How Our Food Environment Drives Weight Gain

This is our first episode on weight gain and weight loss. In this episode, we describe how, as an industrialized nation, our food supply and environment have changed in a way that, in many cases, is mismatched with our biology as humans. We explore how these changes can lead to disease and metabolic dysfunction. We discuss how the replacement of whole foods with processed foods, as well as the addition of caloric sweeteners to most of the food items within grocery stores across the nation has preceded a rapid rise in obesity and metabolic dysfunction. In this episode, we begin to discuss some of the pathophysiology related to the consumption of ultra-processed and hyper-palatable foods as well as concerns surrounding the consumption of fructose- and glucose- containing sugary drinks. We also discussed the timelines of weight gain and loss as they typically occur over the lifespan and vary according to season. This episode sets the stage for the next episodes, which will focus on the normal fat metabolism and how it may become dysregulated in metabolic dysfunction.


00:00 – Introduction
01:21 – Metabolic health as a continuum
03:57 – Obesity as an epidemic
05:12 – Heritability and genetics of obesity
06:45 – Where obesity starts in the body
07:26 – History of weight gain in the U.S.
11:32 – High fructose corn syrup vs. table sugar
13:40 – Glycemic index and load
14:45 – What happens to your liver with sugary drinks
16:24 – Sugary drinks may be associated with cancerous changes
17:35 – The calories from sugary drinks are not automatically offset
20:24 – Obesity as a disease
23:10 – Obesity and kids
24:24 – How obesity develops across the lifespan
26:55 – The impacts of weight loss attempts
30:12 – Summary and upcoming content


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