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belly-fatObesity continues to be one of the greatest health challenges in the United States. More than a third of all adults are overweight or obese, and roughly the same goes for our children and teens. If we keep heading in the same direction the impact on our national health could be devastating, which is why experts continue to examine the cause and effect of carrying excess weight in the hope of finding a solution. Here are two new obesity studies making headlines:

Obesity Shortens Life Expectancy
Scientists in Canada recently determined that being obese can take years off your life—and the younger you are obese, the worse off you may be. Using data gathered from national health survey results, a team of researchers developed a computer model to project disease outcomes in overweight and obese adults (compared with those of normal weight) between the ages of 20 and 79.

They focused in particular on heart disease and diabetes and found that obesity is associated with a higher risk of both, which significantly reduces not just life expectancy but the years of “healthy life” an individual should have. Those who were overweight (with a BMI of 25) lost between 0 to 3 years, while obese people (BMI 30+) lost 1 to 6 years and the severely obese (BMI 35+) saw their life expectancy decreased by 1 to 8 years. Not only that, but the long-term effects were more severe in younger overweight and obese people.

Experts Urge Policies to Reduce Childhood Obesity
Focusing on childhood obesity in particular, results of a recent study published in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine offer specific interventions for reducing obesity among children and adolescents. Of the 26 recommended policies examined, three were chosen based on projected effectiveness: after-school activity programs; an excise tax on sodas and sugary beverages (which, in turn, would channel money toward obesity prevention programs); and a ban on fast food ads aimed at children. Experts determined that all three policies, if put into action, would reduce childhood obesity prevalence in America by 2032.

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It seems like everyone is talking about probiotics these days, using words like cultures and strains and Bifidobut what do you REALLY need to know when choosing a probiotic? Is there a difference from one supplement to the next? Do certain formulas target specific needs? And why can you find some on the shelf and some in the refrigerated section at your local market?

Watch this eye-opening video to find out!
The 6 Rules of Probiotics

 

The 6 Rules of Probiotics explains how to choose a probiotic based on a handful of simple guidelines that are surprisingly easy to remember—including the total amount of good bacteria per capsule, also called the culture count. In addition, you will learn all about the bacteria in your gut (most of which are good guys and help with things like vitamin production and supporting your immune system) as well as what can happen when your digestive system is out of balance. Be sure to check it out!

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