Sunday, February 26, 2017

Is the key to weight-loss in our genes?

According to an article Can we harness our genes to burn more calories? on Science Daily, Obesity Society states “Researchers may have identified a potential pathway in our muscle tissue to improve the rate at which our bodies burn calories”.

Continued studies have shown that our ability to lose weight may not lie entirely on individuals behavior but may lie in their genes. In a study at NIDDK’s Phoenix Epidemiology and clinical research branch a gene expression from skeletal muscle biopsies of 219 people were studied for long term weight loss over several years. In the skeletal muscle they found a gene THNSL2 that had a strong association between low energy expenditure and weight gain. Through this finding they found that an mRNA might be the culprit for manipulating the energy expenditure through inflammatory pathways that related to obesity and energy expenditure. These studies are bringing people closer to understanding why individuals bodies respond differently to contrasting diets.

I think this is an amazing advancement in the field of obesity studies. With obesity rates skyrocketing and the rate of eating disorders on the rise any advancement in what actually defines how our body handles calories is remarkable. With studies like this hopefully we can continue to learn more about the variation in weight gain among people and hopefully this could help find more efficient treatments for obesity and possibly prevent obesity in all. We might finally crack the code as to why some people can eat junk food everyday and perpetually stay skinny, while other people need to exercise and eat right everyday to maintain just to maintain a healthy weight.      

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