Fri. Feb 26th, 2021

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Is there a predisposition to obesity?

6 min read

Nutritionists argue that the tendency to overweight is determined by family habits, psychologists point to the attitude to food and your own body, genetics remind us of a science-proven predisposition to obesity. Many weight gainers find it easier to agree with geneticists and admit that fullness is not their fault, but a fact to be reconciled with. But which of the experts is really right? In each of the hypotheses of the appearance of excess weight there is some truth, those who want to lose weight need to learn how to use it.

The figure of a person depends not only on his diet and degree of physical activity. A genetic predisposition to obesity exists, as well as to other common diseases. But this does not mean that all owners of extra pounds have this predisposition, many simply do not have the willpower and desire to take on themselves. In many families there is a cult of food, as a rule, people from these families differ in considerable size. How to understand what is the cause of the appearance of fatty deposits – in the work of genes or the characteristics of nutrition and lifestyle?

About genes

Even from biology classes at school, we remember that the genome is the part of the DNA chain that encodes proteins. Genes are characterized by polymorphism, which means that the same gene can have several working variations. All genes are presented in a pair of copies, one we get from the mother, the other from the father.

Scientists have identified and proven the association of the FTO gene with the accumulation of body fat, but this depends on the working variation. Carriers of option A have a hereditary predisposition to type 2 diabetes mellitus, an increased body mass index (BMI) and obesity. One study showed that 49% of participants had just such a variation in one of the copies of the gene, all of these people were overweight and sought to get rid of it, but the average increase in BMI was insignificant. A strong excess of the norm in BMI was recorded in those people where both copies of the gene were presented in this variation. Their representation among the participants was 33%. It turns out that in almost half the genetic factor actually adds weight, in a third of cases it has a strong influence.

In half of the situations, the cause is not the lack of willpower, but a disrupted control system by the brain. If the system works correctly, then when saturated with food in the blood, the concentration of the hormone leptin jumps, this mechanism, by disabling appetite, prevents overeating. But if the system does not work correctly, then the brain will not receive a signal of satiety, a person will continue to eat, eat much more than is required, and will certainly face consequences.

Entire families suffer from this, from grandparents to young children. Family traditions and habits are not always to blame, such a hereditary ailment actually exists. There are currently no drugs that could compensate for a gene disorder. In moments of despair, overweight people might think that nature thus joked with them. But there is no joke in this, body fat and mechanisms for managing them are a prerequisite for the survival of mankind.

the family is predisposed to obesity

Why do we need fat?

The normal representation of adipose tissue in the female body is up to 30%, in men – up to 20%. This fabric performs many functions, one of which is strategically important – energy. By oxidizing one gram of fat, the body receives 9.3 kcal of energy, that is, with a healthy body weight, a person stores a reserve of up to one hundred thousand kilocalories. Such a reserve is enough to maintain life during a forty-day fast.

An equally important function is hormonal, it is especially important to know about this for girls in their teens. Puberty will not occur until the body has gained the right amount of adipose tissue. For this reason, in thin teenage girls, menstruation comes later, they are often painful and irregular. Adipose tissue plays an important role in the process of bearing a child, as well as in childbirth. The appearance of excess weight during pregnancy is not accidental, but natural, during childbirth a woman spends a huge amount of energy, the body assumes energy costs and prepares for them.

subcutaneous fat

What to do with this information?

Having learned that an imperfect figure may be the result of a hereditary predisposition, one does not need to put up with its fullness. The hereditary predisposition to obesity does not oblige you to carry dozens of extra pounds; these are just factors that you need to consider when planning a diet and training.

Science knows several types of eating behavior due to a genetic factor. The first is always mentioned the love of sweets, in this case it is not just a matter of taste, but an uncontrolled craving for a sweet taste, on the basis of which a habit is formed. People with variations of a gene called TAS1R3 suffer from this, an innocuous craze for the sweet always becomes an addiction for them. The fact is that this gene dulls the sensitivity of the receptors to a sweet taste, they do not give such a powerful signal as in people without this gene. In this case, a smooth transition to proper nutrition is recommended, the rejection of sweets should not be sharp, but soft, for example, through fruits.

Heredity is also due to the habit of snacking and the severity of a feeling of fullness, these are interrelated phenomena. Nutritionists often recommend the principle of fractional nutrition for weight loss, genetics recognize that in most cases they are right. It turned out that many people are naturally inclined towards fractional nutrition, but do not know about it. They have a need for frequent meals, but there is no need to make these meals too satisfying, the fact that something has got into the stomach is important.

With the transition to fractional nutrition, the daily caloric intake of the diet will significantly decrease, this will certainly affect the figure.

The need for food and its perception, the formation of satiety and appetite are complex physiological processes on which not only the digestive tract, but also the nervous system works. Focusing on your own characteristics, you can identify weaknesses that need constant monitoring.

What are you predisposed to?

Why diets, the effectiveness of which is recognized worldwide, do not help everyone? Why are there overweight people among vegetarians? Because it is important to take into account the features laid down at the genetic level. If your fullness is the result of carbohydrate abuse, then the transition to vegetarianism will only increase their representation in the diet and will not help to lose weight. If excess weight is a consequence of a special metabolism of fats, then the famous keto diet will only make you fuller.

That is why someone can eat pasta at night, and someone eats a huge amount of fat cheese per day without the risk of gaining kilograms. To determine if you are predisposed to being overweight is only possible in one way — through a genetic test. Now you can conduct such tests in any of the medical laboratories.

The results of DNA testing will confirm or refute the presence of a predisposition to obesity, indicate which aspects to pay special attention to. But it is important to understand that being overweight is not only genetics, but also a way of life. There is no nutritionist or geneticist who, in the absence of dangerous heredity, will allow you to overeat sweets and spend all time in a sitting position.

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