Youngsters in UK getting fatter


London: UK youngsters are getting fatter than ever. According to a new report the number of overweight 11-15-year-olds has doubled in ten years and they are so fat that it may soon damage their health.

Sitting around watching TV, playing video and computer games and overeatting rubbish food are all to blame

Recent research predicts that by 2050 about 60 per cent of men, 50 per cent of women and 25 per cent of children in the UK will be clinically obese.

The Foresight report calculated that the health time-bomb will cost the country an extra £45 billion a year by 2050 if the loss of productivity from people who suffer obesity-related healthcare problems is added to the cost of treating them.

First diet pill approved by the FDA goes on sale in US

Los Angeles: The first over-the-counter diet drug approved by the US Food & Drug Administration has gone on sale. In some cities there were stampedes as the drug called Alli sold out.

Alli is a lower dose version of the prescription-only drug called Xenical that blocks absorption of fat. It works by disabling some of the natural enzymes in the digestive system that break down fat for absorption. When those enzymes can’t do their job, excess fat passes through the body.

Those who use alli “may recognize it in the toilet as something that looks like the oil on top of pizza,” according to the product Web site – Nutrients absorbed from carbohydrates and proteins are not affected

The drug blocks about one-quarter of fat consumed. When used along with a healthy diet plan and regular exercise, about half of people taking Alli in clinical studies lost 5 percent of their body weight in six months.

But the drug has some unpleasant side effects. Digestive side effects include gas with oily spotting, loose stool, and hard-to-control bowel movements, reports its manufacturer GlaxoSmithKline.These side effects are more likely when a person consumes more than 30 percent of fat in a meal.

The drug is relatively expensive at $40 to $50 for 20- and 30-day starter kits may have put customers off.

UK has higher levels of bad fats in foods than rest of Europe

Copenhagen: Some convenience foods in the UK contain more unhealthy fats than the same foods bought in other parts of Europe, a study by Danish scientists has found.

An international survey of McDonald’s and Kentucky Fried Chicken (KFC) outlets, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, shows how customers are being unwittingly exposed to potentially harmful levels of the processed fats – trans fats. Two tip supermarkets Sainsbury’s and Tesco have already announced they are removing trans fats from own-brand products.

Trans fats are produced by heating vegetable oils to very high temperatures or by bubbling hydrogen into them. They are used for frying in fast-food outlets and to help prolong the shelf life of cakes and biscuits.

Eating 5 grams of trans fats daily can increase the risk of heart disease by 25%, according to research. Most consumers are unaware of the amount of trans fats they are eating because manufacturers and fast-food outlets are not legally obliged to declare the volumes.

The survey has shown the level of trans fats can vary widely between apparently identical products. Researchers bought a large serving of chicken nuggets and french fries from outlets of McDonald’s in America and Europe.

Sixteen per cent of the cooking oil used for the french fries was comprised of trans fats in the UK, compared with 10% in Germany, 5% in Spain and 1% in Denmark.

An outlet in New York had the highest levels of trans fats, with each meal containing more than 10 grams, compared with more than 6 grams in the UK, over 5 grams in France and less than 1 gram in Denmark.

The researchers also bought chicken nuggets with fries from KFC outlets. Hungary had the most trans fats, with 25 grams in one serving. The UK serving had about 3 grams of trans fats.

McDonald’s said trans fats levels varied between countries because of the use of different oils: British outlets use rapeseed oil, while palm oil is used in Denmark. The company is aiming to cut trans fats in British outlets to the levels in Denmark by 2008.

KFC said is striving to find alternative oils to cut trans fats. :

Unhealthy fats lead to pot belly syndrome

North Carolina: Unhealthy fats, such as those used in processed foods, can alter body shape giving you a fat middle, a new study has found.

Scientists at the Wake Forest University school of medicine in North Carolina carried out research over a six-year period, in which two sets of monkeys were fed either hydrogenated fat and the others given monosaturated fats.

At the end of the study the animals fed the hydrogenated fat diet had a 7.2% incease in body weight, compared with 1.8% for those that consumed monosaturated fats.

The study concluded that people who eat lots of pastries, cakes and ready meals containing hydrogenated fat are likely to put on weight around the stomach and suffer subsequent ill health.

Earlier studies have shown that unhealthy fats contribute to cardiovascular diseases, furring up of the arteries and diabetes.



Even though low-fat foods have never been more popular, fat or lipids are essential to our bodies and skin. In fact a lack of them can cause fast ageing of the skin. It should also be noted that heating oils destroys essential fatty acids (EFAs) and if it is smoking hot it becomes carcinogenic (cancer causing).

Bad fats – saturated (hard) fat is found in dairy products and meats. These cause obesity, heart disease, strokes and other illnesses and not necessary for the body. The fat deposits itself in arteries as well as causing weight problems.

Hydrogenated (hardened) fats are liquid fats that have been converted into solids, producing trans fatty acids, which increase blood cholestrol. Many margarines have been hydrogenated and the fat is also found in processed foods. TFAs are linked to heart disease and some cancers

Good fats – unsaturated – contain Essential Fatty Acids and oil the skin from the inside out protecting it against fine lines and wrinkles and lowering cholestrol. They also transport vitamins A, D, E and K around the body. EFAs are found in cold pressed oils, nuts and seeds and oily fish.

The EFA Omega-3 contains three different fatty acids EPA, DHA and ALA and is found in oily fish such as sardines, herrings, mackerel, tuna and salmon, linseeds, walnuts, walnut oil, flax seeds and oil; Omega-6 sunflower and seasame seeds, safflower, soya and linseed.

Studies suggest that an increased consumption of Omega 3, for example, may have positive health benefits, including a healthy heart, supple joints and enhanced learning and concentration in children. It also helps build the brain and eyes.

Souces of Omega 3 include:

Oily Fish

Oily fish is the best source of this vital nutrient. A 150g portion of mackerel or kippers provides 3g of EPA/DHA and you should eat two to four portions of oily fish per week. Girls and women of reproductive age are advised to eat slightly less because of potential pollutants in the fish.. Other good oily fish include salmon and trout, tuna and herring.


Eggs contain small amounts of longchain fatty acids (mainly DHA) but not enough to be a good source. Omega 3-enriched eggs are excellent for boosting intake.

Fruit juice

You will not get any from normal fruit juice but some now have added oils.–

Tinned fish

Choose fish with the whole of the body such as sardines, salmon, mackeral and pilchards. Tuna is not so good because most of the oil has been removed.


Organic milk can be up to two-thirds higher in Omega 3 ALA due to the cows’ clover-rich diet.

Cereal Bars

Many are now enriched with Omega 3 are a great idea for people who do not like oily fish.


Although nuts may be high calorie they contain some good fats, particularly ALA.

Flax seeds

Flax seeds and oil contain a high proportion of ALA. Eaten with thefibre they helo to maintain bowel regularity as well as good blood sugar and lower cholesterol levels.