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Recent Longevity News for the seven days ending 4/21/10.  You should consult your doctor if you are taking any medications.

Alfuzosin Improves Ejaculatory Dysfunction in Men With Probable BPH - Medscape, 4/20/10 - "Alfuzosin (Uroxatral, Sanofi Aventis), a uroselective alpha-1-adrenergic receptor blocker, ameliorates ejaculatory dysfunction in sexually active men with lower urinary tract symptoms (LUTS) suggestive of benign prostatic hypertrophy (BPH) ... Alfuzosin significantly improved IPSS score (7.9 [–41%]; P < .0001) and nocturia (–0.9 [–18%]; P < .001) from baseline. Bother due to LUTS also significantly improved (–1.5 [–28%]; P < .0001)"

Vitamin K may protect against developing non-Hodgkin's lymphoma, say Mayo Clinic researchers - Science Daily, 4/19/10 - "the risk of developing Non-Hodgkin lymphoma was approximately 45 percent lower for participants who had vitamin K intakes in the top quartile of intake in the study (>108 ug/day), compared to participants who had intakes in the bottom quartile (<39 ug/day). This association remained after accounting for other factors such as age, sex, education, obesity, smoking, alcohol use and intake of foods with high amounts of antioxidants"

Vitamin and calcium supplements may reduce breast cancer risk - Science Daily, 4/18/10 - "It is not an immediate effect. You don't take a vitamin today and your breast cancer risk is reduced tomorrow ... Vitamin supplements appeared to reduce the risk of breast cancer by about 30 percent"

First evidence that chitosan could repair spinal damage - Science Daily, 4/16/10 - "Cho was amazed to see that the spinal cord was completely dark. None of the dye had entered the nerve cells. Chitosan had repaired the damaged cell membranes ... Next Cho tested whether a dose of chitosan could prevent large molecules from leaking from damaged spinal cord cells. Testing for the presence of the colossal enzyme lactate dehydrogenase (LDH), Borgens admits he was amazed to see that levels of LDH leakage from chitosan treated spinal cord were lower than from undamaged spinal cords. Not only had the sugar repaired membranes at the compression site but also at other sites where the cell membranes were broken due to handling. And when the duo tested for the presence of harmful reactive oxygen species (ROS), released when ATP generating mitochondria are damaged, they found that ROS levels also fell after applying chitosan to the damaged tissue: chitosan probably repairs mitochondrial membranes as well as the nerve cell membranes"

Statins May Lower Testosterone, Libido - WebMD, 4/16/10 - "When they compared men on statins to those not, the men on statins were twice as likely to have low testosterone, regardless of which of three commonly used thresholds for low testosterone they looked at"

Low Vitamin D Level Tied to Cognitive Decline - WebMD, 4/16/10 - "Two new studies add to evidence that older people with low levels of vitamin D may be more likely to suffer from cognitive impairment. ... Results showed that the lower their score on the test, the lower their vitamin D levels" - See vitamin D at Amazon.com.

Diet high in B vitamins lowers heart risks in Japanese study - Science Daily, 4/15/10 - "The findings on the value of B vitamins were consistent with studies in Europe and North America, although the dietary consumption of vitamin B-6 is generally lower in Japan than in the United States ... Comparing those with the diets lowest and highest for each nutrient, they found that higher consumption of folate and vitamin B-6 was associated with significantly fewer deaths from heart failure in men, and significantly fewer deaths from stroke, heart disease and total cardiovascular diseases in women"

Low vitamin D levels associated with more asthma symptoms and medication use - Science Daily, 4/15/10 - "Low levels of vitamin D are associated with lower lung function and greater medication use in children with asthma ... vitamin D enhances the activity of corticosteroids, the most effective controller medication for asthma ... Patients low in vitamin D generally had higher levels of IgE, a marker of allergy, and responded positively to more allergens in a skin prick test" - See vitamin D at Amazon.com.

Calorie restriction leads scientists to molecular pathways that slow aging, improve health - Science Daily, 4/15/10 - "About 30 percent of the animals on calorie restriction die at an advanced age without any diseases normally related to aging," Fontana says. "In contrast, among animals on a standard diet, the great majority (94 percent) develop and die of one or more chronic diseases such as cancer or heart disease. In 30 percent to 50 percent of the animals on calorie restriction, or with genetic mutations in these aging-related pathways, healthspan is equal to lifespan. They eventually die, but they don't get sick." - Note:  See my calorie restriction page.  It's debatable whether it works in humans.  For example, here's another study:

  • Overweight Older People Live Longer - WebMD, 1/28/10 - "people who met the criteria for being overweight were 17% less likely to die compared to people of normal weight ... In the newly reported research, overweight study participants in their 70s followed for up to 10 years had a 13% lower risk of death than participants classified as normal weight ... Obese and normal-weight study participants had a similar risk of death over the 10 years of follow-up. Underweight study participants had the highest risk of death, even after the researchers adjusted for the wasting effects of disease"

Lack of omega-6 fatty acid linked to severe dermatitis - Science Daily, 4/14/10 - "Without arachidonic acid, the mice developed severe ulcerative dermatitis. The animals were very itchy, they scratched themselves continuously, and they developed a lot of bleeding sores" - Note:  I doubt if that's a problem in America where they get way to much omega-6 already.

Abstracts from this week's Doctor's Guide Nutrition/Dietetics plus abstracts from my RSS feeds (Click here for the journals, the PubMed ones at the top):

Circulating Adiponectin Is Associated with Obesity and Serum Lipids in West Africans - J Clin Endocrinol Metab. 2010 Apr 9 - "Significant negative associations were observed between log-adiponectin levels and measures of obesity after adjusting for age and gender. Similarly, log-adiponectin levels were significantly negatively associated with serum triglycerides and insulin resistance but positively associated with high-density lipoprotein-cholesterol and total cholesterol after adjusting for age, gender, and body mass index"

Health Focus (Abdominal Fat/Pot Bellies):

Related Topics:

Alternative News:

