There has been an alarming rise in the number of obese people in the last few decades and the epidemic is turning into an unprecedented challenge for healthcare systems around the world.
However, apart from looking for ways to reduce weight or burn excessive fat, researchers have also been looking at the factors that contribute to obesity and the measures to prevent it.
A debate on who gets fat and who does not has been reported by two experts in the British Medical Journal.
According to Timothy Frayling, Professor of Human Genetics at the University of Exeter, genetic factors are the main contributors to obesity in today’s environment.
He says that previous studies conducted on twins and adopted children have suggested a strong influence of genetic component in the varying BMI, with an estimated 70% effect. Also, there are other studies that suggest that those carrying 2 copies of the obesity gene (the FTO gene) are heavier on average when compared to those carrying 2 copies of the protective version.