Overeating to blame for U.S. obesity epidemic

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    Overeating to blame for U.S. obesity epidemic


    NEW YORK (Reuters Health) The major reason for the obesity epidemic that has gripped the United States in the past three decades is increased food intake, not reduced physical activity, according to a study released Friday at the European Congress on Obesity in Amsterdam.
    The study is the first to quantify the relative contributions of food and exercise habits to the growing number of Americans with bulging waistlines.
    "In the U.S., over the last 30 years, it seems that the food side of the equation has changed much more than the physical activity side," Professor Boyd A. Swinburn, director of the World Health Organization Collaborating Center for Obesity Prevention at Deakin University, Melbourne, Australia, noted in a telephone interview with Reuters Health.
    Weight gain in the American population seems to be virtually all due to the consumption of more calories, with declines in physical activity playing only a minor role, Swinburn explained.
    "We absolutely need to continue to promote increased physical activity and a healthy diet because they are both obviously beneficial factors in terms of obesity," he emphasized. "But when it comes to placing priorities, I think it needs to be on reducing energy intake. It's particularly important for policymakers to focus on the energy intake side of the equation."
    In the study, Swinburn and his colleagues calculated how much adults need to eat in order to maintain a stable weight and how much children need to eat in order to maintain a normal growth curve.
    They then figured out how much Americans were actually eating, using national food supply data from the 1970s and the early 2000s. This information allowed them to predict how much weight Americans would be expected to gain over the 30-year study period if food intake were the only influence.
    Next, the investigators determined the actual weight gained over the study period using data from a nationally representative survey that recorded the weight of Americans in the 1970s and early 2000s.
    In children, according to Swinburn and colleagues, the predicted and actual weight increase matched exactly, which indicates that the increases in energy intake alone over the 30 years studied could explain the added pounds, they say.
    In adults, the data predicted that they would be 10.8 kg (23.8 pounds) heavier, but in fact they were only 8.6 kg (18.9 pounds) heavier. This finding, Swinburn noted, "suggests that excess food intake still explains the weight gain, but that there may have been increases in physical activity over the 30 years that have blunted what would otherwise have been a higher weight gain."
    "To return to the average weights of the 1970s, we would need to reverse the increased food intake of about 350 calories a day for children (about one can of fizzy drink and a small portion of French fries) and 500 calories a day for adults (about one large hamburger)," Swinburn noted in a statement from the meeting.
    "Alternatively, we could achieve similar results by increasing physical activity by about 150 minutes a day of extra walking for children and 110 minutes for adults, but realistically, although a combination of both is needed, the focus would have to be on reducing calorie intake," he added.
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    No big surprise. (He says as he tears into his tenth twinkie of the day)
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    I know its like "The sun rising linked to higher light levels".
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    Quote Originally Posted by EasyEJL View Post
    I know its like "The sun rising linked to higher light levels".
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    contrary to the media... everyone thinks that eating dark chocolate can aid in weight loss. the media is so far behind what bodybuilders and athletes have known since arnolds day.
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    Quote Originally Posted by bigrobk View Post
    contrary to the media... everyone thinks that eating dark chocolate can aid in weight loss. the media is so far behind what bodybuilders and athletes have known since arnolds day.
    When I was in school the dimmest bulbs on campus either were in the journalism or education tracks. That's how my long dark descent into becoming an anti social prick began, when I noticed that the people who would be teaching the kids and who would be responsible for keeping the public informed almost exclusively came from the wrong side of the bell curve. My worst fears were confirmed. In a majority rule system, the middle and left portion of the bell curve generally disagree with and out vote the right portion. Failure is inevitable.
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    How profound. Eating makes you obese.
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    its ironic that the study doesn't site the rise of the fast food industry from 1970's to today, and how the portion sizes have increased by 50% or more since the 70's. add that to the general laziness of society (the dorks that cruise around the parking lot to find the closest parking space to wall-mart - or the gym, which poses a double irony) its no wonder that obesity rates are climbing.
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    Quote Originally Posted by suncloud View Post
    its ironic that the study doesn't site the rise of the fast food industry from 1970's to today, and how the portion sizes have increased by 50% or more since the 70's. add that to the general laziness of society (the dorks that cruise around the parking lot to find the closest parking space to wall-mart - or the gym, which poses a double irony) its no wonder that obesity rates are climbing.
    I don't think the dorks are anything new. There were probably cowboys who got pissed if they had to tie up their horses at the next livery down the road from the closest salloon. But I think a study of portion size and macro content of typical food as they've developed over time would be very interesting.
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    Quote Originally Posted by CDB View Post
    I think a study of portion size and macro content of typical food as they've developed over time would be very interesting.
    from : http://www.alternative-health-care-g...tion-size.html

    Just to give you an idea of where we’re headed, in the 1970’s 12 ounce soda was the typical size you would get from a restaurant but now it’s 20 ounces. That’s not even counting those huge sodas you can get at your local convenient store, some up to 64 ounces. Bagels used to weigh two to three ounces but now they weigh four to seven ounces. How about those McDonalds French Fries. A regular serving weighs one third the size of the largest size now. These larger sizes have become so normal to us that when we see these smaller one serving size portions they look like a tiny amount of food.

    and from : http://www.vmhospital.com/joomla/ind...=241&Itemid=90

    Did you know that in the 1950’s and 1960’s that a regular serving of French Fries at a fast food restaurant was 2 ounces and 200 calories? By the 1970’s, the portion size was about 3 ounces and 300 calories and labeled as large instead of regular. During the 1980’s the “large” order was renamed “medium” and the new large grew to 4 ounces and 400 calories. Growth for the French fry was not over.

    By the mid-90’s, the large had expanded to 450 calories and the new 550-calorie super-size was introduced. Today, a large order of fries has over 545 calories (an increase of 345 calories from its 1950’s 2 ounce debut) and the new super size is 610 calories and about 6 ounces.

    The original McDonald’s meal of a burger, fries and 12-ounce Coke contained 590 calories. This is a meager comparison to today’s top-selling super-sized Value Meal that gets you a # cheeseburger, a super-sized fries and a super-sized Coke totaling in at 1,550 calories.
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    Quote Originally Posted by suncloud View Post
    Growth for the French fry was not over.
    Definitely interesting. Although I have to admit, the above line makes me giggle uncontrolably.
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    this is what I want to see come in my value meal


    Outback Steakhouse Aussie Cheese Fries with Ranch Dressing

    2,900 calories
    182 g fat 240 g carbs
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    That's nothing. Go to http://thisiswhyyourefat.com/ and weep for our future.

    Actually some of the things on there, scaled back a bit in size, look damn good. Anyways, check out the Mc GangBang.

    Quote Originally Posted by EasyEJL View Post
    this is what I want to see come in my value meal


    Outback Steakhouse Aussie Cheese Fries with Ranch Dressing

    2,900 calories
    182 g fat 240 g carbs
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    man this food is making me ill
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    Quote Originally Posted by AE14 View Post
    man this food is making me ill
    Pretty amazing, isn't it? That website is the only viable argument against capitalism I've ever come across. Sometimes you can take plenty to an extreme and you get... that.
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    the 2lbs mcdonalds cheesburger was revolting. Or the deep fried cabdury creme egg? sh!t
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