Archive for the ‘Health Policy’ Category

Don’t Panic, Obesity Is No Longer an Epidemic

February 2, 2018 — Well, actually now it’s officially a pandemic. Nevertheless, it’s pretty clear that the language of obesity panic is totally unhelpful. Unfortunately, what it does accomplish is the promotion of bias and discrimination. The Language of Moral Panic More than a decade ago, Paul Campos published a commentary that described the response to obesity as a […]

Will the Sugar Tax Fad Have an Effect on Obesity?

January 31, 2018 — Resistance to public health policies is the reason that obesity is growing relentlessly. Especially resistance to a sugar tax. That deadpan comment from a health and obesity expert is impressive, opinionated speculation. It came at a recent roundtable of experts to explore strategies for reducing obesity. And the pitch is working. All over the world, […]

Obesity, Health, and Respect for Human Diversity

January 29, 2018 — Respect for human diversity is a slippery goal. You might assume that public health policies advance that goal. But a new analysis from Ximena Ramos Salas and colleagues suggests that the opposite is true. Policies aimed at obesity can contribute to bias against people living with it. Five Pervasive Themes Ramos Salas found five problem […]

Panera Wants FDA to Crack Down on Eggs

January 28, 2018 — Panera want you to know that they will sell you a better egg sandwich than anyone else. This is a natural extension of their smug advertising that tells us they sell “food as it should be.” So now, they’d like a little help from FDA. They want the agency to crack down on fast food […]

A Tax Policy for Drinking Less Sugar and More Alcohol?

January 25, 2018 — Will taxing sodas bring us more alcohol consumption? That’s the heretical question raised by a new study in the Journal of Epidemiology and Community Health. The answer they found is a bit complicated. But it’s clear that less soda can mean more beer. Many Choices for Food and Beverages Food and beverage taxes as a […]

Educating Consumers About Healthy Portions

January 24, 2018 — Can we educate consumers about healthy portions? Even if we do, will this have an impact on obesity? This and a host of other questions swirled through an intense day of discussions at Georgetown University Monday. The Georgetown Social Enterprise Initiative convened this closed-panel discussion. Portion Sizes Growing with Obesity While the prevalence of obesity […]

A Stupid Weight Loss Contest at Work: It’s Not Wellness

January 23, 2018 — NBC canceled The Biggest Loser for good reasons, but Schlumberger doesn’t seem to care. Yesterday, this oil industry employer kicked off a $10,000 workplace weight loss contest. They might be telling themselves they’re promoting employee wellness. But they would be wrong. At Best Counterproductive, Dangerous for Some The Biggest Loser was a controversial spectacle from the very […]

Still Getting Ready to Rethink Obesity

January 20, 2018 — The big JAMA obesity issue came out this week with a promising theme: “Reimagining Obesity in 2018.” It was full of good new data on bariatric surgery. But it was a little short on imagination. At JAMA, judging by the content of this special issue, they’re still not quite ready to rethink obesity. Count Calories, […]

Let’s Tax Junk Food All Across America

January 19, 2018 — Call it “a modest proposal” if you like. But the authors probably don’t intend this to be satire. Writing in the American Journal of Public Health, Jennifer Pomeranz and colleagues tell us that we can tax junk food all across America anytime we want to. They offer a wry conclusion. “Political feasibility in the current political […]

How to Promote Self-Deception About Health and Obesity

January 18, 2018 — Perhaps you noticed. This week, everyone is interested in the president’s BMI. Following a press briefing, Twitter became obsessed with the subject. But the only good we can find in this fuss is an object lesson on how stigma promotes self-deception about health and obesity. White House doctor Ronny Jackson told the press that our […]