Exercise Causes Epigenetic Changes To Fat Cells

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Altered DNA methylation as a result of physical activity could be one of the mechanisms of how these genes affect the risk of disease.

 

Exercise, even in small doses, changes the expression of our innate DNA. New research from Lund University in Sweden has described for the first time what happens on an epigenetic level in fat cells when we undertake physical activity.

“Our study shows the positive effects of exercise, because the epigenetic pattern of genes that affect fat storage in the body changes”, says Charlotte Ling, Associate Professor at Lund University Diabetes Centre.

The cells of the body contain DNA, which contains genes. We inherit our genes and they cannot be changed. The genes, however, have ‘methyl groups’ attached which affect what is known as ‘gene expression’ – whether the genes are activated or deactivated. The methyl groups can be influenced in various ways, through exercise, diet and lifestyle, in a process known as ‘DNA methylation’. This is epigenetics, a relatively new research field that in recent years has attracted more and more attention.

In the study, the researchers investigated what happened to the methyl groups in the fat cells of 23 slightly overweight, healthy men aged around 35 who had not previously engaged in any physical activity, when they regularly attended spinning and aerobics classes over a six-month period.

“They were supposed to attend three sessions a week, but they went on average 1.8 times”, says Tina Rönn, Associate Researcher at Lund University.

Using technology that analyses 480,000 positions throughout the genome, they could see that epigenetic changes had taken place in 7,000 genes (an individual has 20–25 000 genes). They then went on to look specifically at the methylation in genes linked to type 2 diabetes and obesity.

“We found changes in those genes too, which suggests that altered DNA methylation as a result of physical activity could be one of the mechanisms of how these genes affect the risk of disease”, says Tina Rönn, adding that this has never before been studied in fat cells and that they now have a map of the DNA methylome in fat.

In the laboratory, the researchers were able to confirm the findings in vitro (studying cell cultures in test tubes) by deactivating certain genes and thus reducing their expression. This resulted in changes in fat storage in fat cells.

 

19 Is the New 60

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Activity levels at the end of adolescence were alarmingly low, and by age 19, they were comparable to 60-year-olds

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A child in motion tends to stay in motion. Some research has found that kids are more physically active when they play on their own than in organized sports.

They also would be safe at schools, no matter how dicey the neighborhood. Leonore Skenazy, WSJ

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How do we modify daily schedules, in schools for example, to be more conducive to increasing physical activity?”

 

Here’s the big answer, as simple as it is cheap: after-school recess. Keep schools open till 6 every night. Give kids the run of the gym.

 

Follow the lead of former New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg and open up the playgrounds, too. Put out some balls and chalk and even some big cardboard boxes.

 

Have an adult on the premises (with an EpiPen). But otherwise, let kids figure out their own fun. Leonore Skenazy, WSJ

19-Year-Olds As Sedentary As 60-Year-Olds, Study Suggests

John Hopkins Bloomberg School Of Public Health

Teen Years Represent Highest Risk For Inactivity

Physical activity among children and teens is lower than previously thought, and, in another surprise finding, young adults after the age of 20 show the only increases in activity over the lifespan, suggests a study conducted by researchers from the Johns Hopkins Bloomberg School of Public Health. And, the study found, starting at age 35, activity levels declined through midlife and older adulthood.

The study also identified different times throughout the day when activity was highest and lowest, across age groups and between males and females. These patterns, the researchers say, could inform programs aimed at increasing physical activity by targeting not only age groups but times with the least activity, such as during the morning for children and adolescents.

The findings, which were published online June 1 in the journal, Preventive Medicine, come amid heightened concern that exercise deficits are contributing to the growing obesity epidemic, particularly among children and teens.

“Activity levels at the end of adolescence were alarmingly low, and by age 19, they were comparable to 60-year-olds,” says the study’s senior author, Vadim Zipunnikov, assistant professor in the Bloomberg School’s Department of Biostatistics. “For school-age children, the primary window for activity was the afternoon between two and six P.M. So the big question is how do we modify daily schedules, in schools for example, to be more conducive to increasing physical activity?”

For their study, the researchers used data from the National Health and Nutrition Examination Survey from the 2003-2004 and 2005-2006 survey cycles. The 12,529 participants wore tracking devices for seven straight days, removing them for only bathing and at bedtime. The devices measured how much time participants were sedentary or engaged in light or moderate-to-vigorous physical activity.

The researchers broke down findings into five age groups: children (ages six to 11); adolescents (ages 12 to 19); young adults (ages 20 to 29); adults at midlife (ages 31 to 59); and older adults (age 60 through age 84). Forty-nine percent were male, the rest female.

Activity among 20-somethings, the only age group that saw an increase in activity levels, was spread out throughout the day, with an increase in physical activity in the early morning, compared to younger adolescents. The increase may be related to starting full-time work and other life transitions.

