Biological Factors Are the Cause of Recurrent Obesity

by Julia Samuel on February 13, 2015 at 2:38 PM
Font : A-A+

Biological Factors Are the Cause of Recurrent Obesity

Obesity management has to do with lifestyle changes like cutting down on calories and burning fat by regular physical activity. Obesity experts point out that obesity is a chronic disease with largely biological causes that cannot be cured with just diet and exercise.

80%-95% people with obesity regain their lost weight in a few months. One explanation for this limited long-term success is that reducing caloric intake triggers several biological systems that drive us to eat high-calorie foods and gain weight.


Lifestyle changes might not be the only way to tackle the fat-loss fight. Dr. Christopher Ochner, lead author and Assistant Professor of Pediatrics and Psychiatry at the Icahn School of Medicine at Mount Sinai in New York, USA explains, "Although lifestyle modifications may result in lasting weight loss in individuals who are overweight, in those with chronic obesity, body weight seems to become biologically 'stamped in' and defended. Therefore, the current advice to eat less and exercise more may be no more effective for most individuals with obesity than a recommendation to avoid sharp objects for someone bleeding profusely."

Recent evidence suggests that these biological adaptations could persist indefinitely, even in formerly obese individuals who achieve a healthy body weight through dieting. "Few individuals ever truly recover from obesity; rather they suffer from 'obesity in remission'. They are biologically very different from individuals of the same age, sex, and body weight who never had obesity."

The authors argue that if weight loss is to be sustained in the long-term, at least some of these biological factors need to be addressed. However, current biologically based interventions are limited to anti obesity drugs, weight-loss surgery and intra-abdominal vagal nerve blockage, which do not permanently correct the biological factors that undermine weight-loss effort.

Only Roux-en-Y gastric bypass, a common surgical procedure for extreme obesity, has been shown to reverse obesity-induced changes in appetite hormones and the brain's response to food. This might explain why bariatric surgery is the only treatment showing long-term effectiveness in individuals with sustained obesity.

According to Dr. Ochner, "Many clinicians are not aware of the reasons individuals with obesity struggle to achieve and maintain weight loss. Obesity should be recognised as a chronic and often treatment-resistant disease with both biological and behavioural causes that require a range of medical interventions including biologically based interventions such as pharmacotherapy or surgery as well as lifestyle modification."

He adds, "Ignoring these biological factors and continuing to rely on behavioural modification will surely result in the continued inability to treat obesity effectively and the premature death of millions of individuals each year."

Source: Medindia

News A-Z
News Category
What's New on Medindia
World Alzheimer's Day 2021 - 'Know Dementia, Know Alzheimer's
'Hybrid Immunity' may Help Elude COVID-19 Pandemic
View all

Medindia Newsletters Subscribe to our Free Newsletters!
Terms & Conditions and Privacy Policy.

More News on:
Bariatric Surgery Obesity Bulimia Nervosa Liposuction Battle of the Bulge Diabesity Hunger Fullness and Weight Control Diet and Nutrition for Healthy Weight Loss Diabetes Type 2 and Its Link to Sugar-Sweetened Beverages Carbohydrates and Its Role in Obesity 

Recommended Reading
Obesity is a condition where there is excess accumulation of body fat which poses a risk to the ......
Malnutrition to Obesity - The Big Leap
Obesity is the root cause of problems like diabetes, heart disease, stroke, arthritis and gall ......
Diet and Nutrition for Healthy Weight Loss
Correct diet and a planned exercise regime is the mantra of healthy and sustainable weight loss....
Weight Loss Drugs
Diet pills are medicines that help control or reduce weight. Diet pills are otherwise know as ......
Battle of the Bulge
The ‘battle of bulge’ is the toughest of all battles. Once you put on weight it is so difficult to g...
Bulimia Nervosa
The term ''Bulimia'' refers to episodes of uncontrolled excessive eating, known as "binges," followe...
Carbohydrates and Its Role in Obesity
Obesity is a global epidemic with majority of the world’s population in developed countries being ov...
With more than one billion people affected, diabesity is the largest epidemic in the world today. Fo...
Diabetes Type 2 and Its Link to Sugar-Sweetened Beverages
Sugar-sweetened beverages contribute to metabolic syndrome leading to higher risk for type-2 diabete...
Hunger Fullness and Weight Control
An erratic way of eating or any metabolic disturbance in the hunger fullness signals is one of the m...
Liposuction is a cosmetic procedure, which is used to suck out the excess or abnormal fat deposition...

Disclaimer - All information and content on this site are for information and educational purposes only. The information should not be used for either diagnosis or treatment or both for any health related problem or disease. Always seek the advice of a qualified physician for medical diagnosis and treatment. Full Disclaimer

© All Rights Reserved 1997 - 2021

This site uses cookies to deliver our services. By using our site, you acknowledge that you have read and understand our Cookie Policy, Privacy Policy, and our Terms of Use