pregnancy may raise risks of obesity.
“We know that teen pregnancy is tied to certain immediate risks, such as babies having low birth weight and mothers struggling to complete high school — and now we know that it is also associated with poor long-term health outcomes,” said Dr. Tammy Chang, a researcher who worked on the study.
“When taking care of teen moms, we often have so many immediate concerns — child care, housing, school, social and financial support — that we don’t often think of the long term health effects of teen pregnancy,” Chang continued.
The study was conducted on 5,520 women between the ages of 20 and 59. It compares those who gave birth in their teens to those who had not. Researchers analyzed the data and placed each woman into a group of either being a normal weight (with a body mass index between 18.5 and 24.9), overweight (with a BMI between 25 and 29.9) or obese (with a BMI higher over 30).
The survey revealed that 44.2% of the women who gave birth in their teens were obese, while 35.2% of the women who gave birth after 19 were obese.
The study did not find a huge difference between the groups of women who fell into the overweight category, but it did find that fewer women who gave birth in their teens fell into the normal weight category. Only 26.1% of participants who had children in their teenage years were found to be in the normal weight group.
Researchers went on to note that there is an association between teen pregnancy and obesity, but that does’t necessarily mean that teen pregnancy causes obesity.
When you consider how long Tyrese Gibson has been in the entertainment industry, one would think that by now he’d know how to offer “politically correct” answers in place of responses that might be perceived as offensive. Or possibly he has learned and simply doesn’t care. During a recent interview with All Hip Hop, the 34-year-old singer-turned-actor-turned-author was asked asked if he felt responsible as an entertainer to “inspire people to live healthier lifestyles.” While the question seemed pretty general, the “Stay” singer offered a pretty harsh response.
“No two situations are the same. If you are fat and n*sty and you don’t like the way you look, do something about it. It’s simple,” he responded.
“When you take a shower and you put your fat, n*sty body in the shower and by the time you get out, the mirrors are all steamed up so you don’t look at what you did to yourself. That may sound offensive or insensitive but ultimately, you are big as hell because you have earned that sh**. You worked your a** off to eat everything in sight to get big as hell,” Gibson continued.
“If you got a problem with the way you look, then you need to do something about it. Excuses sound best to the people that’s making them up,” he finished.
While there may be some truth to Gibson’s statement, as the motivation for any lifestyle change generally begins within, his delivery was all wrong and comes off a bit insensitive. As you may have guessed, his comments didn’t sit too well with some fans and his Twitter mentions have been filled with people criticizing him for his comments. In turn, the singer took to his Twitter page to offer an apology for his style of delivery and rebuke media outlets for “twisting” his words.
What is your opinion on his comments? Is he simply offering tough love or was he totally out of line?
From your mother to your girlfriends, and even yourself, we all have our views on how to lose weight. But, has anyone actually stopped to see if these general views are true? Well, a recent article in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) exposed some of the common views and tested their truth. Researchers completed an internet search for popular weight loss tips and then searched research papers for evidence on how effective — or ineffective — the advice was. Here’s a breakdown of what they found.
- Engaging in sex can cause you to lose a good amount of calories. Wrong! A study that looked into this found that an average man would only lose a total of 21 calories during a 6 minute sex session (FYI, it takes a deficit of 3,500 calories to lose one pound). Although the amount of energy used during sex is a lot, the average amount of time people use to have sex is not. As a result, the total amount of calories used is very small. Maybe the next time you are in the mood, you can consider an hour-long continuous session?
- Those who win the weight loss “race” are those who stay slow and steady and not those who are fast. According to the NEJM article, there is NO truth in that. The research fact is this: those who stick to a “starvation diet” (AKA a very low calorie diet) will lose a lot more weight in the beginning compared to those who don’t. However, when the study visited both groups in one year, they saw no difference in the total amount of weight loss. Basically, it doesn’t matter if you do it rapidly or slowly.
- Skipping breakfast or eating a snack can hurt your weight loss. I’m sure a lot of you have heard these myths. Skipping breakfast or eating a snack will not stop your weight loss. The more important thing is what you are eating, not when you do eat.
- Setting realistic goals and motivation are key to success. Nope. Apparently these factors are not important when you are losing weight according to this article. I don’t know about this one because I personally think that if you start a diet/exercise program, there has to be some form of motivation tied to it. But I have also seen people lose weight even when their goals were or were not realistic.
- Those who were breastfed tend to be skinny. I think this seems more obvious. Although breastfeeding has multiple benefits for a baby, being forever skinny is not one of them.