  • Body Types, Body Typing, and Herbal Medicine - HolisticHealthTopics.com - "For those persons who are overstressed or who suffer from excessive adrenal activity and elevated cortisol levels the use of adrenal inhibitors such as alpha linolenic acid ( flaxseed oil ) or phosphatidylserine may be beneficial ... "
  • Drinking Tea May Trim Men's Waistlines - WebMD, 1/29/10 - "In men, the use of sugar in tea was associated with a nearly 1-inch smaller waist measurement, but the use of artificial sweeteners was linked to a nearly 2-inch larger waistline ... Among women, the use of milk in tea was associated with a two-thirds-of-an-inch smaller waistline. But women who used artificial sweeteners had an average of nearly an inch larger waistline" - See green tea extract at Amazon.com.
  • Pomegranate oil-seaweed mix may improve liver health and waist size - Nutra USA, 1/25/10 - "Results showed that body weight was significantly reduced by an average of 5.5 kg in people in the NAFLD group and 4.9 kg in the normal liver function group. Women in the placebo group lost an average of 1.4 kilos. In addition, women with NAFLD experienced improvements in waist circumference, body and liver fat content, liver enzymes, and serum triglycerides" - [Abstract] - 5.5 kg is 12.1 pounds - See FucoThin at Amazon.com
  • The effects of Xanthigen in the weight management of obese premenopausal women with non-alcoholic fatty liver disease and normal liver fat - Diabetes Obes Metab. 2010 Jan;12(1):72-81 - "Xanthigen-600/2.4 mg (300 mg PSO + 300 mg brown seaweed extract containing 2.4 mg fucoxanthin) resulted in statistically significant reduction of body weight (5.5 +/- 1.4 kg NAFLD group and 4.9 +/- 1.2 kg NLF group, p < 0.05), waist circumference (NAFLD group only), body (3.5 +/- 1.9 kg NAFLD group, p < 0.001; 3.6 +/- 0.7 kg NLF group, p < 0.05) and liver fat content, liver enzymes (NAFLD group only), serum triglycerides and C-reactive protein. Weight loss and reduction in body and liver fat content occurred earlier in patients with NLF than in patients with NAFLD. Fucoxanthin (> 2.4 mg) and Xanthigen-400/1.6 mg (200 mg PSO + 200 mg brown seaweed extract containing 1.6 mg fucoxanthin) significantly increased REE in NAFLD subjects compared to placebo. CONCLUSIONS: Xanthigen promoted weight loss, reduced body and liver fat content, and improved liver function tests in obese non-diabetic women. Xanthigen and Fucoxanthin also increased REE. This product may be considered a promising food supplement in the management of obesity" - See FucoThin at Amazon.com
  • Dietary Fiber May Help Prevent Body Weight, Waist Circumference Gain - Medscape, 1/6/10 - "There was an inverse association of total fiber intake with subsequent change in weight and in waist circumference. For each 10-g/day increase in total fiber intake, the pooled estimate was –39 g/year (95% confidence interval [CI], –71 to –7 g/year) for weight change and –0.08 cm/year (95% CI, –0.11 to –0.05 cm/year) for waist circumference change ... For each 10-g/day increase in fiber intake from cereals, there was a weight change of –77 g/year (95% CI, –127 to –26 g/year) and change in waist circumference of –0.10 cm/year (95% CI, –0.18 to –0.02 cm/year). Fruit and vegetable fiber was not associated with weight change. However, the association of fruit and vegetable fiber intake with change in waist circumference was similar to that seen for intake of total dietary fiber and cereal fiber"
  • Whole-Grain Intake and Cereal Fiber Are Associated with Lower Abdominal Adiposity in Older Adults - J Nutr. 2009 Sep 2 - "After adjustment for covariates, whole-grain intake was inversely associated with BMI [26.8 kg/m(2) (25.7-28.1) vs. 25.8 kg/m(2) (24.6-27.1), (95% CI); P-trend = 0.08], percent body fat [34.5% (32.7-36.3) vs. 32.1% (30.1-34.1); P-trend = 0.02], and percent trunk fat mass [43.0% (40.4-45.5) vs. 39.4% (36.7-42.1); P-trend = 0.02] in the lowest compared with the highest quartile category of whole-grain intake. Refined grain intake was not associated with any measure of body fat distribution. Cereal fiber was inversely associated with BMI [27.3 kg/m(2) (26.1-28.6) vs. 25.4 kg/m(2) (24.3-26.7); P-trend = 0.012], percent body fat [34.7% (32.8-36.6) vs. 31.5% (29.4-33.5); P-trend = 0.004], and percent trunk fat mass [42.8% (40.2-45.4) vs. 37.8% (35.0-40.6) ... Higher intakes of cereal fiber, particularly from whole-grain sources, are associated with lower total percent body fat and percent trunk fat mass in older adults"
  • Successful Weight Loss With Dieting Is Linked To Vitamin D Levels - Science Daily, 6/11/09 - "the authors found that baseline, or pre-diet, vitamin D levels predicted weight loss in a linear relationship. For every increase of 1 ng/mL in level of 25-hydroxycholecalciferol—the precursor form of vitamin D and a commonly used indicator of vitamin D status—subjects ended up losing almost a half pound (0.196 kg) more on their calorie-restricted diet. For each 1-ng/mL increase in the active or "hormonal" form of vitamin D (1,25-dihydroxycholecalciferol), subjects lost nearly one-quarter pound (0.107 kg) more ... Additionally, higher baseline vitamin D levels (both the precursor and active forms) predicted greater loss of abdominal fat" - See vitamin D at Amazon.com.
  • Conjugated Linoleic Acids Reduce Body Fat in Healthy Postmenopausal Women - J Nutr. 2009 Jun 3 - "Isomers of conjugated linoleic acids (CLA) reduce fat mass (FM) and increase insulin sensitivity in some, but not all, murine studies. In humans, this effect is still debatable. In this study, we compared the effect of 2 CLA supplements on total and regional FM assessed by dual energy X-ray absorptiometry, changes in serum insulin and glucose concentrations, and adipose tissue (AT) gene expression in humans. In a double-blind, parallel, 16-wk intervention, we randomized 81 healthy postmenopausal women to 1) 5.5 g/d of 40/40% of cis9,trans11-CLA (c9,t11-CLA) and trans10,cis12-CLA (t10,c12-CLA) (CLA-mix); 2) cis9, trans11-CLA (c9,t11-CLA); or 3) control (olive oil) ... The CLA-mix group had less total FM (4%) and lower-body FM (7%) than the control (P = 0.02 and < 0.001, respectively). Post hoc analyses showed that serum insulin concentrations were greater in the CLA-mix group (34%) than the control group (P = 0.02) in the highest waist circumference tertile only ... In conclusion, a 50:50 mixture of c9,t11- and t10,c12-CLA isomers resulted in less total and lower-body FM in postmenopausal women and greater serum insulin concentrations in the highest waist circumference tertile" - See conjugated linoleic acid at Amazon.com.  As with all CLA studies, I wish they would state brand names instead of leaving it to the reader to figure out which mixture corresponds to which brand name.  I've seen studies where some isomers increase insulin sensitivity while others have the opposite effect.
  • Dietary Supplementation of L-Arginine and Conjugated Linoleic Acid Reduces Retroperitoneal Fat Mass and Increases Lean Body Mass in Rats - J Nutr. 2009 May 13 - "We conclude that CLA and arginine modulated adipose tissue metabolism by separate, but not additive, effects. Also, CLA and arginine may have depressed muscle protein turnover" - See conjugated linoleic acid at Amazon.com and L-arginine products at Amazon.com.
