With NHS funding for IVF diminishing, Imperial researchers are looking at weights loss as a way to support men who have obesity-related reproductive dysfunction.
Infertility is the inability to have children after 12 months of regular unprotected intercourse and is fairly common, affecting 1 in 7 couples. Male factor infertility refers to infertility secondary to poor sperm quality, and while it is talked about less than female infertility, it is responsible for 40% of infertile cases. Obesity is a rising global epidemic, so it is no surprise that a quarter of men attending fertility centres are obese.
During the last few decades, tremendous advances have taken place in the treatment of women diagnosed with infertility. However, little progress is made for couples with male factor infertility. Therefore, the only therapy offered to couples is assisted reproduction, such as in-vitro fertilisation (IVF) therapy. IVF is effective but with NHS funding diminishing it can be expensive, as well as having potentially life-threatening complications for the female partner such as ovarian hyper-stimulation syndrome. That’s why we need to look at other options for couples affected by infertility. (more…)
To mark National Obesity Awareness Week, Professor Tricia Tan explains how new research is harnessing the power of hormones to treat obesity more effectively.
Obesity has been an issue for centuries. However, it has transformed from a disease that once only touched a small number of people to a major health concern that currently affects one in four adults in the UK. As a result, obesity is now always in the news. Although many obese people are reasonably healthy, we know that obesity increases the risks of developing heart disease, diabetes mellitus (high blood sugar), cancer, respiratory problems (such as sleep apnoea and asthma) and arthritis. Obesity and its related health problems threaten to reverse the gains in lifespan that we have seen through the 20th century. So, how can we begin to tackle it? (more…)
In this post, Dr Tony Goldstone looks at the role of gut hormones in controlling alcohol addiction and how they may provide a basis for future treatment.
After the excesses of Christmas and New Year, it has become fashionable for January to be promoted as a time for reassessment and resolutions. There are promises and attempts at living a healthier lifestyle, including stopping drinking alcohol (‘Dry January’), joining that gym, stopping smoking, and eating better. However, we know how difficult it is to maintain behaviour change over the longer term. People start drinking excessively again, put back on the weight they lose, start smoking again, and their attendance at the gym wanes. For people who have hazardous levels of drinking, and those who are dependent on alcohol, this is particularly problematic. (more…)
In this festive post, Dr Anjali Amin looks at how to keep our gut microbiome happy over this period of indulgence.
As the festive season approaches, one wonders how our bodies prepare for the enormity of food that will be ingested in a relatively short space of time. In the UK alone, the average person consumes 7000 calories on Christmas Day alone. This is three times the recommended calorie intake per day, and most of us will have reached the recommended calorie intake before Christmas lunch has even been served. And of course, it’s not just about eating more. We are also a great deal more sedentary, with the average person in the UK spending 5.5 hours a day in front of the television over the Christmas period desperately awaiting reruns of Blackadder and yet another Christmas special! (more…)