- Obesity can be in your genes, but it will only come to fruition in the right environment. Pretty much you are what you eat! If you choose foods high in calories and fat, you are likely to be fat, especially if it is in your genes. If you eat a well-balanced diet and stick to portion control, you can be skinny even if obesity is in your genes.
- Dieting is not the long term solution. Dieting can help you lose the weight. However, if you go back to the same way of eating afterward, the weight will always come back.
- Exercise is the long term solution. One of the true keys to weight loss is tying exercise to your daily life for the rest of your life.
- There is more to exercise than losing weight. Exercise alone has been tied to a huge improvement in high blood pressure and diabetes in some people. It is the best known secret for curing, if not preventing, many diseases, including some cancers.
- For overweight kids, weight loss programs should involve everyone in the home. How are the kids going to lose weight if you don’t?
The bottom line is that in order to lose weight, there have to be multiple approaches which include: lower food intake (stick with only eating a certain amount of calories per day), exercising, and reducing the amount of sweets/fat. Lastly, it is not just about dieting; it should be a lifestyle change.
We’re sure this new study is gong to raise a few eyebrows. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is funding a study to find out why a majority of homosexual women are overweight, reports The Washington Times. The group is spending $1.5 million in order to determine why nearly three-quarters of adult gay women are overweight or obese, compared to half of straight women.
The study will examine biological and social factors and will be conducted by Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. The two grants were administered by NIH’s Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) to study the relationship between sexual orientation and obesity.
While this study has been planned according to the NICHD, its future is uncertain because of the sequester.
“The NIH is currently assessing the impact on funding due to sequestration,” said Robert Bock, press officer for the NICHD. ”It is not possible to say how this (or any other NIH grant) will be affected in the long term beyond the 90 percent funding levels already in place.”
But according to Bock, the issue is an important one. “Obesity is a serious public health problem affecting a large proportion of the U.S. population,” Bock said. ”The study is examining reasons why the risk of obesity varies according to sexual orientation, in order to inform the development of future strategies to prevent obesity.”
The outcome of the study may shed light on obesity trends in general—even in the minority community. “Our study has high potential for public health impact not only for sexual minorities, Bock continued, but also for straight men and gay women “as we seek to uncover how processes of gender socialization may exacerbate obesity risk.”
Are You Buying This? Critics of NYC’s Large Soda Ban, Including NAACP, Say It Hurts Minority Businesses
Opponents and supporters of New York City’s ban on oversized sugary drinks made a court appearance yesterday, with critics seeking to put the measure on hold while this lawsuit is resolved. It’s scheduled to go into effect on March 12. At issue, reports the Associated Press, are biases that will disproportionately impact small and minority-owned businesses.
Mayor Bloomberg and his administration say this is an effort to combat the high obesity rate — 24 percent of adults in the city — and trim the $4.7 billion price tag for treating obesity-related illnesses.
The NAACP and the Hispanic Federation have joined the American Beverage Association and a number of other groups who argue that the rule oversteps into consumer choice and isn’t fair to businesses that will be prohibited from selling the jumbo beverages while convenience stores and other large businesses, which aren’t subject to city health rules, can sell the items. Businesses caught violating the 16-ounce rule will face a $200 fine, starting in June.
“The NAACP and the Hispanic Federation, an organization of 100 Northeastern groups, say their concern is that minority-owned delis and corner stores will end up at a disadvantage compared with grocery chains,” wrote the AP.
But some are calling out these organizations because of their ties to the big beverage companies. Among the ties cited: Coke is giving $100,000 to the NAACP for healthy lifestyle initiatives and former Hispanic Federation President Lillian Rodriguez Lopez now works for Coca-Cola. Gawker (h/t New York‘s Daily Intelligencer blog) also points out that the Hispanic Federation’s annual gala will honor Coca-Cola with the Corporate Leadership Award.
“Given that obesity rates are higher than average among blacks and Hispanics, the NAACP should refuse soda makers’ money and ‘reevaluate the position the group is taking in New York City,’ Michael F. Jacobson, the executive director of the nutrition advocacy group Center for Science in the Public Interest,” the AP adds.
“In its brief, the N.A.A.C.P. conceded that obesity was a significant problem among blacks and Hispanics. But the group urged the city to create a more holistic program to attack the problem, including an increase in financing for physical education programs in public schools,” The New York Times reports.
Are you buying this racial argument from the NAACP and the Hispanic Federation? The ban is a little heavy-handed, but honestly, if you want to drink that much soda, you can purchase that much soda. You just can’t do it in one container. So instead of buying a 20-ounce soda at the corner store, you buy two cans. Is that so outrageous?
