February 2010

The Obesity Society Newsletter
February 2010
TOS Names Covidien Research Grant Recipients
TOS Members Lead Research on Bariatric Surgery
Massachusetts Public Hearing on Weight Bias
DC Healthy Schools Act 2009
New Media Guidelines
Playnormous Combats Childhood Obesity
This Month in Obesity
END NOTE ... From the EVP


Obesity 2010


February 8-12, 2010::
Clinical Nutrition Week 2010
Las Vegas, NV
Full Details 
February 12-17, 2010::
Keystone Symposia: Advances in Molecular Mechanisms of Atherosclerosis
Banff, Alberta
Full Details 
February 12-17, 2010::
The Macrophage: Intersection of Pathogenic and Protective Inflammation
Banff, Alberta
Full Details
February 23-24, 2010::
4th Annual European Nutrition & Lifestyle Conference: Enabling Healthy Choices - Where Does the Regulatory Balance Lie?
Brussels, Belgium
Full Details
February 24-26, 2010::
American Heart Association's International Stroke Conference and The State-of-the-Art Nurses Symposium
San Antonio, Texas
Full Details


Cincinnati Childrens Hospital- Adolescent Bariatric
Designed for pediatric surgeons, pediatricians, psychologists and other allied health workers, this two-day national conference on Adolescent Bariatric Program Development, hosted by Cincinnati Children's Hospital Medical Center, will focus broadly on the preoperative multidisciplinary assessment, preoperative weight management, operative procedures appropriate for teenagers and postoperative management of the issues unique to youth. To register, or for more information, call 513-636-7574 or visit:


Obesity Supplement Cover
Community-Based Approaches to Childhood Obesity: Research Progress and Future Directions
Published with the February 2010 issue of Obesity, this much-anticipated Supplement focuses on the childhood obesity epidemic, covering research on a wide range of community-based weight-loss programs. To encourage the search for an effective solution to this problem, this issue documents the results of recent intervention programs and discusses the future of the field. The featured studies include ones that primarily influence family interactions, food store policies, and television habits, as well as one that uses biosimulation to design and model potential new studies. 
  fact or Fiction?

ICO 2010

CON Student Meeting 

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Donna Ryan, MDDear TOS Members and Supporters,
Things continue to move along at a rapid pace with completion of the Annual Program Committee Planning Meeting, approval of a new budget for Fiscal Year 2011, and new bylaw amendments being sent to TOS Fellows for a vote.

Symposia submissions were accepted up to the final hours prior to the Annual Program Committee meeting that took place January 16-17 in Baltimore.  Approximately 25 members came together representing all constituencies of our membership.  Submissions were reviewed and from the ideas, symposia titles and speakers have been selected for all five tracks.  The Abstract Submissions website will be open from mid-February until April 1st and then the Committee will make abstract and poster determinations.
The Finance Committee presented the FY2011 budget to Council last week.  I'm pleased to report that after two financially very difficult years for TOS, we have a balanced budget for 2011 that I'm confident is sound and very manageable.  We involved several staff members in finding expense savings and setting realistic revenue projections.  And, any additional revenue after expenses at year-end has been earmarked to begin rebuilding the reserves. 
Finally, four new bylaw amendments have been presented to Council and approved to go to TOS Fellows for a vote.  The official ballot will be sent out in early February and we hope to report the results in the March newsletter.  The issues at hand are: 1) eligibility for regular members to participate in governance; 2) membership residency requirements for Fellow status; 3) the Early Career name change and; 4) section elections.  Please watch your inboxes carefully for the official ballot - your vote is important.
Donna Ryan Signature
Donna H. Ryan, MD
President, The Obesity Society
The Obesity Society Announces Selection of Covidien Research Grant Recipients
Named Research Grants in Two Focus Areas: Childhood Obesity - Prevention and/or Treatment and Weight Gain After Bariatric Surgery



Covidien and The Obesity Society have partnered to award two named research grants in two focus areas: Childhood Obesity - Prevention and/or Treatment and Weight Gain After Bariatric Surgery.  Covidien sponsored the full award of $50,000 for each grant for a total of $100,000. 


