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Letter from the Executive Director
Now that the summer season is upon us, many of us are vacationing, approaching it or wishing for it, which also means thoughts of our November 2014 annual meeting, ObesityWeek℠, are far from our minds. Not so for your Program Committee, Executive Committee, Council, Committees, Sections and TOS staff, as they have been working hard to make ObesityWeek 2014 in Boston an extraordinary event.
The weeklong meeting promises world-class, cutting-edge obesity science.
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TOS sends support to FDA on all proposed changes to food nutrition facts labels
TOS recently submitted comments in response to the U.S. Food and Drug Administration's (FDA) proposed changes to food nutrition labels, calling the revisions an important step toward helping Americans better understand nutrition information. According to the FDA, the goal of the proposed changes to the Nutrition Facts label is "not to tell people what they should be eating, but to expand and highlight the information they most need when making food choices."
TOS endorses all four of the proposed changes to the current Nutrition Facts label.
Several other minor changes have been proposed, including making servings per package more prominent, updating "Daily Values" and including amounts of potassium and Vitamin D. You can read all of TOS's comments on the proposed changes here.
- "Serving Size" will be adjusted to more accurately reflect what people normally consume.
- "Calories" will be made much more prominent.
- "Added Sugars" will be reported.
- "Total Fat" will no longer be reported.
Reminder: TOS's abstract submission site for ObesityWeek℠ 2014 closes June 2
Time is running out to submit your abstracts for oral and poster presentations at ObesityWeek 2014! The abstract submission site remains open through June 2.
Each year, ObesityWeek highlights cutting-edge findings across a broad range of topics — from the basic science of obesity, to treatment and prevention. You won't want to miss this prestigious opportunity to present your research to your esteemed colleagues, industry, media, state and federal health authorities and the public.
Find a full list of instructions for submitting your abstracts here, and access the submission site here.
Don't forget to also submit your research to the 2nd Annual Obesity Symposium at ObesityWeek 2014! The editors will select six winning papers and the session will be promoted to the obesity research community and to the press. In addition, the papers will be published in a special section of the November 2014 issue of Obesity. The deadline for online manuscript submission is June 1. To be considered for the Obesity Symposium, please submit your manuscript online on or before June 1 here. You can submit a full paper version of the abstract you are submitting, or a different study manuscript.
TOS and Weight Watchers launch the Karen Miller-Kovach Research Grant
Weight Watchers and TOS are pleased to announce the Karen Miller-Kovach Research Grant, developed in partnership to award one young investigator a research grant of $40,000 for a one-year period. The grant focuses on the development of a scalable, behavioral weight-loss intervention that includes digital tools.
All members of TOS (domestic or international), at all career levels are eligible for the grant. Applications from post-doctoral research fellows must have a mentor who is a current TOS member and be a member in their own right.
Applications should be submitted to TOS by 11:59 a.m. ET on Monday, June 30.
For additional details regarding this grant, please review the contents here.
For questions beyond the website, contact Jean McMahon via email at firstname.lastname@example.org or at 240-485-1955 by phone.
Is the Obesity Journal your top choice?
Under the stellar leadership of the young and enthusiastic editorial team, Obesity has made major progress during the past year. The journal editors share information about these positive changes in an editorial in the June issue, and report that any prior publishing delays are now issues of the past.
Here's why: First, the journal is now publishing early (the online version posts a few days prior to the month of publication). Second, it has completely eliminated the backlog that contributed to past delays. Lastly, if you submit your paper to Obesity, you will quickly hear a decision on your acceptance. The vast majority of manuscripts receive a decision in less than a month!
Obesity is now considered to be one of the fastest journals in the field of obesity, nutrition and endocrinology when it comes to processing submitted manuscripts. If you haven't submitted to the journal recently, the editors would be delighted to have you back and look forward to a bright future for your research efforts and for the publication. Log in here to submit your paper today!
Can peanuts play a role in dietary recommendations for weight loss?
Contributed by Susan F. Franks, Ph.D., ABPP
A recent study by Alves and colleagues published in the Obesity journal found that the inclusion of peanuts, particularly those high in oleic acid, may result in additional health benefits over a dietary weight loss regimen that is not peanut-enriched. In this study, 65 men with overweight or obesity were randomly assigned to one of three dietary conditions: energy restriction plus conventional peanuts, energy restriction plus peanuts high in oleic acid or energy restriction without peanuts (control group).
The prescribed amount of daily caloric intake in the peanut-enriched groups was reduced by the energy supplied in 56 grams of peanuts to remain comparable to the control group. While all three groups lost a similarly significant amount of weight over the four-week intervention, both of the peanut-enriched groups also reduced total body fat mass and showed improvements in fasting fat oxidation.
Only the high-oleic peanut group showed a significant reduction in percentage of total body fat and an increase in the total percentage of lean mass. While more research is needed, this study adds to a growing body of literature demonstrating the potential metabolic benefits of peanuts in the treatment of obesity and its comorbidities. Read the full article in Obesity journal here.
Body fat heightens 'fight or flight' activation
Contributed by Shu Wen Ng, Ph.D.
A recent study by Hillibrand and colleagues published in the Obesity journal found that body fat, especially visceral fat (fat that accumulates within the abdominal cavity around organs) is associated with greater sympathetic, or "fight or flight," activation. In the study, researchers measured the various types of body fat using magnetic resonance imaging (MRI), and calculated sympathetic activation using heart rate and various electrocardiographic measurements. After excluding participants with any pre-existing cardiovascular disease (CVD) or cardiac abnormalities, they had a study sample of 868 adults.
