Updated: 2012-03-23T14:17:47.786Z


Disney forced to close down attraction


Walt Disney World have closed an exhibit containing fit superheroes and fat villains who are depicted as lazy characters who eat too much.  Disney have come in for criticism from a range of groups and individuals, including a doctor of family medicine. 
Read the full story here:

Media have to take some responsibility for obesity problems


Researchers at Yale University believe that the media are at least partially responsible for adding fuel to America's obesity problem, although maybe that logic could be applied to the rest of the world too.  Click on the link below to see some of the photographic images that may help lock people who are obese into stereotypes that make it harder for them to break out.

New help for obesity


Researchers at a Spanish university have found that extracts of four plants showed positive results in targeting obesity, the Daily Express reported on 11 February 2012.

Two extracts appeared to target fat absorption, and two the reduction of fat in cells. 

The results also have potential benefits for those suffering or at risk of heart disease, diabetes and strokes.

Read the full article here:

The Biggest Loser


I've been following this season's Biggest Loser in the UK, hosted by Davina McCall, and it's addictive viewing.  Didn't realise there was an American version until I was sent the link below by the Google Alert I've got set up on obesity and weight loss.  One of the things that has really concerned me about the UK series is that we've seen people collapse during some of the physical training exercises and require medical intervention.  You have to wonder about the physical impact on the body's organs for people who are seriously obese and who are going from a standing start to such extreme physical exertion.

Another aspect that was interesting (and perhaps obvious) was that - again in the UK series - when the group were taken to Florida for a week to continue their weight loss programme, most failed to lose as much weight as in previous weeks and one lost nothing at all.  Several of the group said that it was just too difficult to keep up the pace in a different environment with so many distractions.  Either the producers won't do that or again, or perhaps it just makes good viewing?  I doubt it did much for the confidence or motivation of the individuals on the programme though.

Here are links to an interview with US Biggest Loser's 'Adrian'
and one for the UK programme where you can watch back episodes on ITV Player

You Tube Video: Teen Talks About Radical Obesity Treatment


Francis is a young person who felt he was running out of time to tackle his obesity problem and took radical and controversial action.  Weighing in at over 500lbs, Francis had tried an exercise programme but felt his body could not cope. The National Geographic Channel document Francis's journey.  Watch here

Obesity figures have not reduced in US since 2003


The Centers for Disease Control and Prevention have stated in their recent reports (one of which focuses on children) that obesity figures in the US have not increased since 2003, which is clearly positive - however, they have not decreased either, which is concerning.  Particularly as one of the researchers comments that if obesity rates do not go down, a considerable increase in diabetes will result. 

More than one-third of adults and almost 17% of children were obese in 2009-2010, says the report, citing fast food and lack of exercise as particular problems.  The importance of parental example was stressed, and parents were encouraged to switch off the TV and be active with their children. 

The figures were released online in the Journal of the American Medical Association.  Read more by following this link:

Weightlifting can be helpful for obese teens


David Fell suggests that weightlifting is not only a safe form of exercise which plays to the strengths of teenagers who are obese, but also suggests that it may be more beneficial than aerobic exercise.    Read more by clicking the link below.
Weightlifting can be helpful for obese kids(image)

Getting out of the weight trap


Obesity is one of the fastest growing epidemics in the western world and poses considerable health risks. In the United States, around 17% of children and adolescents aged 2-19 are obese triple the figures in 1980, while in Canada, national statistics show that 9% of teens are obese, nearly 3 times that of over 30 years ago. The UK has one of the highest rates of childhood obesity in Europe says the National Obesity Observatory.  One study in 2008 by Dr. Geetha Raghuveer, associate professor of pediatrics at the University of Missouri Kansas City School of Medicine and cardiologist at Children's Mercy Hospital found that young people who are obese have carotid arteries which are more like those of a 45 year old as well as abnormal levels of cholesterol.Obesity can be especially difficult for teens, at a time when they are trying to establish their identity, cope with hormonal changes, have exam pressures, and are desperate to be liked and accepted by their peer group in particular; and a self-destructive, self-perpetuating cycle can be established.  Feelings of hopelessness, depression, self loathing and despair about weight, and then eating more to try and block these out, and feeling too depressed or hopeless to be active, all contribute to what can feel like an out of control spiral into yet more weight gain, which in turn further increases all the negative feelings. Many suffer from extremely low self esteem and depression.Parents, carers and friends can find it difficult to know how best to help, and for the obese teen their weight issues can feel impossible to conquer.  They are often teased or bullied by their peers, and can experience negative comments and attitudes from teachers and other imortant adults.  Astonishingly, one study revealed that 46% of teachers believed that those who are obese are "undesirable marriage partners" for people who are not obese.    The International Business Times has reported on a controversial ad campaign in the US aimed at tackling the obesity crisis in young people which has been described as shocking.  Named "Stop Sugar-Coating It, Georgia", The campaign is run by Strong4Life in Atlanta and shows startling video coverage of young people talking about their weight.  Click this link to view more... help is available.  Whether you are a teen, a parent, a carer, or someone else reading this - don't give up.  It is completely possible to move out of obesity and to (re)gain your life, especially if the root causes are tackled.  Check out some of the resources here and I'll be adding both free information and other resources in the future.  [...]