The health issues associated with obesity have to be tackled, and we have to start somewhere. Why not start here? And if it doesn’t work, you do away with it. The NAACP is right; there should be increased physical education in public schools. But diet is a huge issue as well. Public policy is stepping in to try and change unhealthy behavior.
Today and again in two weeks all eyes will be on Beyonce Knowles as she performs at the inauguration and Super Bowl. As someone who has music from every solo album Beyonce has ever recorded, I can say that I have been a long time fan. So I never thought I would be giving people — especially children and communities of color — this piece of advice: do not listen to Beyonce.
You would have to be living in a bubble to have missed the news that Beyonce cut a reported $50 million, multi-year deal with PepsiCo. Although the deal may meet Beyonce’s and Pepsi’s mutually-beneficial marketing needs, it does not serve the best interests of the U.S. public, which is in the midst of working to combat an obesity epidemic.
While the marketing tactics of soda companies are not new — after all, Beyonce, Sofia Vergara and so many other superstars past and present have been used by soda companies to encourage people to consume unhealthy beverages for decades — what is new is that this deal comes during a time of increased public concern about the role that sugar-sweetened beverages play in contributing to weight gain.
Read the rest at BlackVoices
Soft drink manufacturer Coca-Cola is joining the fight against obesity with its latest advertising campaign.
In a new two-minute spot that is hitting the airwaves this week, the company highlights its drink offerings with fewer calories and talks about how consuming too many calories from a variety of sources can contribute to weight gain, the Associated Press reported.
Additionally, Coca-Cola will spend 2013 focusing on the issue of obesity with several campaigns, including more diet options at soda fountains, more noticeably posting calorie counts for cans and bottles of soda, and helping consumers make smarter choices when it comes to what they drink.
“We have not done a good enough job in telling our story and being consistent in telling our story,” Diana Garza Ciarlante, a spokeswoman for Coca-Cola, told the AP. She also said the company will be consistent with its brand voice, including its “happiness” theme, in another 30-second ad that will also run during American Idol and before the Super Bowl. This ad will focus on “140 happy calories” and ways consumers can burn off those calories, such as walking a dog or enjoying a silly dance with friends.
While the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation reported in September 2012 that overall childhood obesity rates were slightly down from previous years, the declines were smaller for minority children. African-American women also struggle with some of the highest obesity rates, according to the Center for Disease Control and Prevention, and several celebrities are working to address the issue.
Meanwhile, Coca-Cola posted a video online in December, hinting at its work to fight obesity called “Together for Good.” In 2013, expect to see more not only from Coca-Cola, but other obesity-fighting advocates, as this issue continues to affect Americans.
As I sit and stare down at my laptop writing this article the pudge peeking from below my tank top serves as an unwelcome reminder that I am getting older and my metabolism isn’t what it used to be. Although the workings of weight gain and loss are quite complex, simply put most doctors agree that as we age our bodies tend to lose muscle and as we lose muscle our metabolism tends to decrease. What does that mean for me? It means in order for me to maintain this size 3 waist I may finally have to admit that the pickles on my Big Mac don’t count as a vegetable and stop counting my ten minute walk to the train as a workout.
For many women big and small, weight consumes their world. But the only reason I ever watched my waistline was to put the belt through the loops on my skinny jeans. It’s true; I’m the evil skinny woman that Monique threw shade at in Skinny Women Are Evil: Notes of a Big Girl in a Small-Minded World which some would argue doesn’t encourage self-confidence but excuses an unhealthy lifestyle by throwing around phrases such as “fabulous and thick.“ At 5’2” and 115 pounds, I wasn’t offended. Us skinny girls have our own problems, but don’t blame me for being genetically blessed. And it’s not that I don’t think big girls are beautiful. Are you kidding me? If you tune in for 15 minutes of 106 and Park you’ll be bombarded with images of voluptuous backsides bouncing beneath trial size waistlines. Most of the girls glorified by our culture don’t look like Monique, but they don’t necessarily look like my no-hips-having behind either.
I’d be lying if I said I wasn’t painfully aware of the fact that petite privilege exists. It’s why employers typically hire pretty, thin woman as administrative assistants rationalizing, “They’re the first image that introduces a client to the company,” as if being pretty and skinny means that you’re a competent employee (if that even really matters). I first became aware of the fact that these judgments came naturally to me when I noticed I instinctively breathed through my mouth on the bus whenever a bigger person sat near me. We’ve rendered fat people as the scapegoats for every social group’s flaws. We automatically associate obesity with odor, poor hygiene and a lack of self-control…and that’s completely foul. Still, the first step is recognizing that you have a problem and I recognize my way of thinking about weight is seriously flawed.
