The Top 10 Most Read Posts of 2023 on ConscienHealth

The ReaderNo two ways about it. This has been a big year of milestones in obesity and health. We and many others are still processing what we have witnessed in these past 12 months. But one way to gain perspective is to look at 2023 stats for the posts on ConscienHealth that you, a wise group of readers, have read most this year.

So here is the list – the top ten most read of our 2023 posts on ConscienHealth.

1. 60 Minutes on Obesity Care

Two people we greatly respect, Caroline Apovian and Fatima Cody Stanford, spent hours with Leslie Stahl and the 60 Minutes news crew for an exploration or obesity care in a broken system of healthcare. We have new knowledge and clinical tools to improve the health and the lives of people with obesity. Yet we have health systems calibrated to deny people care.

2. The SELECT Study Results

This is huge news that will resonate for years to come. The results of an epic RCT called SELECT showed that treating obesity with semaglutide cuts deaths, strokes, and heart attacks in people with a history of heart disease by a whopping 20%. This should settle many questions about the genuine value of treating obesity. We had two other posts on the subject, here and here, that scored highly in the 2023 most-read ranking.

3. “Deadly Consequences” of Sweeteners

The World Health Organization put out a fib in May, suggesting that sweeteners have “deadly long-term consequences” for health. Not good. They generated appealing, but misleading clickbait that we lament.

4. Ripples from the Success of GLP-1 Obesity Medicines

Wall Street had a bit of a panic when people started speculating about ripples through the economy from the emergence and embrace of effective obesity treatment. Interesting, but somewhat premature speculation.

5. Lilly Snaps Up Bimagrumab

Bimagrumab is a fascinating experimental drug for obesity with unique effects. It seems to help people gain muscle even while they lose fat. After Novartis discarded it, the molecule languished for a while. Then this year, as the world fell in love with obesity medicines, Lilly bought the rights to develop it with an offer of up to two billion dollars. This was a stunning a reversal of fortunes

6. Truth & Fiction from HAES

With the embrace of obesity treatment this year and especially with the emergence of a new guideline for pediatric obesity care, the rhetoric from Health at Every Size advocates became heated this year. As its rhetoric heated up, though, the credibility of the movement cooled somewhat.

7. