Archive for January, 2013

Beyond Myths: Obesity Facts from NEJM

January 31, 2013 — Predictably, the media was full of busted obesity myths today from the New England Journal of Medicine, with plenty of attention to how many calories sexual activity burns. But the well-established obesity facts  from the same article were pretty much ignored. Judging from responses of obesity experts, like Yoni Freedhoff and The Obesity Society, a focus […]

Obesity Myths Busted in the New England Journal of Medicine

January 30, 2013 — A distinguished team of obesity experts led by David Allison at the University of Alabama at Birmingham has published a peer-reviewed challenge to some cherished conventional wisdom about obesity. This is conventional wisdom that they find lacks real evidence to support it. Calling out seven “obesity myths,” Allison said that “false and scientifically unsupported beliefs about […]

The Battleground Between Personal Choice and Regulations

January 30, 2013 — Americans love their freedom, and often say they want the choice to fail or succeed on their own without regulations getting in the way. In a thoughtful column, AP National Politics Editor Liz Sidoti reflects on the tension between personal choice and regulation, and how it applies to the obesity epidemic. The ultimate goal is […]

House Democrats Call for Changes in Wellness Program Regs

January 29, 2013 — Whether by coincidence or persuasion, the news is good that leading House Democrats are calling for some of the same changes to employer wellness regulations as leading obesity policy advocates sought in comments submitted last week. The Hill reports that the request came in a letter from top Democrats on all three House committees with […]

Obesity Experts Call for Fairness in Wellness

January 29, 2013 — A broad group of health and obesity policy advocates joined to call for wellness programs that actually promote health, rather than discriminate against people affected by obesity, when they jointly submitted comments last week on implementation of wellness provisions in the Affordable Care Act. The group included The Obesity Society, the Yale Rudd Center for […]

New Novels Consider Central Characters with Obesity

January 28, 2013 — Four new novels explore the viewpoint of central characters with severe obesity. Hannah Rosefield, in the Los Angeles Review of Books, suggests the books in this small but growing genre use their characters’ struggles with class III obesity to bring new understanding to a familiar theme in literature: the outsider. Butter by Erin Lange, Big […]

Why Do People with Obesity Have Higher Rates of Asthma?

January 27, 2013 — The association between obesity and asthma is not well understood. To understand potential reasons at a cellular level, researchers at the Columbia University Medical Center designed a study to explain the genetic and molecular relationships among obesity, airway diameter, and lung function. They found that leptin, a hormone that plays a key role in obesity […]

United States Health Lags Behind Peers

January 26, 2013 — The United States has the highest rates of obesity and infant mortality among its peers, as well as shorter lifespans, according to a recent report by the Institute of Medicine and the National Research Council. United States health is far from number one in this report. The people of 16 other wealthy countries are living […]

Changing Consumer Beverage Tastes

January 25, 2013 — As a debate rages about sugar sweetened beverages, consumer beverage tastes are changing in a seemingly healthier direction. Consumption of soda is down overall, with full sugar versions suffering the most. These trends may explain explain why the Coca-Cola Company wants a place at the table for health and obesity policy. Derek Thompson paints a […]

Coke Obesity Ads — Critics Have Critics

January 25, 2013 — Our preference poll, between the Coke obesity advertising campaign and a parody it inspired, brought a much greater diversity of views to the surface than news media has. Media coverage largely focused on critics who saw the campaign as a lame effort to distract from the harm done by sugary drinks like Coke. But in our […]