One Is The Loneliest (And Heaviest) Number: Study Says Doing Group Weight Loss Program Might Yield The Best Results
While we’d like to think that being determined about dropping pounds, eating right and exercising will yield us the weight loss results we want, the truth is, sometimes support plays the biggest part in whether or not you lose weight, gain weight, or stay the same size in your journey.
A new study put together by author Angela Marinilli Pinto, assistant professor of psychology at Baruch College of the City University of New York, found that when it comes to losing weight, programs like Weight Watchers and these type of groups tend to keep people the most inspired, and can help them lose the most weight. The findings were published in the journal, Obesity this week. As Pinto put it:
“Group-based weight-loss treatment produced weight loss , whether delivered by a professional or peer counselor. When people are in a group with others on the same journey, they feel there is that element of, ‘OK, this worked for him or her, perhaps it will work for me. Perhaps I can give it a try.’”
For the study, 141 obese men and women were placed into one of three groups: individuals seeking help from a professional, those participating in weight watchers, and those who did a mixture of both. Everyone got 48 weeks of behavioral weight-loss treatment, and the group who sought out help from a professional and through Weight Watchers got 12 weeks with the professional and 36 weeks in WW. And on a side note, Weight Watchers was used in the study as it was the largest commercial group program in the States.
Though Pinto and her team thought those who were able to benefit from combined treatment would lose the most weight, actually, those in the Weight Watchers program dropped the most in the time given.
On average, those in the Weight Watchers group lost at least 13.9 pounds, while those using personal professional treatment lost 11.9. The combined group actually lost the least amount of weight, with an average of just 7.9 pounds. The Weight Watchers group was the most likely to drop at least 10 percent of their starting weight as well. Why? Because of the classes! Regular involvement with people going through the same process helped out a great deal. As Connie Diekman of WashU in St. Louis told HealthDay News, “The study does demonstrate that regular involvement in weight-loss classes helps with weight loss. This point should be considered when people think about weight loss — doing it alone may not yield success.”
Makes a lot of sense. It’s no fun to lug yourself to the gym alone, see a personal trainer by yourself, and eat only green ish while all of your friends and family are scarfing down steaks. Knowing that you actually can pinpoint and work with someone going through a similar journey can truly make all the difference. Keep this in mind if you’re out here trying to tackle weight issues. Group programs just might be your answer.
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While you were sleeping in this Labor Day morning, the TODAY show was taking a look at a new retail trend in girls clothing. The increasing number of overweight children in the U.S. and the higher number of girls who are simply growing bigger and taller at a younger age has prompted more stores to carry “plus-size” girls clothing.
According to the report from the show’s consumer correspondent Janice Lieberman, larger-sized children’s clothing has always been around. And for boys, it’s typically called “husky.” But for young girls, finding stylish clothes is difficult. Sears, Gap, Children’s Place and other stores are responding to the need. Sears has a “Pretty Plus” line for girls between the ages of seven and 12. Other retailers are offering bigger sizing for girls as young as three, most of it online.
In the studio interview, Morgan Joseph, an 11-year-old who is already 5′ 9″ tall, talked about the troubles she’s had shopping for clothes, noting that she even had a problem finding an outfit to wear on the show that would fit and be “age appropriate.” Sitting beside her mother Sharon, she said she plans on launching her own line of clothing.
“I don’t want [other kids] to go through what I had to go through,” she said at one point.
She also has a problem with the term “plus size.”
“I don’t really enjoy the word ‘plus,’” she said. “I think there should just be numbers like they do for other kids.”
With back-to-school shopping happening later this year, there are probably a lot of parents out there still grappling with this issue as well. Across all age groups, retailers have found value in selling plus-size clothing with more stores and brands — like H&M and The Limited — offering larger sizes. The Los Angeles Times quotes the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, which says more than a third of Americans are obese and nearly two-thirds of women are overweight. At least half of women wear a size 14 or larger. As a result, this is a growing segment of the retail industry, with sales expected to reach about $7.5 billion this year.
Parents, schools and politicians are fighting the growing childhood obesity issue. School lunches coming under greater scrutiny and more emphasis being placed on exercise and the health problems that arise for children who’ve put on a lot of weight. But, as the segment shows, it’s not just an issue with obesity. Some kids just grow quickly.
Do you agree with Morgan that retailers should use a different term? Should “plus-size” clothing come under a different name?