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Fat of the Land

Scott LaFee on

Obesity is an expanding national health crisis. Nineteen states and two territories have at least 35% of residents with adult obesity, more than doubling the number of states since 2018, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention.

Obesity is most prevalent in the Midwest states, top to bottom, with the highest occurrence (45%-50%) in Kentucky and West Virginia. No state has less than 20% of adults with obesity.

Washington, D.C., had the lowest prevalence (20%-25%), followed by California, Colorado, Washington, New York, Vermont, Massachusetts, New Jersey and Hawaii (25%-30%).

Florida had insufficient data.

Bariatric Surgery and Epilepsy

If you're thinking bariatric surgery may be a good option (see above), think twice. A retrospective Canadian study found that surgically modifying the stomach or intestines to induce weight loss increased the risk of developing epilepsy by 45% compared with people who did not have bariatric surgery.

 

The findings echoed earlier research in Sweden, but the neurological mechanism connecting the procedure to the brain disorder, which is characterized by recurring seizures, remains unknown.

Body of Knowledge

From puberty on, males normally produce sperm throughout life. A lot of sperm cells, in fact -- roughly 1 billion per month and 525 billion over a lifetime. During fetal development, females create approximately 6 million eggs, and at birth, retain roughly 1 million. At puberty, only 300,000 remain, and of those, only 300 to 400 will be ovulated during a woman's reproductive lifetime.

Keeping immature eggs alive and viable is paramount. In new research, scientists have discovered that the eggs, known as oocytes, restructure their metabolism so they essentially operate in low-power mode for decades until needed.

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