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percent increased risk of obesity, and carriers of two copies had almost a 70 percent inc

rea▓sed risk. The gene variation is also found in other populations; the frequency in Chin▓ese is about half that of Europeans. Af▓ter confirming the obesity link in the larger Scottish group, the researchers examined 97 of the children. The

y t▓ook a number of measurements, including body fat and metabolic rate. The children were given three meals at school to evaluate their eating behavior. The mea

l included a mix of fruits and vegetables, ham, cheese, potato chips, chocolate candie

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坮ead rolls. The researchers found that children with the gene variation showed no difference in metabolic rates, levels of physical activity or the amount

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of food eaten. "The only thing we could fin▓d was the fact that they were eating much richer foods," ▓said Palmer. On average, those with the gene v

ariant ate 100 calories more than those without it. Dr. Rudolph Leibel, an obesity researcher at Columbia University in New York, said getting good measurements of how much someone eats is difficult, but the Scottish study

d▓id it in a closely controlled manner. He said the overeati▓ng may be driven more by the need for calories than a ▓preference for fatty foods. Fa

t is just a good way to get those extra calories. "Bite for bite, there are more calories in a Big Mac than there are in an apple," said Leibel, w

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