In their analyses, the researchers found that body fat was positively associated with heart rate and two measures of sympathetic activation. Specifically, the associations between visceral fat and measures of sympathetic activation were the strongest.
This indicates that fat stores within the abdomen do not only differ by location, but also in function. Since the study participants had structurally normal hearts, these findings imply that even before the onset of CVD, excess abdominal fat is associated with heighted physiological stress-response. Read the full article in the Obesity journal here.
Calling all professors: Help us spread the word about TOS's free student membership
Did you know it's free for undergraduate students, graduate students or postdoctoral associates within three years of graduation to become a student member of TOS? Students and recent grads wishing to join must complete the membership application form online, and provide a letter from their supervisor or mentor on institutional letterhead confirming their status as a student or recent graduate.
TOS student members have access to:
Tell your students to fill out an application today!
- Resources for early-career investigators, including unique mentoring opportunities
- TOS's Awards and Grants Programs
- TOS's online membership directory, your networking source for medical and scientific obesity professionals
- Leadership and networking opportunities in your field
- Discounts on registration fees for ObesityWeek
eHealth/mHealth Reading Corner
To keep the community up to date on the developments in this important area, TOS eHealth/mHealth Section is sharing the latest research in its eHealth/mHealth Reading Corner. This week's articles include:
Tate EB, Spruijt-Metz D, O'Reilly G, Jordan-Marsh M, Gotsis M, Pentz MA, Dunto GF. mHealth approaches to child obesity prevention: successes, unique challenges, and next directions. Translational Behavioral Medicine 2013 Dec; 3(4):406-415. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24294329
If you have an article you would like to share, we would love to hear from you! Please send article information to Anne Gilmore (email@example.com), and we'll add it to the EMS Reading Corner Library.
Conroy DE, Yang CH, Maher JP. Behavior change techniques in top-ranked mobile apps for physical activity. American Journal of Preventive Medicine. 2014 June;46(6):649-652. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24842742
Shaw RJ, Steinberg DM, Zulig LL, Bosworth HB, Johnson CM, Davis LL. mHealth interventions for weight loss: a guide for achieving treatment fidelity. Journal of the American Medical Informatics Association. 2014 May; Ahead of print. http://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/24853065#
Americans increasingly supportive of anti-discrimination laws for obesity
A recent survey of public opinion showed that a majority of the American public favors laws that would limit discrimination against people with obesity. At least 75 percent of survey participants said they support laws that would limit discrimination based on body weight in the workplace, with views growing more favorable in recent years. Most study participants also said that body weight should be protected from discrimination by additions to civil rights statutes.
Diet soda and weight loss: New study reignites debate
Diet beverages can help you lose weight, according to a new paper published today in the journal Obesity. The results contradict a number of other recent studies that indicated drinking diet soda may actually cause a person to gain weight. The new study, which was fully funded by the American Beverage Association, looked at whether drinks such as Coke Zero, Diet Dr. Pepper and Diet Snapple might help people lose more weight than drinking water alone.
Michelle Obama hits GOP over school lunch plan
First lady Michelle Obama stepped into the political/policy arena recently, criticizing House Republicans over a plan to permit exceptions to new federal nutrition standards for school lunches. Citing the rising incidence of obesity among children and adults, the first lady said "the last thing we can afford to do right now is play politics with our kids' health" and "now is not the time to roll back everything we have worked for."
Poor economy has fueled obesity rates, study finds
A new report suggests that obesity rates are spiraling in developed countries, thanks in part to the global economic slowdown of the past few years. A report from the Organization for Economic Cooperation and Development says that sharper increases in obesity rates have been observed in women and the poor, and in countries such as France, Australia, Switzerland and Mexico, where the obesity rate climbs by as much as 3 percent a year.
Obesity gene may explain why some women gain weight as they age
U.S. News & World Report
A defective gene linked to obesity appears to affect impulse control and food choices. And this could explain why people with the gene have so much trouble maintaining a healthy weight as they age, a new U.S. study says. Middle-aged and older people with obesity-associated variants of the FTO gene tend to gain weight, according to researchers from the National Institutes of Health.
Is this the reason America keeps gaining weight?
The Huffington Post
When it comes to how economic factors play a role in the U.S. obesity epidemic, no factor may be as strong as the increased availability of cheap food, according to a new review. The review, published in CA: A Cancer Journal For Clinicians, examines all the different potential causes — including fast food, portion sizes, TV time, car use, etc. — of rising obesity rates. While all of these likely play a role, researchers found that the association is strongest between availability of inexpensive food and obesity.
US obesity rate hits a costly new high
The Fiscal Times via Yahoo News
The percentage of obese Americans has grown to its highest rate in at least five years. A new survey from Gallup shows that obesity has ticked up to 27.7 percent, up from 27 percent last year. The rate was 25.5 percent in 2008, when Gallup began tracking it.
Obesity tops tobacco as No. 1 global health threat, UN says
San Francisco Chronicle
The U.N.'s leading voice on hunger has declared that the international community must mobilize to combat obesity and unhealthy diets, not a lack of food, and called on U.N. members to rally around a "bold framework" of regulations limiting access to salty, sugary foods that are high in saturated fats and contribute to obesity.
The Obesity Society eNews
Mollie Turner, News Editor, The Obesity Society
Colby Horton, Vice President of Publishing, 469.420.2601
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Caitlin Harrison, Content Editor, 469.420.2657
Disclaimer: eNews is a digest of the most important news selected for The Obesity Society from thousands of sources by the editors of MultiBriefs, an independent organization that also manages and sells advertising. The Obesity Society does not endorse any of the advertised products and services. Opinions expressed in the articles are those of the author and not of The Obesity Society.
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