Archive for January, 2014

Worst Headline: “I Give Up, Pass the Pie”

January 31, 2014 — “I Give Up, Pass the Pie” is the brilliant headline making the rounds in the world of obesity factoid journalism. Well, maybe it’s not so brilliant. But it’s the message that Pacific Standard writer Tom Jacobs took away from a new analysis of three experiments published in Psychological Science.  The studies involved no pie — […]

Much of Childhood Obesity Starts before Kindergarten

January 30, 2014 — New research published today in the New England Journal of Medicine finds that much of childhood obesity starts before kindergarten. In a cohort of 7,738 children from the kindergarten class of 1998-99, half of those who developed obesity by age 14 had been overweight at age 5, and 75% had weights that were above the […]

A Stupid Obesity Blame Game

January 29, 2014 — Recent research published in Appetite shines a light on a stupid obesity blame game. And people with obesity are losing. Jayson Lusk and Brenna Ellison measured the public perception of responsibility for the rise in obesity in a representative national sample of 800 adults. Individuals were assigned most of the blame, followed by parents and […]

Disappointing APHA Obesity Story

January 28, 2014 — With much fanfare, the American Public Health Association (APHA) released a graphic obesity story last week that claimed public health professionals are conquering obesity by promoting lots of good stuff like eating more veggies and breastfeeding. All we need to do is make sure that the bad guys in Congress don’t cut the budget for […]

Three Ways Being Active Affects Your Brain

January 27, 2014 — A growing body of research shows that being inactive as well as being active affects your brain in profound ways. Here are three effects worth noting. Promoting Cognitive Function in Youth. In children and adolescents, physical activity appears to promote better thinking abilities and better performance in school. A new study in Psychoneuroendocrinology adds to […]

Five New Health Technologies You Wear

January 26, 2014 — New health technologies you wear are proliferating at a rate that makes rabbits seem celibate by comparison. Wearable health tech created an enormous buzz at the gigantic International CES this month. It’s quite a feat to through the clutter of that meeting of well over 100,000 techies. Here are five technologies that will have a […]

Is Your Furnace Making You Fat?

January 25, 2014 — Popular media went into overdrive this week with stories about your furnace making you fat. Before you turn the heat down too far, stop, take a deep breath, and think about what the research really tells us. The stimulus for reports of the new thermostat diet was a review article published for early view online […]

Contrave: The Problem of Scale in Obesity Treatment

January 24, 2014 — At the JPMorgan Healthcare Conference, Orexigen presented a good overview of the problem of scale in obesity treatment — the scale of the disease and the scale of the challenge to overcome inertia in treating it. Oh, and they provided helpful perspective on how they plan, with their partners at Takeda, to overcome that inertia. […]

Cookie Cutter Obesity Solutions from Smoking

January 23, 2014 — Obesity solutions that borrow on strategies from smoking control are surfacing again. The National Obesity Forum in the U.K. advocates for doing just this in their recently published “State of the Nation’s Waistline” report. They say that current efforts to promote healthy lifestyles “cannot be expected to alter the public situation on their own, despite […]

Ad Hominem ad Nauseum

January 22, 2014 — Argumentum ad hominem is a logical fallacy that has no place in science, but unfortunately is all too common in health, nutrition, and obesity policymaking. The most recent example comes from sensational UK media reports critical of an eminent nutrition scientist — Ian Macdonald — for advising both food companies that sell sugary products and […]