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Weight Reduction

HEALTH
October 24, 2005 | Shari Roan, Times Staff Writer
Drugstore shelves are brimming with shakes, herbs and other products to facilitate weight loss -- but the vast majority of them have not been shown to work. It's possible that a proven medication that helps modestly with weight loss may join their ranks next year. The pharmaceutical company GlaxoSmithKline has asked the Food and Drug Administration for permission to sell a low-dose version of its diet drug Xenical over the counter.
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HEALTH
September 19, 2005 | Emily Singer, Special to The Times
DIETERS looking for a safer alternative to ephedra-based diet pills might be out of luck. New research shows that two popular supplements promoted as safe and ephedra-free can also raise heart rate and blood pressure in healthy people. "One [formula] increased blood pressure as much as ephedra-containing supplements ... so they may carry similar health risks," says Neal Benowitz, a clinical pharmacologist at UC San Francisco who participated in the study.
HEALTH
August 8, 2005 | Emily Singer, Special to The Times
PEOPLE plagued by middle-age spread may now have a gentle way to halt the scale's uptick. New research shows that regular yoga practice can lessen weight gain in middle age and can help overweight people shed pounds. The weight loss boost may come more from the mental benefits of yoga than the exercise itself. "When you practice yoga, you become more aware of the sensations in your body," says lead researcher Alan R.
HEALTH
July 4, 2005 | From Washington Post
Overweight people who are otherwise healthy might increase their risk of dying by intentionally losing weight. A study of 2,957 twins in Finland found that those who were overweight and who lost weight on purpose were about 86% more likely to die for any reason over the next 18 years compared with those whose weight remained stable.
HEALTH
June 27, 2005 | Sally Squires, Special to The Times
To reach a healthier weight this summer, consider throwing some Portobello mushrooms, veggie burgers and fish on the grill in place of the usual steak, hot dogs and chicken. A new study of about 55,000 healthy, middle-aged Swedish women finds that vegetarians of all types weighed significantly less than their meat-eating counterparts. The findings are some of the first to show a direct link between a plant-based diet and a lower body mass index.
BUSINESS
June 27, 2005 | Lisa Girion, Times Staff Writer
It's not unusual for doctors and insurance companies to clash over coverage. But when it comes to obesity surgery, insurance companies disagree even among themselves. Worried about the safety and costs of stomach stapling and similar weight-loss operations, many insurers have tightened eligibility rules, and a few have stopped covering the procedures altogether. These insurers say the risks of complications and death are too high.
HEALTH
June 13, 2005 | Emily Singer, Special to The Times
Even as a new wave of dairy commercials touts eating yogurt and other dairy products as a way to shed unwanted pounds, new research shows that drinking excess milk can cause weight gain in older children. "We're concerned that adolescents will see the ads and conclude that drinking large amounts of milk will be an easy way to lose weight," says lead researcher Catherine Berkey, a biostatistician at Harvard Medical School and Brigham and Women's Hospital in Boston.
BUSINESS
June 7, 2005 | Lisa Girion, Times Staff Writer
Jeanne Jones, a nurse at Orange Coast Memorial Medical Center, gingerly felt her way down the steps because she couldn't see her feet beneath her broad belly. She waddled to the hospital lobby and pressed her plump frame into a chair. When she got up, she had to squeeze herself out. As she made her way toward the hospital pharmacy, she spied a nurse she had worked with for years. She was about to say hello when the nurse looked away.
HEALTH
May 23, 2005 | Elena Conis
Early research on conjugated linoleic acid (CLA) showed that it destroyed fat cells in mice -- a finding that has made the compound an increasingly popular weight loss supplement. CLA is a modified form of linoleic acid, an omega-6 fatty acid essential for nutrition. It's most abundant in milk, cheese, lamb and beef, but the CLA in most supplements comes from vegetable oils, such as sunflower oil. Most diets provide no more than a gram of CLA per day.
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