After the holidays, one of the first targets for many will be to lose the weight accumulated by the excesses of the meals. More than one of us will return to their daily routine with a few extra pounds. Thus, for many of us, the first goals of the year will be to lose the weight accumulated by the excesses of Christmas. But beware, you have to keep in mind that losing the weight that gained during the holidays is not the difficult task, but maintain the ideal weight in the long term is very important. This is what the experts point out that part of our heritage could contribute to making it more or less difficult to achieve weight loss and maintain.
HOW TO CUSTOMIZE WEIGHT LOSS PROGRAMS:
Half of the variation in size and weight among people is attributed to the genetic makeup of each one, which also intervenes to some extent in the body’s response to weight loss or gain. So far different genes and metabolic pathways related to the risk of obesity, and other weight-related traits have been identified.
The importance of knowing and understanding the influence of genes on metabolism and weight as well as the growing problem of obesity in some societies has led to the possibility of using genomic information to customize weight loss programs. With this idea, different US health institutes participated in the creation of a working group to review the genetic factors involved in weight loss and gain and to identify the challenges and prospects of incorporating genomics into new strategies for treatment. The findings and conclusions of the working group have just been published in a review in the journal Obesity.
“Obesity researchers have made tremendous strides in our understanding of what drives eating behavior, how fat tissue cells form, and how the metabolism is altered before and after the onset of obesity,” says Molly Bray, a professor. Of Nutrition Sciences at the University of Texas at Austin. “It is time to take a large amount of data and find ways to more effectively apply it in treatments for obesity and other related conditions, including diabetes, cardiovascular disease, and cancer.” In the future, knowing a person’s genomic information could help customize your weight-loss program.
Researchers indicate that despite the multiple genetic variants associated with variables related to body volume and body weight, it is possible that the measures or phenotypes collected may not be adequate to capture all associated genetic variability, suggesting that new Phenotypes or variables be studied more informative.
Regarding the use of genetic variants to predict the response to treatments for obesity, after reviewing different studies, we can conclude in the existence of evidence that the genetic composition of an individual can influence the effectiveness of strategies to lose weight.
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The work also evaluates the participation in the loss or gain of weight of other systems of regulation of energy balance in the organism: epigenetic mechanisms such as DNA methylation or modification of histones, acting as intermediaries between the environment and the genome To modulate the risk to obesity, or the microbiome, which may intervene in the ability to metabolize the nutrients obtained from the diet.
We can consider different behaviors that can mediate between genomic variation and measures of body size or body mass and review available information on the genetics of behavioral habits in relation to food, food preferences, and physical activity.
Another section of the article is devoted to evaluating whether genomic data obtained in relation to metabolism and other aspects that affect body weight could be implemented in a clinical setting to customize weight loss programs. In this case, we should consider as critical to the success of such incorporation, not only the biological understanding of mechanisms that connect genes and weight, but also the ability to communicate strategy to patients and motivate a change in their behavior. “In order to advance in the field of personalized weight loss, a combination of the individual’s genotype, along with the unique underlying path physiology, should be used to develop dietary and physical activity recommendations that target each person’s metabolism.
Finally, we will outline the future prospects for incorporating genomics into personalized weight loss plans. At this point, it is necessary to improve the competence and knowledge in genetics and genomics, on the part of clinicians and health personnel as well as patients and their families. In addition, they point out that with the recent technological improvements it will be easier to obtain information from patients at different levels (genomic, metabolic, demographic), which increases the demand for innovative studies in the field.
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Points out that although prevention would undoubtedly be the best approach, there are now millions of obese individuals who need effective long-term strategies to lose weight and improve their health. “When people hear that there are genes that could play a role in the success of their weight loss they do not say ‘Great, I do not need to exercise ever again’ but they actually say ‘Thank you. Finally, someone recognizes that it is more difficult for me than for others, “says the researcher. “Then I think they are a bit more lenient with themselves and are more motivated to make a change.”