12:52 p.m., February 16, 2021
For the first time, a highly effective therapeutic principle against obesity could be on the horizon. A US study with the monoclonal antibody bimagrumab achieved a 20 percent reduction in fat mass in diabetics. A huge study from Spain proves the urgency of such treatment strategies: Even fit overweight people have a high health risk.
Drug treatment of Overweight and obesity (BMI over 30) has been a problem for many years. Most of the drugs approved for this purpose had only a minor effect and had to be withdrawn from the market because of side effects. As early as 2007, scientists in the British Medical Journal came to a devastating result in a meta-analysis of 30 studies with patients (BMI over 35): The one that has since been taken off the market Rimonabant reduced weight by only 4.7 kilos, Sibutramine (also no longer available) by 4.2 kilos and Orlistat (inhibits fat absorption from the intestine) by just 2.9 kilograms.
But now something new could come. A treatment with the monoclonal antibody bimagrumab, which stimulates muscle growth by blocking activin type 2 receptors, was involved in a phase 2 study in the United States Obese patients with type 2 diabetes lowered their body weight through a significant reduction in fat mass.
Eat a handful of nuts a day. One study showed that a handful of nuts a day helps protect yourself against cardiovascular disease and cancer.
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Use every opportunity for everyday movement, look forward to every staircase you can walk. Leave the car and ride a bike. Get off the tram earlier and walk a stop or two.
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The average office worker can just manage 1500 steps a day. But it should be at least 6000 steps to stay healthy – with 10,000 steps you can already do something actively to improve your health.
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Loneliness is a risk factor for dementia, but an active social life promotes the psyche and wellbeing. Make invitations regularly and stay in touch.
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Take a walk after you eat – it really helps digestion.
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You should eat a maximum of 450 grams of meat and sausages per week. A vegan day a week can help.
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Complex carbohydrates fill you up longer and are much richer in nutrients, whereas white flour products are “empty” calories.
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Spend two to three days a month in the forest, this strengthens the immune system in the long term.
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Bimagrumab had been investigated as a therapy concept for the treatment of a rare muscle disease with muscle wasting and muscle weakness. In the efficacy study, however, it was noticed that not only was muscle growth promoted, but also body fat was lost through the therapy. 75 patients were then enrolled in a phase 2 study. This was about Type 2 diabetics with overweight (BMI 28) to so-called morbid obesity (BMI 40). In addition to diet and exercise counseling, the subjects received an infusion with the monoclonal antibody every month for 48 weeks. It happened how Steven Heymsfield from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge (USA) and his colleagues reported in the US medical journal JAMA, to a significant decrease in body fat mass 20.5 percent or 7.5 kilograms, while diet and exercise advice alone only reduced fat mass by 0.5 percent or 0.18 kilograms. The difference was statistically significant. In addition, the muscle mass increased by 3.6 percent, as can now be read in the Deutsches Ärzteblatt. However, because of the effects on the liver and pancreas, a switch to weekly administration by injection under the skin (subcutaneously) is evidently necessary for a further development of the principle.
Major factor in type 2 diabetes
In type 2 diabetics, being overweight or obese is a very important factor in the development of the disease. Type 2 diabetes can also be significantly alleviated or even eliminated by losing weight.
Body training alone has only a minor influence on the health risk of overweight people. According to a new Spanish study with the evaluation of data from 527,662 Spaniards with health insurance (average age: 42.3 years, BMI 26.2 plus / minus 4.3), the saying “fat but fit” has little meaning. In the study, 42 percent of the participants had normal weight, 41 percent were overweight and 24.2 percent were obese.
On the Cardiovascular hazards physical activity had only limited influence. Obese inactive men were 5.94 times more likely to have high blood pressure than normal-weight, active controls. In women, the risk was even 7.28 times higher, the German Medical Journal reported on the study in the European Journal of Preventive Cardiology.
Even when the obese were physically active, the risk of high blood pressure was increased by a factor of 4.93 in men and 5.45-fold in women. Movement-inactive people with normal body weight, on the other hand, only had a 25 percent (men) and 30 percent (women) increased risk of hypertension.
The same was true of diabetes. Normal-weight men were 56 percent more likely to suffer from physical inactivity than normal-weight, physically active men. In inactive women of normal weight, the risk was increased by 27 percent.
“You can’t be ‘fat but healthy'”
In contrast, the risk of diabetes increased by a factor of 5.42 (men) among inactive obese people and by 6.26 times among women. But also the physically active, obese men were 3.62 times more likely to develop type 2 diabetes than normal-weight, physically active men. There was an increase in the risk by a factor of 4.18 among women.
“You can’t be ‘fat but healthy’. Obviously you can’t compensate the health risks of being overweight with physical activity”, study author Alejandro Lucia from the European University of Madrid was quoted in a press release by the European Society of Cardiology (ESC).