Archive for November, 2015

Garlic Just Might Make Your Armpits Sexy

November 20, 2015 — It’s an interesting tale of risks and benefits. Just about everyone knows about the risk of garlic breath. But who knew that garlic could make your armpits smell sexy? No kidding, in an elegant, placebo-controlled, crossover study, Jitka Fialová, Craig Roberts, and Jan Havlíčeka found that “garlic consumption may have positive effects on perceived body odour […]

Filtered News on Bariatric Surgery for Teens

November 19, 2015 — It’s been interesting to watch reporting on a landmark study of bariatric surgery for teens ripple through the media. The study, published in the New England Journal of Medicine, documents rather dramatic benefits for bariatric surgery in adolescents with severe obesity. Three years after the surgery, type 2 diabetes was reversed in 95% of teens who […]

Forget Sugar, Maybe Groupthink Causes Obesity

November 18, 2015 — Should the recent news that obesity rates are still climbing prompt rethinking of some popular, but shaky assumptions about what it will take to reverse the trends in obesity? Could it be that groupthink is a key problem that undermines our obesity strategies? It would be hard to miss the fact that like minded people stick […]

Coffee Drinkers Live Longer

November 17, 2015 — Coffee is a great case study for the rehabilitation of a formerly “unhealthy” beverage. A new study published in Circulation adds to the momentum for discarding an increasingly dated concern about the health effects of drinking coffee. In this large observational study, coffee drinkers live longer due to reduced risk of death due to heart […]

Food and Health: What We Assume and What We Know

November 16, 2015 — The relationship between food and health is a complex and often subjective matter. The difference between what is widely assumed to be true and what is objectively known to be true can be very difficult to discern. It’s made harder by the tendency of people to stick with like-minded people on this subject — even in […]

Contrasts Between Food Addiction and Drug Addiction

November 15, 2015 — Food addiction continues to be a slippery concept, but one that has tremendous popular appeal. Some individuals with obesity are steadfast in their convictions that addiction to particular foods plays the a key role in their in their condition. However, objective evidence for addictive disorders in obesity has been elusive. In Progress in Brain Research, […]

Everything in Moderation?

November 14, 2015 — Dietary advice commonly calls for eating a variety of everything in moderation. But like a lot of dietary aphorisms, it seems that dietary variety might be a little overrated. A new study in PLOS ONE finds that greater dietary variety is actually associated with a higher waist circumference. The authors concluded that it is dietary quality, not […]

How Obesity Matters More Than BMI

November 13, 2015 — A new study and commentary in the Annals of Internal Medicine once again points to the fact that obesity — the unhealthy accumulation of adipose tissue — matters much more than BMI. Karine Sahakyan and colleagues analyzed the risk of death in people with obesity defined only by a BMI over 30 to the risk for people with excess […]

Obesity Under Control? No, Wait, It’s Up!

November 12, 2015 — Let’s call it happy-talk whiplash. As recently as a few days ago, health reporters and public health advocates were feeding us headlines along the lines of “Obesity in the U.S. Leveling Off.” The subtext was that we’re starting to get obesity under control. Today we have a new report authored by Cynthia Ogden at the National Center […]

The Risks of Assuming We Know What Causes Obesity

November 11, 2015 — Oscar Wilde long ago warned about the risks of assuming. But that doesn’t put a dent in some deeply held assumptions about what causes obesity. We lived through decades of nutrition policy that assumed excess fat in the diet was responsible for obesity and a host of other chronic diseases. Now we know that those […]