Archive for July, 2016

Better Food at School?

July 31, 2016 — Flamin’ Hot Cheetos, soggy chicken tenders, fries, and pizza have not entirely disappeared from school cuisine, but they seem to be fading. Last week, the USDA announced four new rules intended to seal the legacy of better food at school under the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act of 2010. With these rules, snacks sold at school […]

The Next Superfood? Cockroach Milk, Naturally

July 30, 2016 — We should have seen this coming. Nutrition scientists are declaring that cockroach milk will be the next hot new superfood. According to Sanchari Banerjee, Pacific beetle cockroaches produce milk crystals that possess an impressive nutritional profile: The crystals are like a complete food – they have proteins, fats and sugars. If you look into the protein sequences, […]

“Just Keep Doing What You’re Doing”

July 29, 2016 — We hear much and write much about some of the appalling experiences of people with obesity when they interact with healthcare professionals. And most of the time, primary care providers just avoid the subject. But perhaps the most frustrating experience comes when a professional dismisses a patient who is seeking advice. “Just keep doing what you’re […]

Four Paths from Links to Cause and Effect

July 28, 2016 — Every day, research finds new links to obesity in behaviors, nutrition, the environment, and an array of other factors. And every day, headlines falsely suggest a cause and effect relationship in those links. A recent example is a widely reported link between late bedtimes for preschoolers and obesity in teenagers. The headlines tell parents to tuck their […]

Retrain the Brain to Treat Obesity?

July 27, 2016 — A body of fascinating research is coming together to suggest that it might be possible to retrain the brain and alter its response to food cues in a way that provides meaningful reductions in obesity. The promise lies with interventions that use insights about brain responses to food and inhibit the brain activity that contributes […]

Whatever Happened to MYOB?

July 26, 2016 — MYOB – the classic advice to stop giving unsolicited advice – seems to have fallen out of daily conversations. Or so it would seem when the subject is someone else’s health and weight. Right now social media is all atwitter over how skinny or fat plus-size model Ashley Graham is. Last week, she posted a photo of herself […]

Even True Believers Need a Control Group

July 25, 2016 — Sigh. A previously published study – which lacks a control group – is cropping up in a new form to beat the drum of claims that sugar is toxic. Based on a dataset published last year in Obesity, a new publication has just appeared in Atherosclerosis. The first publication from this dataset advanced a claim that holding calories […]

Dietary and Planetary Health

July 24, 2016 — The relationship between dietary health and planetary health seems unlikely to fade from public view. A new study published by scientists from Cornell, Syracuse, and Tufts finds different diets have an enormous impact on sustainable land use. By modeling the impact of different diets, the researchers found that the average American diet cuts the capacity of available land […]

Special K Nutritious? Not So Fast, Says Regulator

July 23, 2016 — Once again, health claims for a well-known food brand are under fire. This time it’s Special K, a cereal brand that has long been sold with nutrition and health claims. The UK Advertising Standards Authority banned TV and web advertsing that included unsubstantiated health claims. The claims  were pretty unremarkable. Special K was described as “nutritious” […]

Targeting Obesity: Win Some, Lose Some

July 22, 2016 — Targeting obesity with new treatments presents remarkable challenges. For evidence of this harsh reality, look at the sharply contrasting news this week for two potential new drugs: beloranib and setmelanotide. All work on beloranib was canceled by its developer, Zafgen. Almost simultaneously, Rhythm Pharmaceuticals published breakthrough results in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) […]