For all age groups, males generally had higher activity levels than females, particularly high-intensity activity, but after midlife, these levels dropped off sharply compared to females. Among adults 60 years and older, males were more sedentary and had lower light-intensity activity levels than females.

The study confirmed that recommended guidelines were not being met. For instance, the World Health Organization (WHO) recommends at least 60 minutes of moderate-to-vigorous physical activity a day for children ages five to 17 years. The study found that more than 25 percent of boys and 50 percent of girls ages six to 11 and more than 50 percent of male and 75 percent of female adolescents ages 12 to 19 had not met the WHO recommendation.

While WHO formulates its recommendations in terms of moderate-to-vigorous activity, the researchers say there is a growing consensus for the benefits of reducing sedentary behavior and increasing even low-intensity levels of physical activity.

“The goal of campaigns aimed at increasing physical activity has focused on increasing higher-intensity exercise,” says Zipunnikov. “Our study suggests that these efforts should consider time of day and also focus on increasing lower-intensity physical activity and reducing inactivity.”

“Re-evaluating the effect of age on physical activity over the lifespan” was written by Vijay R. Varma, Debangan Dey, Andrew Leroux, Junrui Di, Jacek Urbanek, Luo Xiao and Vadim Zipunnikov.

The research was supported by the National Institutes of Health (grants 5R01HL123407-02, 5R01AG049872-02, 5R01AG050507-02). Vijay R. Varma was supported by the Intramural Research Program, the National Institute of Aging.

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Turbocharge Your Metabolism!

 The All-Day Fat-Burning Diet, Yuri Elkaim

The All-Day Fat-Burning Diet: The 5-Day Food-Cycling Formula That Resets Your Metabolism To Lose Up to 5 Pounds a Week

Author of the bestselling The All-Day Energy Diet, Yuri Elkaim, nutritionist and renowned fitness expert, posits that no combination of calorie cutting, exercise, or restrictive dieting can help people unless they set their bodies to burn fat all day, all night, 24/7. His solution is the 5-Day Food-Cycling Formula, which resets your metabolism to lose up to 5 pounds per week.
What is the 5-Day Food-Cycling Formula? It is 21 days of prescriptive eating and exercise that lead to weight loss and the beginning of total fitness. The 5-day cycle is Day 1: Low Carb Day / Day 2: 1-Day Feast [Not what you think. SK] / Day 3: 1-Day Fast / Day 4: Regular Calorie Day / Day 5: Low Calorie Day. Repeat 4 times.6
Elkaim asserts that today’s overweight epidemic is due not only to inappropriate eating but to numerous environmental stressors. To remove some stressors, his food lists exclude the following common allergens: caffeine, dairy, wheat, rye, oats (unless gluten-free), refined sugar and agave syrup, most packaged foods, fast foods, soy, and vegetable oils. There are many delicious foods to eat (including beans and fit fats). Small amounts of goat milk products, plus ditto honey and maple syrup are also allowed.

 

What happens to 5-day cycling when you reach your 22nd day? In the final chapter, “How To Stay Lean For Life”, Elkaim draws on your 21 day experience and focuses your attention on being a “body whisperer”. He gives 3 options for modifying food-cycling and includes 10 Fat Loss Commandments.

 7 Late in 2016, Rodale Books published Elkaim’s The All-Day Fat-Burning Cookbook, containing over 125 recipes. (They look delicious.)

 

Siri Says: With the 5-Day Food-Cycling, Elkaim elevates “food as medicine” and “eating on purpose” to a new level. I acknowledge his precise science- and experience- based directives as the new way to weight loss. 5-Day Food-Cycling really is a formula for whole body fitness. Elkaim encourages vegetarian protein sources.

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Physical Activity Wins Against Excess Weight, Type II Diabetes

How to stick to those  good intentions

couple running on beach“I’m going to do more sport in the new year.“ Hardly any resolution is made more frequently than this one after the calorie-filled Christmas holidays – and hardly one that is broken as frequently. A team headed by Prof. Wolfgang Schlicht from the Institute for Sport and Movement Science at the University of Stuttgart are investigating behaviour techniques in the framework of the project “PREVIEW“[1] with which the physical activity behaviour can be changed in the long term.

The objective of the consortium with 15 partners from eleven nations is to identify those contents of nutrition and physical activity that could prevent the illness breaking out at an early stage in people in danger of becoming diabetic. The recommendations not only help potential diabetic patients but all those intending to live a healthier lifestyle in the new year.

