Women, Biology, Obesity and Health: Implications of the Emerging Bioscience Research
|Suzi J Penny and Rachel A Page*|
|Institute of Food, Nutrition and Human Health, Massey University, Wellington, New Zealand|
|Corresponding Author :||Rachel A Page
Associate Professor, Institute of Food, Nutrition and Human Health College of Health, Massey University at Wellington
Private Bag 756, Wellington 6140, New Zealand
Tel: +64 4 801 5799 ex 62122
Fax: +64 4 801 4994
E-mail: [email protected]
|Received March 28, 2013; Accepted April 30, 2013; Published June 05, 2013|
|Citation: Penny SJ, Page RA (2013) Women, Biology, Obesity and Health: Implications of the Emerging Bioscience Research. Bioenergetics 2:106. doi:10.4172/2167-7662.1000106|
|Copyright: © 2013 Penny SJ, et al. This is an open-access article distributed under the terms of the Creative Commons Attribution License, which permits unrestricted use, distribution, and reproduction in any medium, provided the original author and source are credited.|
Background: We live in a society where a slim body is seen as the ideal and, particularly over recent years, BMI is equated to health. The response has been a plethora of anti-fat messages, public health interventions and a profitable, thriving weight loss industry. These have been based on the simplistic presumption that excess weight is merely a case of too many kilojoules ingested compared to those expended and that weight loss can be readily achieved by addressing that imbalance and with this stigmatization and frustration for those whose body size exceeds the accepted norm. Many women know well from personal experience that slimness is not simply a matter of diet and will power and easily obtainable by all. The purpose of this paper is to present the accumulating body of current bioscience research that is confirming this.
Methods: A multi-disciplinary literature search was conducted using the Web of Knowledge search engine since it provides a broad-based platform with access to research across the different core sciences including Current Contents Connect, Biological Abstracts, MEDLINE, CAB Abstracts, and ISI proceedings and relevant social sciences.
Results and Conclusions: Inherent biological factors are important determinants in energy metabolism, fat storage and vulnerability to weight gain. These factors include genetics, early development environment, epigenetics and neurohormonal factors that regulate energy metabolism including those specific to women. Emerging research is also re-examining the simplistic link between BMI and health issues such as increased cardiovascular disease risk and fertility. This paper discusses the implications of this emerging bioscience research with a specific focus on women’s health.