New research has discovered that those that have the fat gene (FTO) present in their system are able to lose weight just as effectively as those who do not have the gene.
This is positive news as there are an estimated 2.1 billion adults worldwide classed as overweight or obese, which will no doubt put a strain on their countries medical experts.
What research was undertaken?
In the study published in the British Medical Journal an international team of researchers looked at the results of 8 randomised controlled trials on almost 10,000 volunteers.
The aim was to look to see if there was any relation between the FTO gene and various weight loss methods, such as diet, exercise or medication.
The researchers found that while the volunteers who had the FTO gene were slightly heavier by 0.89 kg at the start of the trials, this fat gene did not reduce their ability to lose weight.
Despite looking at various aspects, for example:
- Intervention type
- Intervention length
- Sample size
- Baseline body mass index
- Age category
Their body mass index, body weight and waist circumference was not affected by the FTO or fat gene.
While there were limitations to the analysis the researchers concluded that this is:
“An important finding for the development of effective weight loss interventions in the context of the global epidemic of obesity.”
And to fight obesity we:
“Should focus on improving lifestyle behaviours, principally eating patterns and physical activity, since these will be effective in achieving sustained weight loss irrespective of FTO genotype.”
What can you do to lose weight?
Now that it has been proven that having this fat gene does not impact your ability to lose weight then there is no excuse not to make the necessary changes you need to make.
For instance, you could cut back on junk food and instead replace it with whole foods, which are foods that have been minimally processed.
Foods like fruits and vegetables are good examples of whole foods.
What you drink also has an impact on your weight, so also try to cut down on soft drinks, even those diet versions as they have also been shown to cause sugary cravings.
Instead opt for water, as it contains zero calories and can help curb your appetite.
Exercise is also recommended, but there are plenty of ways you can burn calories off during the day if you wanted too.
Finally, try to get plenty of sleep (7 hours each night) and to watch your stress levels. They can both affect your ability to lose weight, regardless of having the fat gene or not.