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Mon, Feb. 24

Breaking news: Swine Flu and obesity. What's the connection?

Courtesy art

Courtesy art

Hello Simply Fit readers. One of my favorite morning rituals is to scan the Internet for the newest health and fitness news. Some days are more exciting than others because of the same studies being done over and over again at the cost of taxpayers.

For example, I really don't need another double blind study that cost $1.2 million and seven years to confirm that eating more fruits and vegetables will help me to be healthier. My mom has been telling me that since I was in diapers. However, every once in a while I will come across an article that catches my interest and is worth sharing. Here are a few examples.

A high percentage of people who became infected and then died from the swine flu were obese or they were extremely obese. Scientists are not sure if obesity itself was the main factor or if an underlying condition such as asthma was the culprit, but the Centers for Disease Control is warning health care providers that they are to be aware of this new finding.

I'm not one to go around yelling, "The sky is falling, the sky is falling," but being proactive from a potentially deadly virus is the least we can do to protect ourselves and our loved ones. Following is just one more reason to reach a healthy weight!

A new study, which the Journal of the American Dietetic Association published, finds that people who eat more carbohydrates are thinner than those who eat less carbohydrates. The study looked at 4,500 people and asked them to recall what they had eaten in the past 24 hours. The study concluded that the people who ate 47 percent to 64 percent of their calories from carbohydrates were the leanest. The study also confirmed that those who ate more carbohydrates also ate more fruits, vegetables, and consumed more fiber than those who ate fewer carbohydrates. The high carbohydrate group also ate more sugar but that sugar may have come from fruits, not empty calorie foods such as soda or candy.

Carbohydrates are not the enemy people. The enemies are too many calories, not enough moving around, too much saturated and trans fats, and eating processed foods that are laden with salt and preservatives.

Researchers at Indiana University discovered a new weight loss cure ... in mice. This new cure is an injection of glucagon - which is a hormone the pancreas releases and causes a release of stored glucose to be used as fuel - and the drug Byetta, which has been FDA approved for years as a way of treating diabetes. The injection of these two substances in one shot caused the mice to lose 42 percent of their fat mass in one week! Talk about a quick fix. Don't get too excited folks. Remember the excitement that scientists created when they found that injecting mice with the hormone leptin caused mice to lose weight? We are not mice and we are years away from this new wonder drug from being available.

So now you're up to date with some of the latest health news. I hope you are all enjoying the summer of 2009. Please feel free to contact me on my blog or email me at I'd love to hear your comments or questions. Peace be with you.

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