The Prevalence Of Overweight And Obesity

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Abstract: The prevalence of overweight and obesity in America has increased and with it so has the effort find ways to lose weight and maintain a healthy weight. Different diets with varying macronutrient contents are being investigated as to find out which are most effective for weight maintenance. This study sought out to demonstrate that the addition of plant-derived saturated fats high in medium chain fatty acids can aid in weight management in mammals. Twenty-four mice were fed isocaloric diets of differing fat content for thirty weeks, one with a standard feed representative of the American diet, one with a diet containing fat predominantly from coconut oil, and one with a diet containing fat predominantly from palm oil. This study…show more content…
The increase in obesity has also increased the incidence of complications such as metabolic syndrome, diabetes, and some cancers. The uprising of these complications has created questions regarding the macronutrient content of a diet needed to manage a healthy weight. While adding fats may be beneficial, not all dietary fats are created equally. Fat in the diet comes from both animal and plant sources, while plant sources tend to be unsaturated fats, there are a few exceptions (2). For example, coconut oil and palm oil are plant sources of saturated fats. This study aims to examine the effects of coconut oil and palm oil on body weight regulation in animals. Consumption of a high amount of saturated fats have been linked to an increase in low-density lipoprotein (LDL) cholesterol and an increased risk of heart disease (3). One of the most common sources of dietary saturated fat in the American diet comes in the form of palmitic acid. Palmitic acid is a saturated long chain fatty acid. Long chain fatty acids become triglycerides in the body and are likely to be stored as fat. Bile is necessary to metabolize long chain fatty acids for energy (4). Coconut and palm oils, while saturated fats, are rich in medium chain fatty acids (MCFAs) which may be useful in maintaining weight and insulin sensitivity (5). Medium Chain Triglycerides (MCTs), such as those present in coconut oil and palm oil are
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