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Journal of Obesity focuses on topics such as obesity, lipid metabolism, metabolic syndrome, diabetes, paediatric obesity, genetics, nutrition & eating disorders, exercise & human physiology, weight control and risks associated with obesity.
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Linkage between Neighborhood Social Cohesion and BMI of South Asians in the Masala Study
Introduction. South Asians in the United States have a high prevalence of obesity and an elevated risk for cardiometabolic diseases. Yet, little is known about how aspects of neighborhood environment influence cardiometabolic risk factors such as body mass index (BMI) in this rapidly growing population. We aimed to investigate the association between perceived neighborhood social cohesion and BMI among South Asians. Methods. We utilized cross-sectional data from the MASALA study, a prospective community-based cohort of 906 South Asian men and women from the San Francisco Bay area and the greater Chicago area. Multivariable linear regression models, stratified by sex, were used to examine the association between perceived level of neighborhood social cohesion and individual BMI after adjusting for sociodemographics. Results. Participants were 54% male, with an average age of 55 years, 88% had at least a bachelor’s degree, and the average BMI was 26.0 kg/m2. South Asian women living in neighborhoods with the lowest social cohesion had a significantly higher BMI than women living in neighborhoods with the highest cohesion (β coefficient = 1.48, 95% CI 0.46–2.51, ); however, the association was not statistically significant after adjusting for sociodemographic factors (β coefficient = 1.06, 95% CI −0.01–2.13, ). There was no association between level of neighborhood social cohesion and BMI in South Asian men. Conclusion. Perceived neighborhood social cohesion was not significantly associated with BMI among South Asians in our study sample. Further research is recommended to explore whether other neighborhood characteristics may be associated with BMI and other health outcomes in South Asians and the mechanisms through which neighborhood may influence health.
Sociodemographic and Lifestyle Factors in relation to Overweight Defined by BMI and “Normal-Weight Obesity”
Sociodemographic factors and lifestyle habits affect body weight and body composition. A new syndrome, called normal-weight obesity (NWO), is found in individuals with normal weight and excess body fat in contrast to lean and overweight individuals. The aim of the present study was to explore the associations between sociodemographic factors and smoking and alcohol habits and lower versus higher BMI (≥25 kg/m2) and to examine whether categorization into lean, NWO, and overweight leads to further information about sociodemographic and lifestyle associations, compared with the common categorization defined by BMI. A cohort of 17,724 participants (9,936 females, 56.1%) from the EpiHealth study, with a median age of 61 (53–67) years, was examined. The participants answered a questionnaire about lifestyle, and weight and fat percentage were measured. Associations between sociodemographic factors and lifestyle habits and lower versus higher BMI, and lean versus NWO or lean and NWO versus overweight were calculated by binary logistic regression. Male sex, age, sick leave/disability, married/cohabitating, divorced/widowed, former smoking, and a high alcohol consumption were associated with higher BMI, whereas higher education and frequent alcohol consumption were inversely associated (all ). The associations were similar to associations with lean versus overweight and NWO versus overweight, except for age in the latter case. Associations with lean versus NWO differed from those of lower versus higher BMI, with an association with retirement, an inverse association with male sex (OR, 0.664; 95% confidence interval, 0.591–0.746), and no associations with marital status, smoking, and alcohol consumption frequency. Associations with age and occupation were sex dependent, in contrast to other variables examined. Thus, sociodemographic and lifestyle habits showed similar associations with lower versus higher BMI as with lean and NWO versus overweight, whereas lean versus NWO showed different directions of associations regarding sex, marital status, occupation, smoking, and frequency of alcohol consumption.
Maximum Phonation Time in People with Obesity Not Submitted or Submitted to Bariatric Surgery
Background. Our aim in this investigation was to evaluate maximum phonation time in people with obesity not submitted to surgery and in people with obesity submitted to bariatric surgery and compare it with maximum phonation time of healthy volunteers. The hypothesis was that the reduced maximum phonation time in people with obesity would be corrected after surgery due to weight loss. Method. Maximum phonation time was evaluated in 52 class III patients (Group A), 62 class III patients who were treated by surgery 3 to 115 months before (Group B), 20 controls (Group C), and 15 class III patients whose maximum phonation time was evaluated before and two to six months after surgery (Group D). Maximum phonation time was measured in the sitting position with the vowels /A/, /I/, and /U/. Results. Maximal phonation time was shorter in groups A and B compared with that of controls. There was an increase in maximal phonation time after surgery (Group B); however, the difference was not significant when compared with that in group A. In group D, maximal phonation time for /A/ increased after the surgery. In group A, there was a negative correlation between maximal phonation time and weight or body mass index and a positive correlation between maximal phonation time and height. In group B, there was an almost significant positive relation between percentage of weight loss and maximal phonation time for /A/ () and /I/ (). Mean values of spirometry testing (FEV1, FVC, and FEV1/FVC) in people with obesity (groups A and B), expressed as percentage of the predicted value, were within the normal range. Conclusion. Compared with healthy controls, maximal phonation time is shorter in people with obesity, with a tendency to increase after bariatric surgery, as a possible consequence of weight loss.