If your trousers feel tight after too many portions of roast goose and too many biscuits, it is not only an aesthetic problem: people who are overweight and have body fat around the abdominal area bear a particularly high risk of becoming ill with type 2 diabetes. As well as massive discomfort, the consequences include serious concomitant diseases of the heart, the kidneys, the eyes, venous occlusions in the extremities up to disabilities or premature death. In Germany almost half of the adult population are overweight, including an increasing number of children. 15 to 20 percent are even considered to be clinically overweight or obese.     

Along with a healthy diet, it is physical activity above all that contributes towards reducing the risk of diabetes.

Since intensive training not only sees the pounds drop off but even increases the insulin sensitivity of the muscle cells. These then react to even a low dosage of insulin so that the pancreas is spared and remains functional for a longer period. Yet many people find it hard to vanquish their inner temptation and to change their physical activity behaviour in the long term after an initial burst of motivation. In order to counter obstacles, techniques to change behaviour based on evidence (i.e. based on empirical evidence) were compiled and recorded in a manual.

Making a contract with yourself 

Those who want to stay the course with their good intentions in the long term, according to the advice of the scientists, should first make a contract with themselves that records in writing the intentions and objectives but also the necessary resources and the period.

The next step should test which activity opportunities exist in front of their own front doors and which ones match man doing pushuptheir natures and preferences. “When-then” sentences help to put the good intentions into practice, such as, for example “When I get home on Monday evening, then I’ll go for a walk for half an hour”, preferably also recorded in writing. The same procedure can also be used with predictable barriers such as “If it rains on Monday evening, I’ll do half an hour of keep fit in the living room instead“.

Documenting what you have already achieved is motivating and also serves as feedback for the targets previously set. And last but not least it is recommendable to look for support in the form of a buddy with whom you can do physical and sporting activities together.

The manual in which the above techniques on changing behaviour are also recorded is initially geared to the consultants in the study centres who accompany 2,500 participants at eight locations worldwide over a period of three years and who are trained for this in two workshops. Moreover, the Stuttgart scientists analyse the personal, social, cultural and environmental factors that could favour or obstruct the success of the study. Examples of such factors are faith in yourself, individually dealing with difficult or negative situations or dealing with temptations, such as sweets.

[1] PREVIEW – Prevention of diabetes In Europe and around the World

Activity Schemes For Overweight Youngsters

 

Head of Health and Wellbeing Kiara Lewis addresses national Public Health England workshop on her research into activity schemes for overweight youngsters

AS the UK faces up to a growing obesity crisis among youngsters, a University of Huddersfield expert has told a major conference about a successful project which saw a large number of children not only lose weight but also gain in self-esteem and begin to enjoy exercise, which they had previously grown to hate.

Kiara Lewis (pictured right) is Head of the Division of Health and Wellbeing in the University’s School of Human and Health Sciences.  Her area of special expertise is the promotion of physical activity among overweight and sedentary people and she was invited to address a workshop organised in Durham by Public Health England.  The event dealt with issues arising from the National Child Measurement programme, which gathers data used to support public health initiatives.

 

 

One of six invited speakers, Kiara reported on her research, which includes analysis of interviews with overweight children and her evaluation of a scheme called Young PALS, run by Kirklees Council and now known as the Start scheme.

Children aged from five to 16 who belonged to the highest categories of obesity were invited to join the scheme, which included not only physical activity, but also sessions on nutrition and one-to-one motivational interviews.

“The children on the scheme were very successful in reducing the weight, but they also increased their self esteem and they became more active,” said Kiara.  “I have been researching what it was about the scheme that made them feel better about themselves and why they now enjoy exercising.  Beforehand they often disliked PE, but after they had been on the scheme they discovered they liked exercise and activity.

“In my presentation for Public Health England, I tried to explain what we can do to make these youngsters feel better about themselves and what helps them to like being physically active.”

During the period of evaluation by the University of Huddersfield, the Young PALS project involved more than 300 Kirklees children.  Some 60 per cent of them reduced their BMI.

 

That figure is comparable to the success rate of similar schemes, said Kiara Lewis, but what was more unusual was that 72 per cent of the participants recorded a rise in their self-esteem.

“Many of these children hadn’t had a positive experience of being physically active, so it was something they avoided.  But now they were saying that they were enjoying exercise and they wanted to be generally more active.”

Kiara added that key factors to emerge were that younger children enjoyed co-operative play not competitive team games and older children enjoyed independent activities such as gym, fitness and working towards personal goals rather than activities involving peer comparisons.

Another important element was the attitude of the staff.

“Rather than telling them off or shouting, they made the children comfortable, so the kids felt they had respect and understanding from the instructors.  They felt better about themselves because of the way they were treated.  This meant the experience was enjoyable, whereas at school sometimes they felt humiliated and useless in PE.”

Kiara Lewis is continuing her research in the field and has recently been conducting interviews with PE teachers and their pupils.

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