ALLERGY, RESPIRATORY
Herbal Remedy Could Halt Peanut Allergy
Overweight Moms More Likely to Have Asthmatic Kids
Obesity May Raise Kids' Allergy Risk
ALTERNATIVE MEDICINE
New Insights Show Ginseng Fights Inflammation
Higher Vitamin D Intake Could Cut Cancer Risk
Memory Loss Help from Brain Supplement Prevagen
ANIMAL CARE
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
Beware of Dog Bites
Separation Anxiety, Canine-Style
BONES & JOINTS
Chronic Low Back Pain Is on the Rise
Brazilian Mint Tea Naturally Good for Pain Relief
Many Americans Fall Short on Their Vitamin D
CANCER
Omega-3 May Safely Treat Precancerous Bowel Polyps
Lifting Weights Can Ease Arm Swelling in Breast Cancer Survivors
Study Suggests Link Between Cell Phones and Brain Tumors
CAREGIVING
Caring for Aging Loved Ones Can Be a Catch-22
Omega-3 Fatty Acid May Help 'Preemie' Girls' Brains
With Alzheimer's, Health-Care Costs Could Triple
CIRCULATORY SYSTEM
Laughter Can Boost Heart Health
Migraines in Pregnancy Boost Vascular Risks
A Brisk Pace May Keep Stroke at Bay
COSMETIC
Get Sugared!.... Its a sweet choice for hair removal
Science May Banish Bad Hair Days
With Psoriasis, the Internet May Offer Hope
DENTAL, ORAL
Most Insured Adults Worry About Health Care Costs: Poll
Rheumatoid Arthritis May Harm Gums
Good Oral Hygiene May Protect Against Heart Infections
DIABETES
Doctors Urged to Screen Diabetics for Sleep Apnea
Fructose-Sweetened Drinks Up Metabolic Syndrome Risk
Treatment for Type 2 Diabetes Updated
DIET, NUTRITION
Coffee Drinkers Might Live Longer
Is Coffee Good or Bad for Your Health?
Indian Spice May Thwart Liver Damage
DISABILITIES
Could Your Cell Phone Help Shield You From Alzheimer's?
Review Finds Marijuana May Help MS Patients
ENVIRONMENTAL HEALTH
Greener Neighborhoods Mean Slimmer Children
Hurricane Threats: Time to Batten Down the Hatches
Climate Change Linked to Longer Pollen Seasons
EYE CARE, VISION
Half of U.S. Adults Lack 20/20 Vision
Music Can Help Restore Stroke Patients' Sight
Green Tea May Ward Off Eye Disease
FITNESS
Any Exercise Good After a Heart Attack
Antioxidants Blunt Exercise Benefit, Study Shows
Exercise Guards White Blood Cells Against Aging
GASTROINTESTINAL PROBLEMS
Bowel Prep Harder on Women Than Men
HRT Use Raises Risk of Stomach Trouble
Gum Chewing May Speed Colon Surgery Recovery
GENERAL HEALTH
Swine Flu Is Now a Pandemic Says W.H.O.
The Yearly Flu Shot Debate
Dry Weather Boosts Odds of Flu Outbreaks
HEAD & NECK
Many Children Will Outgrow Headaches
Zen May Thicken Brain, Thwart Pain
Ski Helmets Encouraged for All
HEALTH & TECHNOLOGY
'Comfort Dogs' Come to Emotional Rescue
Imaging Sheds Light on How Acupuncture Works
Study Suggests Link Between Cell Phones and Brain Tumors
HEARING
Noise Hurts Men's Hearing More, Study Shows
Summer Sounds Can Lead to Hearing Loss
HEART & CARDIOVASCULAR
Laughter Can Boost Heart Health
Brown Rice Tied to Better Heart Health in Study
Obese People Seem to Do Better With Heart Disease
INFECTIOUS DISEASE
Swine Flu Closes Three Schools in NYC
Swine Flu Loves a Crowd
Poor Restroom Cleaning Causes Cruise-Ship Sickness
INFERTILITY
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
KID'S HEALTH
Boosting Kids' Stroke IQ May Save Lives
Stomach Germ May Protect Against Asthma
Should Your Child Be Seeing a Chiropractor?
MEN'S HEALTH
Eating Fast Until Full Triples Overweight Risk
Varicose Veins May Mask Larger Problem
More Vitamin C May Mean Less Chance of Gout
MENTAL HEALTH
Worries About Weight Are Tied to Teen Suicide Tries
Eight Spiritual Universal Principles in the Art of Practice
Music Soothes Anxiety as Well as Massage Does
PAIN
Tai Chi May Help Ease Fibromyalgia
'Cell Phone Elbow' -- A New Ill for the Wired Age
Acupuncture, Real or Fake, Eases Back Pain
PHYSICAL THERAPY
PREGNANCY
Prenatal Stress May Boost Baby's Asthma Risk
Acupuncture May Ease Depression During Pregnancy
Obesity May Affect Fertility in Young Womene
SENIORS
Fitness Fades Fast After 45
Seniors Cope With Sleep Loss Better Than Young Adults
15-Point Test Gauges Alzheimer's Risk
SEXUAL HEALTH
SLEEP DISORDERS
Daylight Savings: Not a Bright Time for All
Moderate Aerobics May Ease Insomnia Symptoms
6 to 8 Hours of Shut-Eye Is Optimal for Health
WOMEN'S HEALTH
Exercise During Pregnancy Keeps Newborn Size Normal
How Much Fish to Eat While Pregnant?
Iodine in Prenatal Vitamins Varies Widely
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Successful Weight Loss Shows Unique Brain Patterns

