Research targets biologic profile of obesity

New Orleans, LA Obesity has reached epidemic proportions in America due to a number of factors including increased technology and the rise in consumption of prepared and preserved foods. Finding a solution has been a major challenge for researchers, but according to two studies presented today at Digestive Disease Week in New Orleans, significant progress has been made in finding the underlying characteristics of obesity. Digestive Disease Week (DDW) is the largest international gathering of physicians, researchers and academics in the fields of gastroenterology, hepatology, endoscopy and gastrointestinal surgery.

"Obesity is one of the most serious risk factors for some of the leading causes of death in Americans today, such as heart disease," said Barbara Bass, M.D., of the University of Maryland School of Medicine. "Finding its basic biological conditions may offer scientists better tools with which to fight this chronic condition."

Exaggerated Gastric Accommodation in Patients with Obesity (Abstract 105214*)
Overeating is one of the primary causes of obesity. For patients suffering from morbid obesity, new research suggests that exaggerated gastric accommodation to meals may be to blame for the continued struggle against weight loss, according to researchers from the Union Hospital of Tongji Medical College in China.

The results of the study showed that obese patients eat more during meals than people at a healthy weight before experiencing a feeling of fullness, due to an increased minimal distending pressure and an exaggerated gastric accommodation. The mean value of minimal distending pressure, reflecting intra-abdominal pressure, was significantly elevated in obese patients, as compared with the healthy controls, as was the postprandial (after a meal) increase in gastric volume. No significant difference was noted in gastric compliance between the two.

"We believe this could help explain some of the b


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