The International Association for the Study of Obesity Newsletter

May 2013



Welcome to IASO's May Newsletter. Please see this month's highlights below:     


  • Obesity, Physical Activity and Cancer Conference huge success;
  • Few places remaining for Obesity and Pregnancy Hot Topic Conference;  
  • Join us in Dublin for SCOPE School 2013;  
  • Award nominations now open for ICO 2014;      
  • Membership opportunities;
  • New trend charts in our Obesity Data Portal;
  • Making agriculture more sensitive to health;  
  • Behaviour and 'lifestyle' diseases;
  • Download the latest papers from our leading journals; 
  • Latest articles of Obesity in the News.



Hot Topic


We would like to take this opportunity to thank everyone who participated in the Obesity, Physical Activity and Cancer Hot Topic Conference last month. We reached our full capacity at nearly 100 delegates and were delighted by the excellent speakers included in the programme.  


If you were unable to attend please view the speaker presentations here.   


There's still time to register for our second Hot Topic Conference of the year, 'Obesity and Pregnancy'. This event will be held in Boston from 15th - 17th May. Please view the scientific programme here. If you are unable to join us for the full event, one day registrations are now available - register online here.  




SCOPE School Dublin will be held from 11th - 13th July. View the programme here and register online now to avoid disappointment.



We are delighted to announce that award nominations have now opened for ICO 2014. Please go to the IASO website here for full information.  



For more information on any of our events please contact the events team - events@iaso.org.



You may not realise that there has been a very important change to IASO Membership which could help IASO's benefits reach a much wider audience. IASO Membership is now open to more than just National Associations. Other obesity related organisations can apply to become IASO Members. If you are involved with other organisations that may benefit from becoming an IASO Member or would like to refer us to an organisation that you feel is appropriate, please do not hesitate to get in touch with our Membership Manager, Heather Budd (hbudd@iaso.org), to discuss the opportunity.


Obesity Data Portal 

This month we have reviewed our trend charts. We have added recent female Australian data to our morbid obesity charts and we have also created a new chart demonstrating the trends in combined overweight and obesity prevalence in China by region and gender. To view or download please visit our data portal page here. If you have any data that you would like to see presented please send your requests to obesity@iaso.org.

Making agriculture more sensitive to health

Experts at a three-day 'Meeting of Minds' held at the World Health Organization in Geneva at the end of March discussed how to ensure that agriculture is attuned to the needs of human health - both by providing adequate nutrition where there are shortages and by providing products that do not encourage obesity and chronic diseases. IASO was represented by Dr Tim Lobstein, and IASO's think-tank, IOTF, was represented by Professor Boyd Swinburn, while other members of the IOTF Scientific Advisory Committee were also present.


Issues raised included the inherent 'competition' between local, traditional food supplies and highly processed food products promoted in 'Westernised' diets, which threaten to re-shape local agriculture. Food waste was also discussed, not only in terms of lost production but also including the notion that food was 'wasted' if it was being eaten excessively to the point of creating overweight and obese consumers.  

Behaviour and 'lifestyle' diseases 

A one-day discussion of behaviour change in relation to tobacco use, alcohol consumption and food intake was held in London in April, by the British non-profit organisation Cancer UK. The meeting considered the common issues of industrially-driven promotion of products which can cause harm, and governmental policies to shape behaviour.


Obesity was discussed in terms of the innate drives to seek food and the difficulty people have resisting overconsumption in a food-rich environment. Interventions at the rational level were only likely to succeed if supported by changes in the environment to make healthier choices easier. IASO's Dr Tim Lobstein also spoke about the prevailing narrative on obesity which tends to blame the individual for their obesity and their failure to lose weight, indicating that part of the solution would be to re-frame the discussion so that it does not stigmatise overweight but looks at food environments and who designs them.  


Clinical Obesity...


A message from Dr Matt Sabin, Deputy Editor...


Clinical Obesity Journal

The following articles taken from our February - April issue are available on early view here. Firstly Taylor et al report research priorities in childhood obesity management identified through a Delphi survey of Australian and New Zealand obesity clinicians and researchers. Hsia and colleagues have examined the way in which screening of obese paediatric patients for co-morbidities has been undertaken at Texas Children's Hospital (US) - finding that, even within such a tertiary specialist setting, adequate screening was being undertaken in only half of the attendees. This is an important paper and highlights how much more education and training is needed in clinical obesity management - especially in children. 


A paper by Midthjell et al looks into trends in overweight and obesity over 22 years in Norwegian adults. It is often thought that Scandinavian countries have been relatively immune from the scourge of obesity that affects countries across the world.  It seems, however that Norway is showing no signs of a halt in the increase of obesity.  From three national surveys spanning 1984 to 2008 there has been a continuous shift in the distribution curve of BMI and waist circumference to the right, demonstrating that the increase in body weight was occurring in all weight groups; the increases are greatest in the young. The authors found increases in sedentariness and speculate that this may relate to the particularly marked increases in waist circumference. With more and more people being overweight or obesity, now is the time to properly develop evidence-based clinical management programs.