  • Whole-Grain, Low-Calorie Diet Reduced Body Fat Compared With Refined-Wheat Low-Calorie Diet - Doctor's Guide, 5/14/09 - "Patients consuming whole-grain foods had a significantly larger drop in body fat percentage (assessed by dual-energy x-ray absorptiometry scanning) compared with patients who had eaten refined foods (-6.8% vs -4.8%; P = .03) ... Total cholesterol and LDL cholesterol levels rose by 5% in the refined-wheat group but remained unchanged in the wholemeal-wheat group"
  • Study In Pregnant Women Suggests Probiotics May Help Ward Off Obesity - Science Daily, 5/7/09 - "One year after giving birth, women were less likely to have the most dangerous kind of obesity if they had been given probiotics from the first trimester of pregnancy, found new research that suggests manipulating the balance of bacteria in the gut may help fight obesity ... Central obesity, where overall obesity is combined with a particularly fat belly, is considered especially unhealthy ... We found it in 25% of the women who had received the probiotics along with dietary counselling, compared with 43% in the women who received diet advice alone" - See probiotics at Amazon.com.
  • Marine n-3 fatty acids promote size reduction of visceral adipose depots, without altering body weight and composition, in male Wistar rats fed a high-fat diet - Br J Nutr. 2009 Apr 28:1-12 - "Wistar rats fed a high-fat diet. Rats were fed diets including lard (19.5 % lard) or n-3 FA (9.1 % lard and 10.4 % Triomar) for 7 weeks. Feed consumption and weight gain were similar, whereas plasma lipid concentrations were lower in the n-3 FA group. Magnetic resonance imaging revealed smaller visceral (mesenteric, perirenal and epididymal) adipose depots in the n-3 FA-fed animals (35, 44 and 32 % reductions, respectively). n-3 FA feeding increased mRNA expression of cytokines as well as chemokines in several adipose depots. Expression of Adipoq and Pparg was enhanced in the mesenteric adipose depots of the n-3 FA-fed rats, and fasting plasma insulin levels were lowered. Expression of the lipogenic enzymes Acaca and Fasn was increased in the visceral adipose depots, whereas Dgat1 was reduced in the perirenal and epididymal depots. Cpt2 mRNA expression was almost doubled in the mesenteric depot and liver. Carcass analyses showed similar body fat (%) in the two feeding groups, indicating that n-3 FA feeding led to redistribution of fat away from the visceral compartment" - See Mega Twin EPA at Amazon.com and Jarrow Max DHA at Amazon.com.
  • Carotenoids may halve metabolic syndrome risk - Nutra USA, 4/23/09 - "Higher total carotenoid, beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, and lycopene intakes were associated with lower waist circumferences and visceral and subcutaneous fat mass ... Higher lycopene intake was related to lower serum triglyceride concentrations ... higher total carotenoid intakes, mainly those of beta-carotene and lycopene, were associated with a lower prevalence of metabolic syndrome and with lower measures of adiposity and serum triglyceride concentrations in middle-aged and elderly men" - [Abstract] - See Jarrow Formulas, CarotenALL, Mixed Carotenoid Complex at Amazon.com.
  • Dietary carotenoid intake is associated with lower prevalence of metabolic syndrome in middle-aged and elderly men - J Nutr. 2009 May;139(5):987-92 - "After adjustment for confounders, total carotenoid and lycopene intakes were inversely associated with presence of metabolic syndrome [relative risk (RR) quartile 4 vs. quartile 1 (95% CI) 0.42 (0.20-0.87), P-trend 0.02; and 0.55 (0.28-1.11), P-trend 0.01, respectively]. For beta-carotene, a decreased risk was observed for each quartile of intake compared with the first [RR quartile 4 vs. quartile 1 (95% CI) 0.58 (0.33-1.02)]. Higher total carotenoid, beta-carotene, alpha-carotene, and lycopene intakes were associated with lower waist circumferences and visceral and subcutaneous fat mass. Higher lycopene intake was related to lower serum triglyceride concentrations" - See Jarrow Formulas, CarotenALL, Mixed Carotenoid Complex at Amazon.com.
  • Blueberries May Banish Belly Fat - WebMD, 4/19/08 - "enriched with whole blueberry powder or carbohydrates as 2% of their total diet ... After 90 days, the rats fed blueberries had less abdominal fat, lower cholesterol, and improved glucose control and insulin sensitivity. The latter two factors are markers of how well the body processes sugar for energy and are related to diabetes risk"
  • Low Glycemic Breakfast May Increase Benefits Of Working Out - Science Daily, 4/15/09 - "Overall, fat oxidation was higher in the LGI treatment than in the HGI treatment (P < 0.05) during the post-breakfast and exercise periods. Following lunch, fullness scores were higher in the LGI trial than in the HGI trial (P < 0.05). The authors concluded that consuming a LGI breakfast increases fat oxidation during subsequent exercise and improved satiety during recovery in sedentary females. As such, individuals trying to shed fat may consider choosing LGI foods eaten prior to when they exercise"
  • Late Bedtimes Linked to Heart Disease - WebMD, 3/30/09 - "The fewer hours a man slept each night, the higher his BMI, blood pressure, and triglyceride levels"
  • Not Enough Vitamin D In The Diet Could Mean Too Much Fat On Adolescents - Science Daily, 3/16/09 - "A Medical College of Georgia study of more than 650 teens age 14-19 has found that those who reported higher vitamin D intakes had lower overall body fat and lower amounts of the fat in the abdomen, a type of fat known as visceral fat, which has been associated with health risks such as heart disease, stroke, diabetes and hypertension" - See vitamin D at Amazon.com.
  • Arginine Discovery Could Help Fight Human Obesity - Science Daily, 2/4/09 - "arginine, an amino acid, reduces fat mass in diet-induced obese rats and could help fight human obesity ... dietary arginine supplementation shifts nutrient partitioning to promote skeletal-muscle gain ... arginine supplementation for a 12-week period decreased the body fat gains of low-fat and high-fat fed rats by 65 percent and 63 percent, respectively. The long-term arginine treatment did not have any adverse effects on either group" - See arginine at Amazon.com.
  • Green tea catechins linked to weight loss: Study - Nutra USA, 1/26/09 - "The subjects were randomly assigned to receive either 500ml per day of a beverage providing 625mg catechins, or a control beverage ... 12-week study period ... people in the catechin group were found to have lost more body weight compared to the control group ... both total abdominal fat area (P = 0.013) and abdominal subcutaneous fat area (P = 0.019) had decreased more in the catechin group" - [Abstract] - See green tea extract at Amazon.com.
  • Green tea catechin consumption enhances exercise-induced abdominal fat loss in overweight and obese adults - J Nutr. 2009 Feb;139(2):264-70 - "for 12 wk ... There was a trend (P = 0.079) toward greater loss of body weight in the catechin group compared with the control group ... Percentage changes in fat mass did not differ between the catechin [5.2 (-7.0, -3.4)] and control groups [-3.5 (-5.4, 1.6)] (P = 0.208). However, percentage changes in total abdominal fat area [-7.7 (-11.7, -3.8) vs. -0.3 (-4.4, 3.9); P = 0.013], subcutaneous abdominal fat area [-6.2 (-10.2, -2.2) vs. 0.8 (-3.3, 4.9); P = 0.019], and fasting serum triglycerides (TG) [-11.2 (-18.8, -3.6) vs. 1.9 (-5.9, 9.7); P = 0.023] were greater in the catechin group. These findings suggest that green tea catechin consumption enhances exercise-induced changes in abdominal fat and serum TG" - See green tea extract at Amazon.com.
