Archive for April, 2014

Comfort Food Genes

April 30, 2014 — The drive to seek out comfort food that is highly reinforcing appears to interact with the FTO gene — a gene that is increasingly well understood to influence a person’s risk of obesity. The interaction of these two factors can play an important role in how many calories and nutrients a person will consume. That’s the […]

Finding What Works for Obesity

April 29, 2014 — Finding what works for someone who is dealing with obesity is perhaps the key challenge for successful treatment. Obesity comes in many forms and what works for one person will likely not work for the next person. So finding the right approach for a particular person can be tedious. It can lead people to give up […]

Brain Inflammation: Cause or Effect of Obesity?

April 28, 2014 — Content updated and moved here.  Neuropeptide Receptors in Thalamic Brain Tissue, photograph © Wellcome Images / flickr Subscribe by email to follow the accumulating evidence and observations that shape our view of health, obesity, and policy.

Medicine: “A Moral Hazard”

April 28, 2014 — A new study and a commentary in JAMA Internal Medicine propose that effective medicines can be a “moral hazard.” Takehiro Sugiyama and colleagues analyzed data from the National Health Health and Nutrition Examination Survey (NHANES) and found an association between using cholesterol-lowering statin drugs and the consumption of fat and calories. They found that people […]

The Intersection of Emotion and Health Policy

April 27, 2014 — At the intersection of emotion and health policy, evidence-based decision making often gets creamed. We see it all the time in the realm of obesity and nutrition. Emotions run high when the subject is sugar, salt, and fat in the food supply, or big food, or fast food — just to name a few subjects […]

Obesity Under Control? Not Exactly

April 26, 2014 — Obesity under control? Such claims are premature, said ConscienHealth founder Ted Kyle Friday in a presentation to the Connecticut Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics. A steady stream of headlines claiming that initiatives against childhood obesity are working or that the total rate of obesity is leveling off, leaves the public with a false impression that […]

Looking for a Miracle Obesity Drug from Zafgen

April 25, 2014 — Zafgen — a young biotech company from Cambridge, MA — is preparing for two big milestones this year. A phase 3 clinical trial of its injectable obesity drug is due to start. The company has filed plans to go public with a stock offering that could raise as much as $86 million. Stock analysts are prone to […]

Neglecting Obesity and Cleaning Up Later

April 24, 2014 — This week brings great news about accomplishments in cleaning up the mess created by neglecting obesity. Two studies show that all the money we’re spending on treating diabetes and cardiovascular disease is paying off. Complication rates are dropping and fewer patients go untreated. Meanwhile, a third study shows that three quarters of primary care physicians […]

Huh? Injuries to People with Obesity Matter Less?

April 23, 2014 — A news item from San Antonio has us wondering: do injuries to people with obesity or other chronic diseases matter less? A young woman and her fiancé were hurt by a driver who ran a red light and totaled her car, according to reporters at the local television station, KSAT. In settling the claim for her […]

Who Needs Facts When You Have a Meme?

April 22, 2014 — A meme that deals with nutrition, weight, or fitness gains tremendous potency through the Internet and social media. Repetition bias goes into high gear and unproven, but plausible ideas can quickly reach so many people through so many sources that they can be impossible to extinguish. Because memes spread informally from person to person within […]