New IOM Report: Solving “The Weight of the Nation”

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This week in Washington, at the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention’s 2012 WEIGHT OF THE NATION conference, the Institute of Medicine released a new report, “Accelerating Progress in Obesity Prevention: Solving the Weight of the Nation.”

The report, which is available online (and which includes a link to a nifty infographic) sets out five goals that, if met, would ensure we as a nation don’t falter in our fight against the obesity epidemic:

  • Integrate physical activity every day in every way
  • Market what matters for a healthy life
  • Make healthy foods and beverages available everywhere
  • Activate employers and health care professionals
  • Strengthen schools as the heart of health

The report also urges all sectors of society to work together to achieve these goals.

These goals have been laid out before, in slightly different language, by local, state and federal agencies and health organizations — including cancer charities like AICR (because preventing obesity would mean preventing approximately 100,000 US cancers every year). Read more… “New IOM Report: Solving “The Weight of the Nation””

Can Substituting Sweet Beverages Help You Lose Weight?

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The news that sugary drinks link to being overweight is not new. Back in 2007, AICR’s report concluded there was enough evidence on the link to recommend that we all avoid  sugary beverages.

But suppose all you did was switch out a couple of your sweetened beverages for a diet soda or water? You may lose a few pounds, suggests a new study. The study is among a handful of randomized trials to look at how changing beverages effects weight loss.

You can read the abstract of the study here.

The 318 study participants were all overweight and all drank over 200 calories per day of sugary beverages, such as sodas, sports drinks, and juice. Participants were randomly split into three groups: one group replaced their sweet beverages with water; another group replaced them with diet beverages; the third group, called the Healthy Choice group, was not directed to alter their beverages but they were given general weight-loss information at monthly meetings. (All three groups attended monthly meetings, which is when the two beverage-substituting groups received their drinks.) Read more… “Can Substituting Sweet Beverages Help You Lose Weight?”

Diabetes (Belt) Woes

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If you’re a regular AICR reader, you likely know there’s now a strong body of research linking diabetes to cancer risk. (A review of the evidence last year found that people with diabetes are approximately twice as likely to get cancers of the liver, pancreas and endometrium.)

But the research showing the dangers of diabetes keeps emerging. One of those studies is highlighted in today’s issue of Cancer Research Update. The study found that people with type 2 diabetes were at increased risk of premature death from cancer, but they were also more likely to have a mental disease, along with many other health disorders. Kidney disease, pneumonia, and nervous-system disorders were a few of the other ills cited.

A 50-year-old with diabetes died, on average, six years earlier than his/her counterpart without the disorder.

And although the incidence of diabetes keeps growing throughout the United States, another study has identified a group of southern states and a handful of its neighbors as the diabetes belt of our country. This belt includes portions of the states of Alabama, Arkansas, Florida, Georgia, Kentucky, Louisiana, North Carolina, Ohio, Pennsylvania, South Carolina, Tennessee, Texas, Virginia, and West Virginia, as well as the entire state of Mississippi.

The study was published in the April issue of the American Journal of Preventive Medicine.

Obesity and sedentary lifestyle were two factors greater in the diabetes belt compared to the rest of the country. And these factors are modifiable.

For tips on eating healthy and moving more, visit our Reduce Your Risk.