  • Dietary L-Arginine Supplementation Reduces White Fat Gain and Enhances Skeletal Muscle and Brown Fat Masses in Diet-Induced Obese Rats - J Nutr. 2008 Dec 23 - "l-arginine-HCl ... Despite similar energy intake, absolute weights of white fat pads increased by 98% in control rats over a 12-wk period but only by 35% in arginine-supplemented rats. The arginine treatment reduced the relative weights of white fat pads by 30% and enhanced those of soleus muscle by 13%, extensor digitorum longus muscle by 11%, and brown fat by 34% compared with control rats ... arginine treatment resulted in lower serum concentrations of leptin, glucose, triglycerides, urea, glutamine, and branched-chain amino acids, higher serum concentrations of nitric-oxide metabolites, and improvement in glucose tolerance. Thus, dietary arginine supplementation shifts nutrient partitioning to promote muscle over fat gain and may provide a useful treatment for improving the metabolic profile and reducing body white fat in diet-induced obese rats" - See arginine products at Amazon.com.
  • Green Tea Catechin Consumption Enhances Exercise-Induced Abdominal Fat Loss in Overweight and Obese Adults - J Nutr. 2008 Dec 11 - "percentage changes in total abdominal fat area [-7.7 (-11.7, -3.8) vs. -0.3 (-4.4, 3.9); P = 0.013], subcutaneous abdominal fat area [-6.2 (-10.2, -2.2) vs. 0.8 (-3.3, 4.9); P = 0.019], and fasting serum triglycerides (TG) [-11.2 (-18.8, -3.6) vs. 1.9 (-5.9, 9.7); P = 0.023] were greater in the catechin group. These findings suggest that green tea catechin consumption enhances exercise-induced changes in abdominal fat and serum TG" - See green tea extract at Amazon.com.
  • Symptoms Of Depression Associated With Increase In Abdominal Fat - Science Daily, 12/1/08 - "There are several mechanisms by which depression might increase abdominal fat, they note. Chronic stress and depression may activate certain brain areas and lead to increased levels of the hormone cortisol, which promotes the accumulation of visceral fat. Individuals with depression may have unhealthier lifestyles, including a poor diet, that could interact with other physiological factors to produce an increase in abdominal obesity" - See my cortisol page for ways to reduce it.  Cortisol is like the chicken and the egg with depression.  They don't seem to know whether it is the cause or result.
  • Whole Grains Shrink Belly Fat? - Dr. Weil, 3/31/08 - "the whole grains may have helped by stabilizing the dieters' blood sugar, which in turn may have had a beneficial effect on CRP levels"
  • n-3 Polyunsaturated fatty acids and trans fatty acids in patients with the metabolic syndrome: a case-control study in Korea - Br J Nutr. 2008 Feb 28;:1-6 - "trans fatty acids of erythrocytes (RBC) ... There were significant positive relationships between trans fatty acids and waist circumference, and between trans fatty acids and BMI. The results suggested that RBC trans fatty acids might be a predictor of increased risk for the metabolic syndrome, but n-3 fatty acids were not in this population"
  • Whole Grains Fight Belly Fat - WebMD, 2/25/08 - "Both groups experienced a decrease in body fat, but the whole-grain group lost significantly more body fat from the abdominal region than the refined-grain group. Excessive fat around the midsection is linked to an increased risk of heart disease ... The whole-grain group experienced other benefits. For example, CRP levels dropped by 38% among those who followed a whole-grain diet"
  • Soy linked to less belly fat in postmenopausal women - Nutra USA, 1/14/08 - "At the end of the trial there were no differences in the weight of women in both groups ... However, measures of subcutaneous abdominal fat were significantly different between the groups, with women in the soy group experiencing a 14.7 sq. cm reduction compared to a 22.9 sq. cm increase in the placebo group" - [Abstract]
  • Effect of a daily supplement of soy protein on body composition and insulin secretion in postmenopausal women - Fertil Steril. 2007 Dec;88(6):1609-17 - "A daily supplement of soy protein prevents the increase in subcutaneous and total abdominal fat observed with an isocaloric casein placebo in postmenopausal women"
  • Vitamin C and dairy linked to less abdominal weight - Nutra USA, 11/16/07 - "low vitamin C intake was associated with a 131 per cent increase in probability of central fat accumulation, while low calcium increased the probability by 30 per cent" - [Abstract] - See vitamin C products at Amazon.com.
  • Dietary and non-dietary determinants of central adiposity among Tehrani women - Public Health Nutr. 2007 Sep 3;:1-7 - "Marriage (1.31; 1.10-1.82), menopause (1.22; 1.02-1.61), low vitamin C intake (2.31; 1.25-4.25) and low calcium intake (1.30; 1.07-3.78) were associated with central fat accumulation" - See vitamin C products at Amazon.com.
  • Six months supplementation with conjugated linoleic acid induces regional-specific fat mass decreases in overweight and obese - Br J Nutr. 2007 Mar;97(3):550-60 - "randomised into two groups supplemented with either 3 x 4 g/d CLA or placebo for 6 months. CLA significantly decreased BFM at month 3 (Delta=- 0 x 9 %, P=0 x 016) and at month 6 (Delta=- 3 x 4 %, P=0 x 043) compared with placebo. The reduction in fat mass was located mostly in the legs (Delta=- 0 x 8 kg, P<0 x 001), and in women (Delta=-1 x 3 kg, P=0 x 046) with BMI >30 kg/m2 (Delta=-1 x 9 kg, P=0 x 011), compared with placebo. The waist-hip ratio decreased significantly (P=0 x 043) compared with placebo. LBM increased (Delta=+0 x 5 kg, P=0 x 049) within the CLA group ... Adverse events did not differ between the groups" - See conjugated linoleic acid at Amazon.com.
  • Low glycemic diet may help stay slim - MSNBC, 10/27/06 - "normal-weight women who ate a diet with a relatively high glycemic index gained more weight, more fat, and more padding around the middle over a six-year period than women who ate a low glycemic index diet"
  • Supplementation With Chromium Picolinate Improves Glycemic Control, Attenuates Weight Gain - Doctor's Guide, 8/9/06 - "Blood sugar levels of study participants taking chromium picolinate in combination with the antidiabetic medication dropped significantly compared to the group taking the medication plus placebo ... Study participants taking chromium picolinate also experienced significantly lower abdominal body fat accumulation than the group taking medication and placebo, and experienced less overall weight gain" - See iHerb or Vitacosticon chromium products.
  • Exercise Important in Reducing Size of Abdominal Fat Cells - Doctor's Guide, 8/8/06 - "The diet-alone group had no changes in abdominal fat cell size. However, both exercise groups had decreases of about 18% in the size of their abdominal fat cells"
  • Association of abdominal obesity with decreased serum levels of carotenoids in a healthy Japanese population - Clin Nutr. 2006 May 12 - "abdominal fat accumulation is associated with oxidative stress as determined by low levels of serum carotenoids in females"
  • Low-Glycemic Load Diet Facilitates Weight Loss in Overweight Adults with High Insulin Secretion - Doctor's Guide, 12/7/05 - "The regulation of body weight is, at least in part, influenced by how much insulin a person secretes in response to a load of glucose, as well as by how sensitive that person is to insulin's glucose-lowering effects"
