obesity

Obesity by genetic factors

Obesity is the result of an interaction between genetic and enviromental factors. A study conducted in 2008 (Loos RJ, Bouchard C, "FTO: The first gene contributing to common forms of human obesity", Obesity Review, 9), states that individuals with two copies of FTO gene (FTO gene is associated with fat mass and obesity) are 7 to 9 pounds heavier and have a increased risk for developing obesity of 1.67% compared to patients without this allele.

The percentage of people that are obese due to genetic reasons ranges from 6% to 85% (YangW, Kelly T, He J, 2007 "Genetic epidemiology of obesity" Epidemiology Review, 29).

Obesity is the peculiar characteristic of certain diseases such as Bardet-Biedl syndrome, Cohen syndrome, Momo Sindrome.

 Seven percent of individuals suffering with severe obesity (BMI values more than three times higher than normal, which began before the tenth year of age), have a point mutation of DNA (FarooquiS, O'Rahilly S, December 2006, "Genetics of obesity in humans", Endocrinologist Review , 27). Genetic studies confirm that about 80 percent of children of obese parents are obese, while less than 10% of children of normal weight parents turn out to be obese. 

The 'thrifty gene' hypotesis claims that some ethnic groups, in the same environmental conditions, may be more prone to obesity than others. The ability of these individuals to accumulate energy reserves (such as fat), during the rare periods of abundance, for a better survival in periods of starvation (habit certainly out of place in our western society), explains why the Pima Indians, used to surviving in a desert ecosystem, once arrived in big cities and with a changed lifestyle, have developed exceptional levels of obesity'.

(JC Wells, February 2009: "Ethnic variability in adiposity and cardiovascular risk: the variable disease selection hypotesis).

Obesity by genetic factors

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