NEWS

Follow the accumulating evidence and observations that shape our view of health policy and obesity

Higenamine: Banned from Sport but Sold in Supplements

September 14, 2018 — The World Anti-Doping Agency has banned a stimulant called higenamine. It’s present in the berries of a poisonous plant found everywhere in the south – nandina. Also, you’ll find it in many dietary supplements sold for weight loss and workouts. But a new study in Clinical Toxicology raises even more questions about this banned stimulant. Labeling […]

Are Trends in Obesity and Overweight Shifting?

September 13, 2018 — CDC and the National Center for Health Statistics have published new statistics on the prevalence of obesity and overweight. We already knew that obesity rates in 2016 were still rising. But with these additional statistics, we see signs of a subtle shift in trends. Less Progression to Overweight Since the 1980s, we’ve seen a rather […]

Now Can AHA Stop Hating Dairy Fat?

September 12, 2018 — The wheels of  nutritionism grind slow. Yet another study – this one published yesterday in Lancet – suggests we shouldn’t fear dairy fat so much. But the American Heart Association and other true believers in the dangers of saturated fat show no signs of budging. AHA persists in recommending only fat-free or low-fat dairy. Another Large Observational Study […]

The Response to Ridiculous Restaurant Food

September 11, 2018 — Ever increasing reliance on restaurant food is high on just about everyone’s list of suspects to blame for rising obesity. But what’s the right response? One answer, from CSPI, is to call out ridiculously unhealthy menu items. CSPI unveiled its latest lineup of absurd entrees last week. 2018 Xtreme Eating Awards Truly, the winners on […]

Bariatric Surgery: Information, Misinformation, and Inertia

September 10, 2018 — A striking pair of papers in JAMA Surgery offers powerful food for thought about bariatric surgery. The first is a systematic review of how safe and effective it is for Medicare patients. The second is a commentary from well-respected health policy researchers. After reading these papers, we see a huge huge gap. On one hand, we have […]

Beware of Shaming the Shamers

September 9, 2018 — Five years ago, fat shaming was no problem for the shamers. Fat shaming in just about any context was unremarkable. It hardly caused a ripple. But no longer. Cross the line into fat shaming territory and the internet will not be happy with you. Just ask the creators of Insatiable. It could have been a funny and […]

Nudges: A Thousand Tiny Band-Aids for a Thousand Tiny Cuts

September 8, 2018 — Using a small spoon might be a useful tool for preventing weight gain and obesity. That’s the claim you’ll find at the end of a new study in the British Journal of Nutrition. Like many other little nudges, smaller spoons seem to have have an impact on eating behaviors. But like the metaphor of a […]

National Obesity Care Week: 5 Reasons to Take Action

September 7, 2018 — We’re just one month away from National Obesity Care Week. It’s October 7-16 this year. But now is the time to make your plans and pledge to take action. Here’s why. 1. Weight Bias Is Blocking Progress Weight stigma starts early and hits hard. It has devastating effects on health and quality of life at […]

A Hard Look at Defining Fitness to Serve

September 6, 2018 — Fitness to serve might be a subjective matter for some jobs. But for serving in the military it’s critical to be absolutely objective. And right now, 71 percent of young adults are not fit to serve in the U.S. military. A key reason for that is high rates of obesity. It’s also a key reason […]

Why Is Respectful Care for Childhood Obesity Remarkable?

September 5, 2018 — A new viewpoint in JAMA Pediatrics yesterday reminds us that respectful care for childhood obesity is remarkable. Why? How can it be that good care for one of the most common health problems of childhood is unusual? Respectful Language Is a Start Fatima Cody Stanford and Ted Kyle point out that respectful language is an […]