Science has yet to figure out the exact connection between sleep and weight, but data indicate a relationship does exist. Researchers are looking at whether lack of sleep influences hormones, including leptin and grhelin, which help control hunger.
The quest to get into shape begins with a healthy diet and the first things to cut back on are fat and junk food, experts say. Once the diet is on track, the next step is figuring out an exercise program, which might include anything from walking to gym workouts to martial arts.
Registered dietitian Stephanie Correnti brings her 27 years of experience in advising clients and companies on how to eat healthy on a budget to California senior citizens. Her cooking classes focus on diets that are healthy, tasty and affordable, with ingredients that are low in cholesterol, sodium and sugar.
A review of studies that included almost 2.3 million people found that being overweight increases the risk of ischemic stroke by 22%, while being obese increases the risk 64%. Researchers said being overweight and obese independently affected stroke risk, possibly because fat cells can secrete substances that contribute to inflammation, artery hardening or blood clotting.
Eight community health centers in Massachusetts are taking a nontraditional approach to helping children lose weight, with a team approach to care located at one site. The program offers children a physician to deal with health problems, a dietitian to help with nutrition and exercise, and a case manager who resolves problems such as access to fresh food and getting the right shoes.