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Body Mass Index

HEALTH
August 25, 2012 | By Chris Woolston
Belly fat seems so simple. Eat too many deep-fried mozzarella sticks while thinking about maybe possibly going to the gym someday, and your belly will eventually start growing. Nothing complicated about that. But there's a lot going on beneath our over-stretched shirts. Scientists say that belly fat is strangely complex and widely misunderstood. If you want to do something about the bulge, you should know that slimming down can be complicated too. "How you lose fat may be just as important as how much fat you lose," says Dr. Samuel Klein, professor of medicine and nutritional science at Washington University School of Medicine.
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NEWS
November 21, 2011 | By Jeannine Stein, Los Angeles Times / For the Booster Shots blog
Weight may be a risk factor for a higher risk of death soon after major surgery, but it may not be obesity that's the problem. A study finds that people with a normal body mass index or who are underweight may be more likely to die after an operation. The study, released online Monday in the journal Archives of Surgery , examined data on 189,533 surgeries of people whose likelihood of death was known. Among those patients, 3,245 (1.7%) died in the month following surgery. Researchers divided the patients into five groups based on their body mass index for comparison.
NEWS
July 5, 2010 | By Jessie Schiewe, Los Angeles Times
The body mass index (BMI) isn't a perfect measure for obesity. Convenience and routine are on its side -- so health experts aren't likely to stop using it any time soon -- but its limitations have got some doctors thinking … . In a study published online Monday in the journal Pediatrics, researchers at the University of Michigan's Mott Children's Hospital found measurements of neck circumference to be a reliable technique...
NEWS
September 6, 2011 | By Jeannine Stein, Los Angeles Times / For the Booster Shots blog
Being obese might up the chance of developing Type 2 diabetes, but the true risk factors may lie in how much overweight someone is and how long they've been that way. Much like figuring how numbers of cigarettes smoked and years of smoking relate to lung cancer risk, researchers set out to see how degree and length of obesity factored into the risk of getting Type 2 diabetes. They looked at data on 8,157 teens and young adults who were 14 to 21 years old at the start of a national study.
SCIENCE
May 20, 2013 | By Geoffrey Mohan
Having childhood attention deficit hyperactivity disorder could lead to a life of obesity, even if ADHD symptoms disappear in adulthood, a new study shows. The study, which followed up on 207 middle-class men who had been diagnosed with ADHD as children, found that some 33 years after their diagnosis, their body mass index was significantly higher than those without ADHD. Their propensity to become obese was twice that of adults who were never diagnosed with ADHD, according to the study published Monday in the journal Pediatrics.
NEWS
May 9, 2011 | By Jeannine Stein, Los Angeles Times / For the Booster Shots blog
As little as one hour of low-intensity exercise a week could reduce the risk of colon polyps among people of various racial and ethnic groups, a study finds. The study, presented recently at the Digestive Disease Week meeting in Chicago, analyzed data on 982 patients who underwent colonoscopies. Polyps were found in 29.5% of the study subjects. Patients who hadn't exercised at least one hour a week had a polyp prevalence of 33.2%, while the prevalence rate among those who did exercise one hour or more was 25.3%.
NEWS
January 4, 2012 | By Jeannine Stein, Los Angeles Times / For the Booster Shots blog
Heads up, those of you looking for the American Dietetic Assn. The organization, made up of food and nutrition professionals, has a new name: The Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. The name change officially happened on Jan. 1, and the decision wasn't made lightly. In a news release academy President Sylvia Escott-Stump explained the thoughts behind changing the original name, which has been in place since the group was founded in 1917. "Protecting the public's health is the highest priority of the Academy and our members, and our new name complements our focus: the nutritional well-being of the American public.
SCIENCE
February 6, 2014 | By Karen Kaplan
Warning: Being a firstborn may be hazardous to your health. So suggests a small study of middle-aged men in New Zealand. Compared with  their younger brothers, the firstborns weighed more and were less sensitive to insulin. Researchers had recruited the guys to be part of clinical trials testing whether olive leaf extract or krill oil could improve their metabolic health. All of the volunteers were between the ages of 35 and 55, and all were overweight, with a body mass index between 25 and 30. To study the effects of birth order, they pulled out data from trial participants who were either the first or second child born in their family.
NEWS
November 9, 2011 | By Jeannine Stein, Los Angeles Times / For the Booster Shots blog
The death of rapper Heavy D on Tuesday still has fans in shock as they wonder what felled the 44-year-old star. Though the cause of death may not be known for weeks, L.A. Now reports that an L.A. County coroner's office spokesman said a doctor had prescribed the rapper a drug due to a cough. Heavy D was also having breathing problems at his home before collapsing, and there is speculation that the rapper was experiencing flu-like symptoms or pneumonia. Some studies have shown a link between obesity and a higher risk of pneumonia.
NEWS
January 7, 2013 | By Karin Klein
To combat a growing problem with anorexia and bulimia, a new law in Israel bans fashion models who are considered unhealthily thin and requires the labeling of photos that are digitally altered to make the models look thinner. Unhealthily thin is defined as a body-mass index lower than 18.5. An example being tossed around is that a woman 5 feet 8 inches tall who weighs 120 pounds would be considered, well, not quite kosher for the cameras. That's a long way from zaftig, but certainly an improvement over the bony waifs that have too long been held up as icons of beauty.
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