We received 51 letters of intent for Childhood Obesity and 37 letters of intent for Weight Gain after Bariatric Surgery.  The Obesity Society's Scientific Review Committee, chaired by Robert Kushner, MD, selected the following recipients:


Childhood Obesity - Prevention and/or TreatmentMarie Pierre St. Onge

 Marie-Pierre St-Onge, PhD
St. Luke's-Roosevelt Hospital Center

New York, NY

Title: Impact of breakfast, as part of weight-loss intervention, on body-mass index in obese, elementary school children

Co-Investigator: Kathleen Keller, PhD

Weight Gain After Bariatric SurgeryRachel Goldman

Rachel Goldman, MA 

Medical University of South Carolina

Charleston, SC

Title: Identifying cortical, subcortical and functional neural networks associated with weight gain following gastric-bypass surgery

 Co-Investigators: Jeffrey J. Borckardt, PhD; Alok Madan, PhD, MPH; Laura Campbell, PhD; Amanda Buddak, RN; Karl T. Byrne, MD; and Patrick O'Neil, PhD

Congratulations to both recipients for this very significant achievement!
Obesity Society Members Lead Study on Bariatric Surgery for Individuals With Lower BMIs 
Study Funded by NIH/NIDDK as Part of the Challenge Grant/ Economic Stimulus Package

Drs. Tom Wadden and David Sarwer, Obesity Society members, are Co-Principal Investigators on a multi-disciplinary team of Penn researchers, that are conducting a study funded by the National Institutes of Health (NIH) to determine if bariatric surgery, either gastric bypass or adjustable gastric banding surgery, is more effective than lifestyle modification to reduce weight and ultimately treat type 2 diabetes.

The study is investigating whether people with a lower body-mass index (BMI) - a BMI of 30 or greater, compared to the current NIH recommended 35 or greater BMI - may benefit from surgery to treat type 2 diabetes, high blood pressure or other significant health problems.

Additional data from randomized controlled trials, such as this study, are needed to help better understand who are the most-appropriate candidates for weight-loss surgery.

To learn more, visit: http://www.uphs.upenn.edu/news/News_Releases/2009/12/diabetes-weight-loss-study/

Proposed Legislation to Prohibit Weight Bias Discrimination 


Massachusetts held a public hearing on potential legislation to prohibit weight discrimination: H.1850/ An Act Making it Unlawful to Discriminate on the Basis of Height and Weight, before the Joint Committee on Labor and Workforce Development on Wednesday, January 27, 2010.

Obesity Society Weight Bias Task Force Chair and Council Member, Rebecca Puhl, testified at the hearing. For more information, please contact Traci Choi at the MA State House:

Tracy Choi
Legislative Aide
Representative Byron Rushing
Second Division Chair
State House Room 121
Boston, MA 02133
P: 617.722.2006
This e-mail address is being protected from spambots. You need JavaScript enabled to view it



DC Healthy Schools Act of 2009

In December of 2009, Council member Mary M. Cheh introduced the Healthy Schools Act of 2009 in the DC Council, the legislative body for the District of Columbia. 

The Act is being proposed in an effort to improve the nutrition, health, and wellness of public school students in DC. Teaching students to live a healthy lifestyle and making school environments healthier can have a major, lifelong impact on the well-being of our youngest generation.


This legislation is designed to complement the existing educational reforms enacted by the Mayor and the Council. Twenty community organizations, including the American Heart Association, DC Farm-to School Network, and DC Hunger Solutions, have provided invaluable assistance in drafting the legislation.