(HealthDay News) -- New research suggests that people who have successfully lost weight will activate certain parts of their brains when confronted with images of food.

While preliminary, the findings indicate that those who shed pounds -- and keep them off -- tap into regions of the brain related to control over urges.

"It may be that they actually recruit new brain regions to help with their weight loss," said study author Jeanne McCaffery, an assistant professor of psychiatry and human behavior at Brown Medical School, in Providence, R.I.

McCaffery and her colleagues wanted to understand how people react to "food cues" -- in this case, photos of food. "People make decisions about whether or not they're going to eat food, and that decision-making usually comes when they first smell or see the food," she said.

The researchers recruited several groups of participants: 18 people of normal weight, 16 fat people and 17 people who had successfully shed weight -- at least 30 pounds from their maximum weight -- and kept it off for at least three years.

The participants underwent brain scans as they looked at pictures of high-calorie and low-calorie foods. The MRI scans revealed that those who had successfully lost weight showed more activity in the parts of the brain that are associated with inhibition and in dealing with complex tasks, McCaffery said.

Those of normal weight didn't show this pattern. This may be because "they've been of normal weight all of their lifetime. The successful weight losers have to put in more effort to avoid eating foods or to control their response to food."

The findings appear in the October issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.

Ian McDonald, a professor of metabolic physiology who wrote a commentary accompanying the study, said questions remain.

For one, did the people who lost weight begin to have this brain response when they started shedding pounds or later? "Similarly, are the obese different from the non-obese because of an intrinsic difference or as a result of the inappropriate eating which has led to their obesity?" asked McDonald, a researcher at the University of Nottingham Medical School in England.

In other words, does inappropriate eating by heavy people lead to differences in the way their brains work when they look at food?

Also, McDonald said, future research needs to figure out what the differences in brain activity mean for the choices people make. "Similar measurements need to be made before, during and after weight loss," he noted.

For now, McCaffery said the researchers would like to understand better how the brain works in people who have lost weight successfully.

In the future, she said, it's possible that "we'll be able to teach other people how to do that."

SOURCES: Jeanne McCaffery, Ph.D., assistant professor, psychiatry and human behavior, Weight Control and Diabetes Research Center, Brown Medical School and The Miriam Hospital, Providence, R.I.; Ian McDonald, researcher, School of Biomedical Sciences, University of Nottingham Medical School, Queen's Medical Centre, Nottingham, United Kingdom; October 2009, American Journal of Clinical Nutrition.