  • Exercise Fights 'Hidden' Body Fat - WebMD, 9/14/05 - "Higher amounts of exercise cut deep belly fat and fat around the waist ... Deep belly fat (technically called "visceral fat" or fat surrounding organs within the abdomen) has been linked to health problems including heart disease, type 2 diabetes, and metabolic syndrome -- a cluster of risk factors that greatly increase the chance of developing these diseases"
  • Running May Melt Away Belly Fat - CBS 2 Chicago, 9/14/05
  • Vinegar may help dieters eat less - Nutra USA, 9/7/05 - "Both glucose and insulin responses were about 25 per cent lower at 90 minutes when the volunteers had consumed the highest level of vinegar compared to the reference meal ... This level of vinegar is equivalent to about two to three tablespoons" - See Vinegar products at iHerb (1 - 500 mg tablet equals 2 tsb of vinegar.  4.5 tablets equals about 3 tablespoons by my calculations.  Related articles:
  • New Trial Shows Chromium Picolinate Reduces Weight Gain Associated with Diabetes Medication - Doctor's Guide, 6/16/05 - "The study participants who took 1,000 mcg of Chromax(R) chromium picolinate in combination with the antidiabetic medication experienced significantly lower body fat accumulation (0.12%) than the group taking medication and placebo (1.1%), particularly in the abdomen area" - See iHerb or Vitacosticon chromium products.
  • Skipping Exercise Makes Fat a Bigger Problem - WebMD, 4/19/05 - "Just five hours after exercise stopped, the rat's abdominal fat cells started to send off chemical signals that made them start to swell. After two days of no exercise, the fat cells got 19% larger -- and the rats' stomach fat got 48% heavier"
  • Effects of metformin on the body composition in subjects with risk factors for type 2 diabetes - Diabetes Obes Metab. 2005 Mar;7(2):189-92 - "In the metformin group, there was a decrease in fat weight from 25.9 +/- 9.4 to 20.8 +/- 9.2 kg, p < 0.01, an increase in lean weight from 57.05 +/- 13.6 to 61.9 +/- 16.5 kg, p < 0.01, an increase in basal metabolism from 1735 +/- 413 to 1878 +/- 505 calories/day, p < 0.05 and an increase in body water" - See metformin at IAS.  Note:  That's a 19.7% decrease in fat (25.9-20.8)/25.9 = 19.7%, a 8.5% increase in lean weight (61.9-57.05)/57.05 = 8.5% and a 8.2% increase in basal metabolism (1878-1735)/1735 = 8.2%. - Ben
  • Abdominal Fat Decreases, Insulin Action Improves When Elderly Take Hormone - Science Daily, 11/17/04
  • Effect of DHEA on Abdominal Fat and Insulin Action in Elderly Women and Men: A Randomized Controlled Trial - JAMA. 2004 Nov 10;292(18):2243-8 - "DHEA replacement could play a role in prevention and treatment of the metabolic syndrome associated with abdominal obesity" - See DHEA products at iHerb.
  • Hormone Protects Against Diseases of Aging - WebMD, 11/9/04 - "The elderly people in the study took 50 mg a day of DHEA ... Six months later, the DHEA group showed significant reductions in abdominal obesity (10% fat reduction around organs in the abdominal cavity among women and 7.4% among men) and improvements in insulin action or a decrease in insulin resistance"
  • Increase in DHEA May Help Decrease Abdominal Fat in Elderly Persons - Doctor's Guide, 11/9/04 - "DHEA replacement therapy induced significant decreases in both visceral fat (within the abdomen) and subcutaneous abdominal fat (below the skin surface) in elderly men and women. "The decrease in visceral fat relative to initial values averaged 10.2 percent in the women and 7.4 percent in the men. The DHEA therapy also resulted in a significant decrease in abdominal subcutaneous fat, averaging approximately 6 percent in both the men and women"
  • DHEA May Reduce Abdominal Fat and Increase Insulin Sensitivity in the Elderly - Medscape, 11/9/04
  • Research: Refined Grains Expand Girths - Intelihealth, 6/21/04 - "three years they were tracked ... At the end, the white bread group had three times the fiber group's gain at the gut ... I think abdominal fat cells may be more sensitive to insulin's effects than other fat cells in the body"
  • CLA: The New Miracle Weight Loss Pill? - WebMD, 5/24/04 - "Both CLA groups lost weight -- about 4 pounds; the placebo group stayed the same ... The CLA syrup group had a 9% body fat loss; the CLA pill group had 7% loss; the placebo group had no body fat loss ... The increased lipoprotein levels may be a byproduct of fat loss, says Gaullier. "The body does show inflammation caused by the process of eliminating fat. We think this is what is happening, but we don't know for certain."" - See iHerb or Vitacosticon CLA products.
  • A Derivative Of The Green Tea Leaf May Help With Metabolic Syndrome X, A Potentially Deadly Disorder - Intelihealth, 4/10/03 - "A new weapon might eventually be added to the arsenal: consumption of Tegreen, a tea polyphenols product containing in excess of 65 percent tea catechins, derived from the green tea leaf ... oral administration of Tegreen is capable of improving glucose and lipid metabolisms in an obese rat model induced by a high-calorie diet ... Tegreen intervention can significantly decrease visceral fat depot and increase the insulin's sensitivity, presumably touching one of the pathological root causes of this potentially deadly syndrome" - See iHerb or Vitacosticon green tea extracts.  My favorite is Jarrow green tea at iHerb.
  • Stress, Cortisol and Health - Supplement Watch Newsletter, 10/02 - "several lines of evidence have converged to solidify the concept that stress makes us fat (because of cortisol), thins our bones (because of cortisol), shrinks our brains (because of cortisol), suppresses our immune system (because of cortisol), saps our energy levels (because of cortisol), and kills our sex drive (because of cortisol) ... Take a daily multivitamin/multi-mineral supplement - because calcium, magnesium, vitamin C and B-complex vitamins are needed for a proper stress response ... Chief among the supplements with documented cortisol-controlling effects are Phosphatidylserine, Beta-sitosterol, Magnolia bark, Theanine, Epimedium, Ashwagandha and Passionflower"
  • Novel Method of Enhancing Anti-Fat Effects of CLA - Life Extension Magazine, 8/02 - "CLA improves insulin sensitivity" - See iHerb or Vitacosticon CLA products.
  • Hypercortisolemia Cited in Link Between Depression and Cardiovascular Disorders - Doctor's Guide, 4/9/02 - "Depressed patients who are also hypercortisolemic appear to have resistance to insulin and increased visceral fat, possibly accounting for a link between major depression and cardiovascular disorders"
  • Single enzyme to blame for potbellies: study - MSNBC, 12/6/01 - "What they found was that a single enzyme in fat cells that raises levels of cortisol — the “fight or flight” stress hormone — triggers fat accumulation around the belly and its associated ill effects ... The researchers were drawn to the role of cortisol because patients with a rare illness known as Cushing syndrome — who have too much of the steroid hormone in their blood — develop severe obesity concentrated around their middles and become diabetic ... Since overweight people without Cushing syndrome typically don’t have too much cortisol in their bloodstreams, Flier hypothesized that they may be producing high cortisol levels solely in their fat cells — possibly because the enzyme HSD-1, which makes cortisol from an inactive molecule, is overactive ... The level of cortisol in their stomach fat tissue was 15 percent to 30 percent higher than in their non-engineered counterparts" - The link went dead on this but I found a copy at http://www.cushingsonline.com/newsletters/email/12-4-2002.htm (scroll about 2/3rds the way down).

