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May 1, 2012
It is not a secret that the current obesity rates which have been increasing lately in quite a fast pace go on rising, despite great global public efforts directed on combating the problem of obesity in modern people. Unfortunately, as the statistics says, people are growing fatter and fatter, including young children and new generations. This makes scientists look for new effective solutions and find possible new explanations of this terrible tendency. In particular, for many years specialists are trying to find out, what can be a leading cause or a number of leading causes for escalating public obesity rates. Recently, a new theory regarding the issue has been published and attracted a lot of public interest, both from experts and general public.
A group of Danish scientists at the Research Centre for Prevention and Health at Glostrup University Hospital proposed a very interesting hypothesis: today’s people around the globe can be getting fatter and fatter due to increased levels of CO2 in the air. A lot is known about the ways how CO2 affects our life, and year by year the emissions of CO2 have been becoming larger and larger. Lars-Georg Hersoug, a Danish expert, came up with the idea that increasing amounts of CO2 in the air can have something to do with public health. For many years him and his scientific group have been monitoring the lifestyle and nutrition habits of modern Danes, in the framework of MONICA studies (Monitoring of Trends and Determinants in Cardio-vascular Disease).
The scientists were surprised to notice that the percentage of randomly taken slim and fat people who participated in the study and put on weight during the 22-year period of time, was proportional to the increase of CO2 emissions in the country for the same period of time. Further research has shown that CO2 affects human neuropeptide hormone orexine which is responsible for energy expenditure and plays a role in metabolism. “The normal theory is that fat people are getting fatter and fatter because they don’t move as much as they should. But the study showed that thin people also get fatter, and this happened over the whole of the 22-year period of the study,” Hersoug commented on the findings of his study group.
Danish expert supports his hypothesis with the idea that increased CO2 levels make us eat more. He even refers to the following chain reactions: increased CO 2 in the air makes our blood more acidic, our brain receives certain signals and we want to eat more, that causes us getting fatter and fatter. As other research has found, the people exposed to CO2 eat up to 6 per cent more compared to those people who were in normal climatic conditions. At the same time, according to Hersoug, several other studies did not support this hypothesis. You can read more about the findings of Danish experts regarding increased CO2 emissions as a leading cause of obesity in one of the latest issues of Nutrition and Diabetes journal.Author Info: Hi! My name is Carla and I am a 5th year medical student at HYMS. I am interested in alternative medicine and I have done months researching the topic of herbal medicine. Besides, I like interviewing people and learning more about their experiences with one or another type of herbal treatments. I am willing to contribute to this site with my knowledge, and I would be happy to help you out to the best of my ability with any specific questions or problems related to alternative medicine.