Among other things, the legislation seeks to address the childhood obesity epidemic by (1) raising the nutritional standards in school meals by implementing the Institute of Medicine's recommendations, (2) requiring 150 minutes of physical activity per week and 225 minutes of physical education per week in elementary and middle schools, and (3) establishing a farm-to-school program.


To learn more visit: http://dcfarmtoschool.org/healthy-schools-act/

Guidelines for the Portrayal of Obese Persons in the Media   

In today's world the media is an influential source of information about obesity. The way that obesity and weight loss is portrayed, described, and framed by the media profoundly shapes the public's understanding and attitudes toward these important health issues.


The Obesity Society Weight Bias Task Force created these guidelines with the goal to ensure that all persons, regardless of their body weight, are represented equitably and accurately in journalistic reporting.

These guidelines are broad and apply to a range of media, including, but not limited to, both print and broadcast journalism, entertainment television and film, internet media, and advertising.

Playnormous Fights Childhood Obesity With Children's Museum of Houston
Playnormous, an award-winning producer of health research-based video games and media for children, has teamed up with the Children's Museum of Houston, to incorporate information on health in a fun and creative way to the museum's PowerPlay Exhibit.
"We hope putting Playnormous games inside the Children's Museum of Houston will expose even more kids and parents to the idea that games can improve health," explains Director of Marketing Melanie Lazarus, MPH. "Our ultimate goal is prevention of childhood obesity and type 2 diabetes using media kids love to play."

The museum's highly acclaimed PowerPlay Exhibit is a three-story adventure that challenges kids to climb walls, race, play dance games and track their heart rate. Kids can learn the science behind health in the PowerScience Lab by talking to Baylor College of Medicine graduate students and playing one of five Playnormous games which teach about fruit and vegetables, portion size, food groups and aerobic activity.

Playnormous video games are also freely available to children, parents and teachers at www.Playnormous.com

  Here is a round-up of press articles that refer to The Obesity Society and its members or to topics relating to obesity in general. Please note that all external links are provided as a courtesy and are not endorsed by The Obesity Society.
 TOS and TOS Members in the News 
Obesity in the News

Phys Ed: How Exercising Keeps Your Cells Young

Obesity Journal January 2010THIS MONTH IN OBESITY

Featured Articles in Obesity This Month Include:

Francesca Dea END NOTE ... FROM THE EVP

Retrench and Refocus 




"In many associations, ... [there is a] need to reduce expenses

in the 10 to 20 percent range now.  In a down economy, more organizations are taking money from their reserves to cover expenses." 

 -John H. Graham, IV, President and CEO of the American Society for Association Executives



Dear TOS Members and Supporters,


Unfortunately, TOS has trended right along with Mr. Graham's observations of the association/professional society community.  For two years, TOS has suffered the effects of a dropping market, unemployment and membership challenges.  Fortunately, previous TOS leaders had the foresight to fund a Reserve for just such unexpected situations. 


It is now time to retrench and refocus.  The Finance Committee and Council have taken a conservative approach to expense budgeting and a slightly aggressive approach to revenue projections based on positive trends, beginning economic recovery and staff consistency.  This resulted in $51,500 net revenue after expenses for FY11.  Furthermore, as Dr. Ryan mentioned, any unbudgeted revenue has been earmarked to begin rebuilding the Reserve Fund, which was reduced last year due to stock market losses and our need to balance the budget.  In taking this conservative approach, Council has committed to developing and showcasing membership value and the benefits of attending TOS' Annual Conference.  Furthermore, TOS' new design firm will build improved "brand" recognition and communication and the membership survey will help us evaluate your attitudes effectively.  In essence, we are committed to ensuring that we are wise arbiters of your organization and becoming an organization in which you have an ever-increasing pride in your membership (or desire to become a member).


 Dea Signature
Francesca Dea, CAE
Executive Vice President, The Obesity Society
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(Please note: External Links are provided as a courtesy. The Obesity Society is not responsible for the content on sites accessed through external links.)

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