Here is a headline in today's local newspaper:
More Studies Tie Sugary Drinks to Obesity - pretty profound don't you think?
As if the obese needed another excuse, here's the subtitle:
Research links genes that predispose people to weight gain with consumption of sweet beverages.
Here's the body of the article by Marilynn Marchione/Associated Press
New research powerfully strengthens the case against soda and other sugary drinks as culprits in the obesity epidemic.
The case wasn't already powerful enough?
A huge, decades-long study involving more than 33,000 Americans has yielded the first clear proof that drinking sugary beverages interacts with genes that affect weight, amplifying a person's risk for obesity beyond what it would be from heredity alone. And most of us have at least some of these genes.
In addition, two other major experiments have found that giving children and teens calorie-free alternatives to the sugary drinks they usually consume leads to less weight gain.
I never would have associated the two.
Collectively, the results strongly suggest that sugary drinks cause people to pack on the pounds, independent of other unhealthy behavior such as overeating and getting too little exercise, scientists say.
Those are usually the same people who overeat and get too little exercise. It took a scientist for this?
There was some good news: Sugar-free drinks did not raise the risk of obesity in these studies.
What a relief!
The studies were presented Friday at an obesity conference in San Antonio and were published online the the New England Journal of Medicine.
Good! This information needs to get out right away!
The gene research in particular fills a major gap in what we know about obesity. It was a huge undertaking, involving three long-running studies that separately and collectively reached the same conclusions. It shows how behavior combines with heredity to affect how fat we become.
I did not know fat was inherited, did you? I have heard we inherit tendencies and a certain amount of "constitution" but this is hardly groundbreaking.
After that there was another astounding revelation:
Obesity Rates, Consumption of Sugary Drinks Rise Together - wow, just let that sink in.
Sugary drinks are the single biggest source of calories in the American diet, and they are increasingly blamed for the fact that a third of U.S. children and teens and more than two-thirds of adults are obese of overweight.
I never would have thought that, how about you?
Consumption of sugary drinks and obesity rates have risen in tandem--both have more than doubled since the 1970's in the U.S. But genes, inactivity and eating fatty foods or just too much food also play a role.
I'm speechless, really.