Is A Contagious Virus What's Causing The Obesity Epidemic?

Prevention Magazine - Out-of-the-box thinking often appears nuts at first. (People scoffed at the Wright brothers.) Then the world catches up, and we embrace the concept we thought was ridiculous. That's the path "infectobesity"—the idea that some portion of the obesity crisis may be the due to a viral infection—is traveling, with Texas Tech University professor Nikhil Dhurandhar leading the charge.

The father of infectobesity is Nikhil Dhurandhar, PhD, chair of nutritional sciences at Texas Tech University in Lubbock. He stumbled on the idea when he was in grad school in India: A veterinarian friend happened to mention that an outbreak among chickens was causing the birds to get curiously fat. Dhurandhar later came to learn that the infected chickens had been hit with a common bug known as an adenovirus, strains of which are found in horses, dogs, monkeys, and humans. Now, 25 years later, his theory has been borne out by research.

Read the rest of Prevention's profile on Dhurandhar's research.