Other News:

  • Fat redistribution preferentially reflects the anti-inflammatory benefits of pioglitazone treatment - Metabolism. 2010 Jan 19 - "high-sensitivity C-reactive protein (hsCRP) ... Pioglitazone treatment for 12 weeks decreased serum hsCRP levels (0.83 [1.14] to 0.52 [0.82] mg/L, P < .001) and improved glycemic control (fasting glucose, P < .001; glycosylated hemoglobin, P < .001) and lipid profiles (triglyceride, P = .016; high-density lipoprotein cholesterol, P < .001). Between responders and nonresponders to the hsCRP-lowering effect of pioglitazone, there were significant differences in baseline hsCRP levels and changes in the postprandial glucose and the ratio of visceral fat thickness (VFT) to subcutaneous fat thickness (SFT) (P = .004, .011, and .001, respectively). The percentage change in hsCRP levels after treatment was inversely correlated with baseline hsCRP levels (r = -0.497, P < .001) and directly correlated with the change in postprandial glucose (r = 0.251, P = .021), VFT (r = 0.246, P = .030), and VFT/SFT ratio (r = 0.276, P = .015). Logistic regression analysis revealed that the hsCRP-lowering effect of pioglitazone was affected by baseline hsCRP levels (odds ratio [OR] = 7.929, P = .007) as well as changes in postprandial 2-hour glucose (OR = 0.716, P = .025) and VFT/SFT ratio (OR = 0.055, P = .009). In conclusion, treatment with pioglitazone produced an anti-inflammatory effect, decreasing serum hsCRP levels; and a decrease in the VFT/SFT ratio was independently and most strongly associated with the hsCRP-decreasing effect. These results suggest that abdominal fat redistribution preferentially reflects the anti-inflammatory benefits of pioglitazone treatment"
  • Fat around the middle increases the risk of dementia - Science Daily, 11/23/09 - "Anyone carrying a lot of fat around the middle is at greater risk of dying prematurely due to a heart attack or stroke ... If they nevertheless manage to live beyond 70, they run a greater risk of dementia ... women who were broader around the waist than the hips in middle age ran slightly more than twice the risk of developing dementia when they got old"
  • That's a Binge Belly, Not a Beer Belly - WebMD, 9/4/09
  • Fat In The Liver -- Not The Belly -- May Be A Better Marker For Disease Risk - Science Daily, 8/25/09 - "Having too much liver fat is known as nonalcoholic fatty liver disease ... when fat collects in the liver, people experience serious metabolic problems such as insulin resistance, which affects the body's ability to metabolize sugar. They also have increases in production of fat particles in the liver that are secreted into the bloodstream and increase the level of triglycerides"
  • Increase In Visceral Fat During Menopause Linked With Testosterone - Science Daily, 8/20/09 - "The culprit is likely not age, as is commonly believed, but the change in hormone balance that occurs during the menopause transition ... Of all the factors we analyzed that could possibly account for the increase in visceral fat during this period in a woman's lifetime, levels of active testosterone proved to be the one most closely linked with abdominal fat ... in women, it is the change in the hormonal balance – specifically, the increase in active testosterone – that is predominantly responsible for visceral fat, and for the increased risk of cardiovascular disease"
  • Stress Raises Belly Fat, Heart Risks - WebMD, 8/6/09 - "Even compared to other monkeys with the same body mass index and weight, CT scans showed that the stressed monkeys had a great deal more belly fat. And when the researchers looked at the animals' arteries, they found plaque clogging the arteries of the stressed monkeys ... it's not how much fat you have, but where it is located ... Over time, high cortisol levels cause belly fat to accumulate. It also makes individual fat cells get larger ... When you have lots more fat in visceral fat cells and all the characteristics of the metabolic syndrome, each of these things promotes atherosclerosis"
  • Beer consumption and the 'beer belly': scientific basis or common belief? - Eur J Clin Nutr. 2009 Jun 24 - "Beer consumption leads to WC gain, which is closely related to concurrent overall weight gain. This study does not support the common belief of a site-specific effect of beer on the abdomen, the beer belly"
  • Testosterone Therapy Improves Metabolic Syndrome, Liver Steatosis in Hypogonadal Men - Doctor's Guide, 6/22/09 - "After receiving TU for 6 months, their body mass index, waist circumference, and low-density and high-density lipoprotein were improved ... Similarly, their serum cholesterol and triglyceride levels decreased towards the end of the first year of treatment, and then remained stable for the duration of the study ... The mean tryglyceride levels after treatment with TU were 195 mg/dL, down from 312 mg/dL before treatment ... LDL levels decreased after treatment as well, from 164 to 134 mg/dL, whereas HDL levels increased from 36.5 to 54.6 mg/dL"
  • Hormone Therapy Plus Physical Activity Reduce Belly Fat, Body Fat Percentage After Menopause - Science Daily, 6/10/09 - "Older women who take hormone therapy to relieve menopausal symptoms may get the added benefit of reduced body fat if they are physically active"
  • Depression Raises Risk for Type 2 Diabetes - WebMD, 6/8/09 - "Depressed participants who were not being treated had significantly greater insulin resistance than study participants who were not depressed. But treatment for depression appeared to improve insulin sensitivity ... There are several theories about how depression may contribute to type 2 diabetes, but the most widely cited theory involves the stress hormone cortisol ... Cortisol is a key player in blood sugar metabolism and insulin sensitivity ... High cortisol levels are also associated with increased fat deposits around the abdomen, or belly fat, which is a risk factor for type 2 diabetes"
  • Depression Linked With Accumulation Of Visceral Fat - Science Daily, 4/28/09 - "Our results suggest that central adiposity – which is commonly called belly fat – is an important pathway by which depression contributes to the risk for cardiovascular disease and diabetes"
  • Fresh Take on Fructose vs. Glucose - WebMD, 4/21/09 - "Both the groups gained weight during the trial, but imaging studies revealed that most of the added fat in the fructose group occurred in the belly, while most of the fat gained by the glucose group was subcutaneous (under the skin) ... Belly fat, but not subcutaneous fat, has been linked to an increased risk for heart disease and diabetes ... The fructose group had higher total cholesterol and LDL "bad" cholesterol, plus greater insulin resistance, which are consistent with metabolic syndrome, while the glucose group did not"
