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Obesity is a global epidemic, affecting almost all areas of human health, from heart disease to cancer, and impacting upon most of the major causes of preventable death. However, in recent years, obesity has increased dramatically in many parts of the world with India ranking third in the world’s most obese countries. Although diet and lifestyle choices play a big role, obesity might be in your genes, according to a recent study.
With over 50% of obesity being attributed to genetics, obesity can be an inherited condition. We inherit a lot more from our parents and grand-parents than our skin, hair colour and intelligence, but also predisposition to conditions such as obesity. Understanding one’s genetic profile can help individuals understand their body type and tailor their diets to foods best suited to them.
The obesity gene – FTO
The FTO gene, commonly called the obese gene is a major contributor to obesity in individuals. One version of this gene makes impulse control difficult, affecting your food choice and makes it difficult to maintain a healthy weight. Several other genes such as MC4R, INSIG, TCF7L2, LEP, IRS, have also been found to contribute to obesity. While genes do play some role in causing a predisposition to obesity, they are not entirely to blame. According to a study published by Harvard School of Public Health, ‘Active adults who carried the obesity-promoting gene had a 30 percent lower risk of obesity than inactive adults who carried the gene’. In addition to genetics, there are several factors that play a role – unhealthy lifestyles, diet inadequate in nutrients but rich in calories, higher stress levels, physical inactivity, rise in conditions such as diabetes, hormonal imbalances, in fertility etc.
Genetic tests are available nowadays to tell you what type of genes that you carry and your susceptibility to obesity. Personalised weight management programs are more effective than one size fits all approach that provides generic advice.
Simple dietary modifications can help you to overcome risks of gaining weight that might be caused due to your obesity genes:
- Drink 1 glass of water before every meal that you consume. This helps you to make you feel full and eat less.
- Slow paced eating (20-25 minutes) helps you to feel full and also aids in digestion.
- Protein rich breakfast such as two egg whites or 1 cup of pulses will help you to maintain your satiety.
- High fibre diet (at least 3-4 servings of vegetables and 2 servings of fruits) will help you to lose weight.
- Adding a variety to your diet will also help you to lose weight.
What do you mean by Beet Juice. Is it Beet root juice? What are the fruits and vegetables which helps you to increase the antioxidant intake. Is regular consumption of Badam an.
While most of us aiming to lose weight focus on reducing fats, many of us fail to understand the role that refined sugar play in increasing our body weight and waistlines.
Here are some simple tips for reducing sugars in your diet:
1. Practice yourself to enjoy foods that are naturally sweet, without added sugar. Choose seasonal fruits as your snack.
2. Try to make homemade sauces and toppings with less sugar.
3. Sugar- sweetened beverages like milkshakes and coffee drinks, which are full of sugar and calories. Try to limit the intake of these beverages.
4. Mix fresh or dried fruit into plain, home-made yogurt, many ready-to-eat fruity yogurts are loaded with added sugar.
5. Opt for the smallest sized can or bottle you can find, if you want to have soft drinks. Soft drinks are commonly sold in big bottles (approx. 600ml), which provide at least 12-15 teaspoons of sugar.