Skip to comments.Obesity 'Can Be Caught Like A Cold'
Posted on 01/30/2006 6:17:15 PM PST by blam
Obesity 'can be caught like a cold'
By Roger Highfield, Science Editor
Evidence that obesity could be contagious was published yesterday by American researchers - and washing your hands could be an elementary step to avoiding the virus and becoming overweight.
A team led by Dr Leah Whigham, of the University of Wisconsin, Madison, found that the human adenovirus Ad-37 causes obesity in chickens, marking the third virus to be linked to being overweight: two related viruses, Ad-36 and Ad-5, also cause obesity in animals.
Moreover, Ad-36 has been associated with human obesity, leading researchers to suspect that Ad-37 also may be implicated.
"We know Ad-36, and now Ad-37, cause obesity in animals," said Dr Whigham, whose findings are reported in the American Journal of Physiology.
"But we do not have cause-and-effect data in humans - you cannot ethically do the experiments for that kind of data: infect humans and see if they get fat."
The notion that viruses can cause obesity has been a contentious one among scientists, she admitted. And yet, there is evidence that factors other than poor diet or lack of exercise may be at work.
"With the exception of infectious diseases, no other chronic disease in history has spread so rapidly," Dr Whigham said.
"The nearly simultaneous increase in obesity in most countries is difficult to explain by changes in food intake and exercise alone, and suggest that adenoviruses could have contributed."
Stuffing the pie hole and not exercising has always caused obesity.
Um, you mean like catching a package of Twinkies that's tossed your way? Surely, over-eating (or eating the wrong stuff) must have something to do with it.
How can this be? I thought the rule was starve a cold and feed a fever? I guess no one is at fault for anything, unless you're a conservative or a Tobacco company.
must be ethiopians have the known cure
I am a very sick man.
Well it looks we have solved world famine. Just distribute the virus and people will plump up. Because of course being fat has nothing to do with how much food you eat.
When the source is Russia or the UK, it's usually trash science. They almost make the US media look credible.
I'm never shaking hands with an obese person again without immediately washing my hands and arms.
Stupidity is obviously contagious too.
I didn't "catch" it from anyone. I sit at a PC all day at work and at home.
Maybe I should suit FR and National Instruments.
What a joke.
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