  • Big Waist Size Linked To Decreased Lung Function - Science Daily, 3/6/09
  • Abdominal Fat Increases Risk of Migraine Attack, Especially in Women - Doctor's Guide, 2/16/09
  • Belly Fat Linked to Risk of Migraines - WebMD, 2/13/09
  • Bad Cholesterol Inhibits The Breakdown Of Peripheral Fat - Science Daily, 11/20/08 - "LDL cholesterol slows the rate of fat breakdown (i.e. lipolysis) in adipocytes, the peripheral cells responsible for fat storage"
  • Belly Fat Doubles Death Risk - WebMD, 11/12/08 - "Belly fat has been linked to an increased risk of heart disease and diabetes. Now an important new study links belly fat to early death ... Each 2-inch increase in waist circumference was associated with close to a 17% increase in mortality in men and a 13% increase in women"
  • Cortisol And Fatty Liver: Researchers Find Cause Of Severe Metabolic Disorders - Science Daily, 9/11/08 - "The researchers in Herzig's team specifically switched off the cortisol receptor in the livers of mice, thus blocking the hormone's effect. As a result, the triglyceride level in the livers of the experimental animals dropped considerably"
  • Belly Fat Linked to Stroke Risk - WebMD, 8/14/08 - "The BMI, however, was not independently associated with an increased risk of stroke ... The risk association for waist measurements was far more powerful. People with bigger waist circumferences (greater than 40 inches for men and 35 inches for women) had four times the stroke risk when compared with people with typical waistlines"
  • Metformin (Glucophage) and bipolar - psycheducation.org - "In some cases this medication can decrease abdominal obesity ... Between 10 and 30% of people taking metformin have a decrease in their B12 levels ... this can show up is "anemia""
  • Belly Fat May Affect Liver Function - Science Daily, 6/10/08 - "It has been shown that people who store body fat in their abdomens are at greater risk to develop diabetes and other chronic illnesses, but why this happens has remained unclear ... Our study found lipid release from abdominal fat was substantially elevated during the night, which may be a primary mechanism leading to insulin resistance, a strong risk factor for type 2 diabetes"
  • Role of Metformin for Weight Management in Patients Without Type 2 Diabetes (June) - Ann Pharmacother. 2008 May 13 - "The weight loss effects of metformin in overweight or obese adults and adolescents without diabetes appear promising; however, trials have been limited by small patient populations and weak design. Metformin may also have a positive effect on metabolic parameters such as waist circumference, fasting insulin and glucose levels, and triglycerides" - See metformin at at OffshoreRx1.com.
  • ACE Inhibitors May Help in Weight Loss - WebMD, 4/28/08 - "the ACE-deficient mice not only broke down fats faster in the liver, they processed blood sugars more quickly than the other mice, making them less likely to develop diabetes ... The study results demonstrate that an ACE deficiency leads to reduction in body fat accumulation in mice and suggests that drugs that affect the renin-angiotensin system, such as ACE inhibitors, might spark weight loss, especially in the midsection" - See ramipril (an ACE inhibitor) at OffshoreRX.
  • Your Belly Fat Could Be Making You Hungrier - Science Daily, 4/16/08
  • Big Bellies Linked to Alzheimer's Disease - washingtonpost.com, 3/26/08 - "People who have big bellies in their 40s are much more likely to get Alzheimer's disease and other forms of dementia in their 70s" - [Science Daily]
  • Why Belly Fat Hurts the Heart - WebMD, 1/29/08 - "Visceral fat brought the most inflammation and the worst atherosclerosis ... After visceral fat transplantation, mice developed less severe atherosclerosis if their chow was laced with the diabetes drug Actos for 10 weeks. But Actos didn't affect atherosclerosis in other mice" - See pioglitazone at OffshoreRx1.com.
  • Pot Belly May Signal Diseased Arteries - WebMD, 8/14/07
  • New Test for Belly Fat? - WebMD, 7/10/07
  • Belly Fat May Drive Inflammatory Processes Associated With Disease - Science Daily, 3/13/07 - "fat cells inside the abdomen are secreting molecules that increase inflammation ... Too much abdominal fat is associated with a defect in the body's response to insulin"
  • Trans Fat Leads To Weight Gain Even On Same Total Calories, Animal Study Shows - Science Daily, 6/19/06 - "Diets rich in trans fat cause a redistribution of fat tissue into the abdomen and lead to a higher body weight even when the total dietary calories are controlled"
  • Eat Trans Fat, Get Big Belly - WebMD, 6/12/06 - "Trans fats make you fatter than other foods with the same number of calories -- but that's not all ...  trans fats increase the amount of fat around the belly"
  • Abdominal Fat Linked To Higher Death Rate In Men, New Study Shows - Science Daily, 4/4/06 - "visceral fat in the abdomen is directly associated with a higher risk of mortality in men"
  • Study: Lifting weights attacks belly fat - USA Today, 3/3/06 - "Women who did the weight-training for two years had only a 7% increase in intra-abdominal fat, compared to a 21% increase in the group given exercise advice"
  • Study links tobacco smoke with belly fat - USATODAY.com, 8/1/05
  • Testosterone Replacement a Double-Edged Sword: Impact of supplementation is largely positive, but adverse effects found among men on highest doses - Clinical Psychiatry News, 8/05 - "Abdominal visceral fat, however, increased by 16.6% in the placebo group, and decreased by 6.8% in men taking testosterone—a significant difference between groups"
  • Research May Provide New Link Between Soft Drinks And Weight Gain - Science Daily, 8/2/05 - "Those consuming the fructose-sweetened water showed significant weight gain over the course of the study, with an average final weight of 48 grams—compared with averages below 44 grams for the other groups—and had about 90 percent more body fat than the mice that consumed water only"
  • Waist circumference as a predictor of insulin resistance in young men - Med Clin (Barc). 2005 Jun 11;125(2):46-50 - "WC of these young men was independently associated with certain cardiovascular risk factors, in particular insulin resistance"
  • Hidden Fat Could Mean Heart Disease Risk - WebMD, 4/11/05 - "Even people of normal weight can have fat folded deep inside their belly, raising their risk of heart disease and diabetes from a condition called metabolic syndrome"
