Monday, April 29, 2013

Vaccines to Fight Obesity and the Effects of Obesity

A search for effective ways to fight obesity is an ongoing endeavor. Diet, exercise, lifestyle changes, and bariatric surgery are the methods usually employed. However, some researchers are looking at vaccines, as a possible tool in the obesity fight. And the researchers are not just looking at vaccines as a way to help the obese person lose weight, but they are also investigating vaccines as a way to reduce the unhealthy effects of obesity.

We've all heard people say that they can't lose weight because of a slow metabolism. While that assertion may or may not be true, raising the metabolic rate can cause a person to burn more calories than normal. And some experts believe that a vaccine might be used to raise that rate.

Last year, researchers at  Braasch Biotech LLC  indicated that they have developed a vaccine, they call "flab jab," that raises the metabolic rate in mice by attacking "a hormone that promotes slow metabolism and weight gain." According to the researchers, injection of the vaccine caused the test mice to lose ten percent of their weight. While more research is needed, the vaccine does show promise.

Treating obesity related comorbidities with a vaccine is also being looked at by researchers. Fat cells secrete proteins that cause inflammation that can be harmful. This inflammation is associated with insulin resistance, high blood pressure, and other ailments.

A group at the Methodist Diabetes and Metabolism Institute believes that the comorbidities related to obesity, such as type 2 diabetes, heart attack, and other illnesses, may be reduced with a vaccine. According to the scientists,  "People who got the vaccine would still be overweight, but the strain on their organs and organ systems would be greatly diminished, allowing doctors to better treat the obesity itself." While the scientists performing the research realize that a healthy diet and exercise may be the best way to fight obesity, they also believe that an effective vaccine that reduces obesity-related inflammation would reduce the worst consequences of the disease.

The above mentioned vaccines may eventually prove to be useful tools in the obesity fight. Hence, medical weight loss professionals should keep tabs on this type of research.
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