Saturday, August 12, 2006

It's not the chocolate, it's germs

An article in the New York Times Sunday Magazine talks about new evidence which suggests that obesity may not be entirely due to diet or genetics, it may be due to the microbes present in our bodies.

First reaction: Yes! No more guilt! It's not my fault I'm putting on weight. It's the tiny little germs in my gut. They're the ones who don't have any self-control.

Second reaction:

But if genes or viral infection or gut microflora are involved, then for some people 3,500 calories might not equal a pound of fat, and 150 fewer calories a day might not mean they’ll lose 10 pounds in a year. As scientists continue to investigate how obese people are different, we can only hope that a side benefit will be a more largehearted understanding of what it means to be fat and how hard it is to try to become, and to remain, less fat.
You mean that because of some unicellular little git somewhere deep inside me, I now have to diet harder than thin people to lose weight? Aaarggh!!

Go read the article. I'd love to pontificate more about it, but the Ad-36 in my lower intestine has a sudden craving for well-done steak.


Szerelem said...

i read that article after a huge helping of ice cream and chocolate fudge (which was a guilty pleasure in any case!).
How depressing. The world is inherently unfair.

sunshine said...

the amount of research in this field is astonishing!!
and i had to search desperately for funding for my research in chem engg... maybe i shud consider switching fields!

km said...

Gives "germ warfare" a whole new meaning.

MockTurtle said...

A "well-done steak"? Your adenoviruses have spectacularly bad taste.
Anyway, I guess folks who have the virus can simply get a tape-worm to keep it company and to keep their weight in balance.

30in2005 said...

All that money wasted on gyms, diet cookbooks and slimming supplements. They tell us this NOW!? I want steak too please....

Wild Reeds said...

Dear Falstaff,
LOL... * little wrist-slap to the Ad-36 in your gut *