  • Inflammation Key to Belly Fat 's Unhealthy Effects - HealthDay, 3/31/05 - "Inflammation may be the reason why that "spare tire" around the waist raises a person's risk of heart disease ... They checked each woman's abdominal fat for two proteins that promote inflammation -- interleukin 6 and tumor necrosis factor alpha -- and for a third protein that encourages blood clots, called plasminogen activator inhibitor 1 ... These three proteins are all manufactured by fat tissue"
  • Exercise a Must for Losing Deep Belly Fat - WebMD, 3/4/05 - "Even if she diets perfectly, eating all the right foods in ideal amounts, her waistline may not budge unless she works out. Exercise is required to lose excess fat deep in the abdomen, says a new study"
  • Location Of Body Fat Important In Predicting Heart Attack Risk - Science Daily, 11/5/04 - "intra-abdominal fat, or fat stored in and around the internal organs, is most predictive of heart attack risk"
  • Insulin Sensitivity, Insulin Secretion, and Abdominal Fat - Medscape, 10/23/03 - "Insulin resistance is associated with overall obesity and particularly abdominal obesity ... In normal individuals, as insulin sensitivity declines, the ß-cells of the pancreas compensate by secreting more insulin"
  • Obese Individuals Experience Modest Weight Loss with Growth-Hormone Therapy - Doctor's Guide, 6/24/03 - "Most of the fat loss was in the abdominal area"
  • The Dairy Calcium in Yogurt Helps People Lose Belly - WebMD, 4/15/03 - "put 34 obese people on a low-cal diet. Sixteen of them got pills with 400 to 500 mg of calcium per day. The other 18 people ate enough yogurt to give them 1100 mg of calcium per day ... After 12 weeks, everybody lost a lot of fat ... Sixty percent of the yogurt eaters' weight loss was belly fat, while only 26% of the comparison group's loss was belly fat"
  • High-Fat Diet Ups Dangerous 'Hidden' Fat - WebMD, 3/31/03
  • Exercise Training, Without Weight Loss, Increases Insulin Sensitivity and Postheparin Plasma Lipase Activity in Previously Sedentary Adults - Medscape, 3/19/03 - "Exercise, without weight loss, increases SI [insulin sensitivity] and PHPL activity in previously sedentary adults, without changing K2 or fasting lipid levels. Furthermore, increased LPL is associated with a decreased total:HDL ratio, and an increased LPL:HL ratio is associated with a decreased waist circumference. Therefore, even modest amounts of exercise in the absence of weight loss positively affect markers of glucose and fat metabolism in previously sedentary, middle-aged adults" - I threw this out because I didn't know that "decreased total:HDL ratio ... is associated with a decreased waist circumference" - This might be a long shot but that sounds like increasing insulin sensitivity via such methods as metformin and increasing HDL via supplements such as niacin might decrease pot bellies. - Ben
  • Belly full of danger - USA Today, 2/25/03 - "people with wide girths are more likely to have large amounts of deep-hidden belly fat around their organs. It might be the most dangerous kind of fat and could increase a person's risk of diabetes, heart disease, stroke and some types of cancer ... visceral or intra-abdominal fat, is linked to high cholesterol, high insulin, high triglycerides, high blood pressure and other problems ... So far, physical activity and weight loss appear to be the key ... It's very likely that genes, sex hormones and stress hormones (cortisol) play a role"
  • How to whittle your middle - MSNBC, 2/18/03
  • Big gut, other factors can kill you - USA Today, 12/3/02 - "People with this syndrome have at least three of the following risk factors: high blood sugar; a waist circumference of greater than 40 inches for men or 35 inches for women; lower-than-average HDL cholesterol (the so-called good cholesterol); high triglycerides and high blood pressure ... men who had the syndrome at the study's start had a two to three times greater chance of dying of a heart attack or a stroke during the study than men who did not have this collection of risk factors ... People getting a checkup should ask their family doctor to look for metabolic syndrome"
  • Errant Enzyme Causes Big Bellies - WebMD, 12/11/01 - "They looked at an enzyme called 11-beta hydroxysteroid dehydrogenase type 1. This enzyme is able to increase the level of cortisol in fat cells without raising the level of cortisol in the blood ... The researchers genetically engineered mice that overproduce this enzyme. They made sure that the level of the enzyme was equivalent to the level previously found in the fatty tissue of overweight humans. As expected, the mice produced extra amounts of cortisol in their fat cells, but not in their blood ... The next step was to compare these mice to mice that produced normal amounts of the enzyme. Even when fed a low-fat diet, the genetically-altered mice developed a pot belly while the normal mice did not. The problem was even worse when the altered mice were fed a high-fat diet ... We were surprised to find that it took only a modest increase in this enzyme to cause the mice to become ... obese"
  • Single enzyme to blame for potbellies: study - MSNBC, 12/6/01 - "What they found was that a single enzyme in fat cells that raises levels of cortisol — the “fight or flight” stress hormone — triggers fat accumulation around the belly and its associated ill effects ... The researchers were drawn to the role of cortisol because patients with a rare illness known as Cushing syndrome — who have too much of the steroid hormone in their blood — develop severe obesity concentrated around their middles and become diabetic ... Since overweight people without Cushing syndrome typically don’t have too much cortisol in their bloodstreams, Flier hypothesized that they may be producing high cortisol levels solely in their fat cells — possibly because the enzyme HSD-1, which makes cortisol from an inactive molecule, is overactive ... The level of cortisol in their stomach fat tissue was 15 percent to 30 percent higher than in their non-engineered counterparts" - Note: The way I read this article, the final culprit is still the cortisol and there are ways to reduce cortisol now.   The link went dead on this but I found a copy at http://www.cushingsonline.com/newsletters/email/12-4-2002.htm (scroll about 2/3rds the way down).
  • Stress May Cause Excess Abdominal Fat In Otherwise Slender Women - Doctor's Guide, 11/15/00
  • Avandia Positively Impacts On Factors Linked With Insulin Resistance - Doctor's Guide, 9/18/00 - "Increased deposits of fat around the internal organs and in the liver are commonly associated with insulin resistance and are found in many type 2 diabetes patients ... Avandia helps prevent accumulation of fat around the internal organs and significantly reduces hepatic fat"

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