Tuesday December 11, 2018

Obesity affects males more than females: Study

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By NewsGram Staff Writer

Obesity may be tougher on male immune systems than females, suggests a study led by an Indian-American researcher.

Kanakadurga Singer, assistant professor in pediatrics at the University of Michigan, found that high-fat diets reprogram blood stem cells in male mice, promoting metabolic disease.

“Men and women have very different cardiovascular and diabetes risk. Male mice are often studied because their risk for developing these diseases is higher,” Singer explained.

For this, researchers compared how mice from each sex reacted to high-fat diets.

They found that in young reproductive-age female mice who were fed a high-fat diet which made them obese, the body produced only a mild inflammatory white blood cell response.

In male mice, however, diet-induced obesity made more active inflammatory white blood cells and enhanced their progenitors.

This, in turn, made the male mice more prone to higher blood glucose and insulin levels.

“We found that obesity did not trigger inflammation in female mice the way it did in males,” Singer added.

The research helps in providing the foundation for future clinical studies exploring how these differences impact diseases such as diabetes.

“Our research highlights the need to broaden clinical investigations and animal studies to include both males and females to better guide new interventions,” Singer said.

The study was published in the Journal of Biological Chemistry.

(With inputs from IANS)

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Obesity Spikes up Asthma Risk in Children

"Addressing childhood obesity should be a priority to help improve the quality of life of children and help reduce paediatric asthma," Finkel noted

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Obesity increases asthma risk in children: Study. Pixabay

Parents, please take note. Obese children are at an increased risk of asthma, a new study has found.

The findings suggest that the incidence of an asthma diagnosis among children with obesity was significantly higher than in those in a normal weight range and that 23 to 27 per cent of new asthma cases were directly attributable to obesity.

“Paediatric asthma is among the most prevalent childhood conditions and comes at a high cost to patients, families and the greater health system,” said co-author Terri Finkel from Nemours Children’s Hospital in Orlando.

“There are few preventable risk factors to reduce the incidence of asthma, but our data show that reducing the onset of childhood obesity could significantly lower the public health burden of asthma,” Finkel added.

For the study published in the journal Paediatrics, the research team analysed medical records of more than 500,000 children.

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The study provides new insight that could help us predict and manage diseases like asthma – which are a significant public health burden. IANS

The researchers reviewed de-identified data of patients aged two to 17 without a history of asthma, receiving care from six paediatric academic medical centres between 2009 and 2015.

Overweight or obese patients were matched with normal weight patients of the same age, gender, race, ethnicity, insurance type and location of care.

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The researchers found that obesity among children with asthma appears to increase disease severity. Being overweight was identified as a modest risk factor for asthma, and the association was diminished when the most stringent definition of asthma was used.

“Addressing childhood obesity should be a priority to help improve the quality of life of children and help reduce paediatric asthma,” Finkel noted. (IANS)