In the perpetual search for anything other than the stark "I am fat because I eat too much" scientists now say they have identified what the FTO 'obesity gene' found in 2007 does.

This latest finding from the Medical Research Council in Harwell Oxford, comes hard on the heels of claims that obesity is caused by a virus.

But now researchers are saying that this a gene that causes people to eat too much. Those who suffer fom having an over active FTO gene have as a result an increased appetite. They do not know when they are really full up.

This could enable the pharmaceutical industry (as ever) to come up with a range of pills to switch this gene off (and make obscene profits).

Obesity in the western world is a fast growing (sorry) problem that will blight the health of many in this more sedentary age. It can lead to diabetes and cancer as well as heart problems. One in four Britons are now classed as obese and this threatens to increase to one in three in the next 20-30 years.

The fear is that many parents today will outlive their offspring.

The race is now on to find out exactly how the gene makes people feel they must eat more.

Well it seems the universe is putting so many obstacles in our path toward a normal healthy weight (actually 'weight' is not the problem as muscle is denser so 'weighs' more than fat) that it cannot possibly be the individual's fault can it?

Well if obesity is really genetically derived then you would think that natural selection would have bred it out by now wouldn't you? Or is it a contagious gene? How can normal sized parents pass it on? Unless it is due to some modern factor like …. todays' diet of processed muck that is passed off as food!

This is just going to be used by pill makers to foist more product on daytime TV to the deluded people who will lap up the well marketed tripe.

There are even more worrying ramifications. Can you imagine all those over-weight people now giving up any form of exercise and gorging themselves even more as they swallow the pill cure hook line and sinker? Do you think youngsters' health will really benefit?

We must put these magic cures behind us and acknowledge that more calories in than out equals fat gain. The surest way to combat this is a healthy balanced diet, a regular exercise regime and honesty to oneself. When will people recognise that this is largely a lifestyle problem?

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