Total and Compartmental Chest Wall Volumes, Lung Function, and Respiratory Muscle Strength in Individuals with Abdominal Obesity: Effects of Body Positions
Background. Abdominal obesity is a chronic condition that can contribute to impairments in lung function, leading to increased risks for respiratory-related diseases. Body position is an important technique that effectively restores and increases lung function and chest wall volumes. The objective of the current study was to examine the effects of the body positions on total and compartmental chest wall volumes, lung function, and respiratory muscle strength in individuals with and without abdominal obesity. Methods. Twenty obesity and twenty healthy males performed in four body position including sitting without and with back support, Fowler's, and supine positions. Each position was performed for five minutes. Chest wall volumes, lung function, and respiratory muscle strength were assessed in each position. Results. Sitting without and with back support resulted in higher total and rib cage compartmental chest wall volumes, lung function, and inspiratory muscle strength than Fowler’s and supine positions in both groups (). Abdominal obesity subjects had significantly less total and compartmental chest wall volumes and lung function across four body positions than healthy subjects (). Respiratory muscle strength in the obesity group was less than that in the healthy control group (). Conclusions. This study provides new information regarding the effect of obesity and body position on chest wall volumes, lung function, and respiratory muscle strength. Among obesity individuals who are bedridden, sitting increases lung function, total and rib cage compartmental chest wall volumes, and inspiratory muscle strength—and would therefore likely to decrease the risk of respiratory-related disease—relative to Fowler’s and supine positions.
The Impact of Step Recommendations on Body Composition and Physical Activity Patterns in College Freshman Women: A Randomized Trial
Purpose. Transitioning from high school to college generally results in reduced physical activity and weight gain at a rate that is higher than the general population. The purpose of this study was to examine the effects of three progressively higher step recommendations over 24 weeks on changes in body weight and body composition. Methods. Ninety-two freshmen college women wore a multifunction pedometer for 24 weeks after being randomly assigned to a daily step level: 10,000, 12,500, or 15,000. Pedometer data were downloaded every two weeks and participants were counseled on meeting their step recommendation. Body weight and body composition were assessed at baseline and 24 weeks. Body composition was assessed by dual X-ray absorptiometry. Results. On average, women took 10,786 ± 1501, 12,650 ± 2001, and 13,762 ± 2098 steps per day for the 10,000-, 12,500-, and 15,000-step groups, respectively (F = 15.48, ). Participants gained 1.4 ± 2.6, 1.8 ± 2.1, and 1.4 ± 2.1 kg for the 10,000-, 12,500-, and 15,000-step groups, respectively (F = 37.74, ). Weight gain was not significantly different between groups (F = 0.18, ). There was also no difference in fat weight gain (F = 0.41, ). Discussion. A step recommendation beyond 10,000 does not prevent weight or fat gain over the first year of college. Future research should focus on either intensity of physical activity or the addition of dietary interventions to prevent weight gain during the first year of college.
Influence of Parent Stressors on Adolescent Obesity in African American Youth
Objective. The purpose of this study was to examine the relationships between individual parent stressors (financial, legal, career, relationships, home safety, community safety, medical, housing, authority, and prejudice) and adolescent obesity in African American adolescents. Methods. Data were from a cross section convenience sample of 273 African American parent-child dyads (ages 11–19) from Washtenaw County, Michigan. A subset of 122 dyads who completed parent and child questionnaires were included in this analysis. Parent stressors were assessed using the Crisis in Family Systems Revised (CRISYS-R) questionnaire. Height, weight, and waist circumference were measured by trained staff; height and weight were converted to BMI. Multivariate linear regression models were used to examine the relationships between individual parent stressors and adolescent BMI and waist circumference. Results. Parental exposure to stressors related to safety in the community was positively associated with adolescent BMI (β = 1.20(0.47), ) and waist circumference (β = 2.86(1.18), ). Parental appraisal of stressors related to safety in the community as “difficult to get through” was positively associated with adolescent BMI (β = 0.39(0.14), ) and waist circumference (β = 1.00(0.35), ). These relationships remained significant when adjusting for behavioral and psychosocial covariates. There were no significant relationships observed between other parent stressors and adolescent BMI or waist circumference. Conclusion. These findings suggest parents’ exposure and appraisal of stressors related to community safety are associated with increased adolescent obesity in African American youth. Longitudinal, larger-scale studies are needed to better understand the mechanisms by which community safety may increase obesity risk in this ethnic minority pediatric population. This trail is registered with NCT02938663.