Related Posts Plugin for WordPress, Blogger...

Are Obesity Genetics Written In Stone?

>> Monday, October 2, 2017





In my practice, I often talk about the genetic predisposition to obesity.

Modern science has now identified over 100 genes that are associated with obesity, with each of these genes contributing a pound or two to the overall weight struggle.  So if a person has a high number of these 'bad' genes, they will have a bigger struggle with obesity, and a higher 'set point' of body weight, than someone who has only a few of these genes.   This can seem like a huge bummer - you can't change your genes (side bar: well actually you can but not in a good way - that's a story for another day) - so does this mean that the efforts to lose weight are hopeless?

The answer is, no.  Even for people who have more of the obesity-engendering genes, it is possible to lose weight, though a realistic weight goal will likely be higher than someone who has less obesity engendering genes.  In addition, a new study sheds light on gene-environment interactions in obesity, teaching us that certain behaviours can modify the effect of our genes on our body weight.

The study, published in PLOS Genetics, looked at gene-environment interactions for body mass index, using a large database of over 350,000 Caucasian people from the UK Biobank.  They found 15 lifestyle factors that influence our genes' effects on body weight, including:

  • alcohol intake frequency
  • usual walking pace
  • socioeconomic status
  • number of days per week of physical activity lasting at least 10 minutes
  • time spent watching TV
  • frequency of climbing stairs
  • smoking 
So, the good news here is that we CAN influence our genes' effect on body weight to some extent with the lifestyles we lead. While some of the ability to use these factors may be affected by e.g. physical limitations, I think it's encouraging to know that the effect of our genetics are not set in stone.


Follow me on twitter! @drsuepedersen

www.drsue.ca © 2017


1 comments:

Smith October 17, 2017 at 3:33 AM  

This is the first time i read your blog and admire that you have posted on this.I really appreciate your effort.. Thank you for sharing this...

A HEARTFELT WELCOME!

I am excited that you have arrived at my site, and I hope you are too - consider this the first step towards a Healthier New You!! As a medical doctor, Endocrinologist, and obesity specialist, I am absolutely passionate about helping people with weight management. Though there is certainly no magic cure for obesity, there IS a successful treatment plan out there for you - it is all about understanding the elements that contribute to your personal weight struggle, and then finding the treatment plan that suits your needs and your lifestyle. The way to finding your personal solution is to learn as much as you can about obesity: how our toxic environment has shaped us into an overweight society; the diversity of contributors to obesity; and what the treatment options out there are really all about. Knowledge Is Power!!


Are you ready to change your life? Let's begin our journey together, towards a healthier, happier you!!




  © Blogger templates Palm by Ourblogtemplates.com 2008

Back to TOP