Randomized controlled trials in clinical obesity are difficult to undertake and often complicated by problems such as high non-compliance rates, many potential confounders, and particular ethical issues. It's important, therefore, that we collect data from all sources. Liu and colleagues report their findings from a large group of individuals attending a Canadian Multidisciplinary Weight Management Program. They identify several important predictors of success, including age, ethnicity and comorbidities such as Type 2 diabetes. Gjevestad and colleagues also report interesting findings from a comparison study of secondary and tertiary care. In this report, they show that intensive efforts often reap the biggest rewards - findings that others have also reported. The question, of course, is always how to fund and deliver these types of intensive interventions, and more long-term data are needed regarding outcomes from specific programs (with appropriate health economic evaluations) before we can decide upon sweeping reforms to clinical practice delivery.


Two papers address bariatric surgical issues - the first reporting the unusual complication of mesenteric vein thrombosis following laparoscopic sleeve gastrectomy, and the second assessing psychological barriers to bariatric surgery. We hope, as the journal expands, we will receive more papers like these which focus on the medical aspects of bariatric surgical programs.

This issue also includes a case report of a man who, with multidisciplinary care and a two-step bariatric intervention, lost 170kg - resolving many of the associated medical and psychological problems. It is interesting to see the identified determinants of his success and think about how we can develop research programs to assess their influence on mainstream clinical outcomes.


Clinical Obesity continues to grow in size and quality, we are excited by its development and look forward to receiving your papers.


Obesity Reviews... 


A message from Professor David York, Editor-in-Chief...


The following papers appear in the May issue of Obesity Reviews:
Qualitative studies among obese children and adolescents: a systematic review of the literature. J. Lachal, M. Orri, M. Speranza, B. Falissard, H. Lefevre, QUALIGRAMH, M.-R. Moro & A. Revah-Levy.
Risk of Completed Suicide after Bariatric Surgery: A Systematic Review.

C. Peterh�nsel, D. Petroff, G. Klinitzke, A. Kersting & B. Wagner.

Efficacy and safety of lorcaserin in obese adults: a meta-analysis of 1-year randomised controlled trials (RCTs) and narrative review on short-term RCTs. E.
W. Chan, Y. He, C. S. L. Chui, A. Y. S. Wong, W. C. Y. Lau & I. C. K. Wong.
Serum 25-hydroxy vitamin D levels in relation to body mass index: a systematic review and meta-analysis.
P. Saneei, A. Salehi-Abargouei & A. Esmaillzadeh.
Chronobiology, endocrinology, and energy- and food-reward homeostasis.

H. K. J. Gonnissen, T. Hulshof & M. S. Westerterp-Plantenga.

Association of obstructive sleep apnoea with the presence and severity of non-alcoholic fatty liver disease. A systematic review and meta-analysis.
G. Musso, M. Cassader, C. Olivetti, F. Rosina, G. Carbone & R. Gambino.

Max Rubner 1854-1932.
S. R�ssner.

To read articles online or find out more visit Obesity Reviews  on Wiley Online Library here





Pediatric Obesity...


A message from Professor Michael Goran, Editor-in-Chief...

Look out for our special issue on the topic of 'Sugars and obesity in children' to be released in conjunction with the European Congress on Obesity (ECO) meeting in Liverpool from 12th - 15th May. In this special issue we will have a variety of editorials, reviews and new papers that focus specifically on the links between dietary sugars and obesity as they relate to children during growth and development. Read more articles here.



Submit your paper to Pediatric Obesity today... 




International Journal of Obesity...


IJO Cover

The International Journal of Obesity (IJO) provides a multi-disciplinary forum for basic, clinical and applied studies focusing on obesity and related disorders, including a quarterly pediatric highlights issue.   


A pick of our recent most highly cited papers:


Replication of 13 obesity loci among Singaporean Chinese, Malay and Asian-Indian populations  


Body mass index classification misses subjects with increased cardiometabolic risk factors related to elevated adiposity


Exogenous peptide YY3-36 and Exendin-4 further decrease food intake, whereas octreotide increases food intake in rats after Roux-en-Y gastric bypass


Neural correlates of the volitional regulation of the desire for food


Sign up for FREE to receive Table of Contents e-alerts and never miss an issue.


Submit your paper to IJO today...   


Obesity in the News 

Latest articles of obesity in the news...


Please note that all external links are provided for information only, their inclusion is not indicative of IASO endorsement.

Prof. Lopez laureate Professor of the University of Melbourne suggests that the challenge is to heed the warnings shown in the data, and for state and federal governments to continue to implement bold public health interventions. He speaks at a two day conference on the Global Burden of Disease. 

Biology of binge eating (May 1st, 2013)

Female rats are much more likely to binge eat than male rats, according to new research that provides some of the strongest evidence yet that biology plays a role in eating disorders.


UK: Scotland's primary school children obesity levels remain high (April 30th, 2013)

The number of primary school year one children obese in Scotland has remained at a high level for more than a decade. Figures from 2011-2012 show that 15% of primary school year one children are overweight or obese.


To see more of the latest articles of obesity in the news please visit our news page here.  



If you have any comments or information you would like us to include in the next IASO newsletter please contact:


Emma Graham

Publishing and Communications Manager




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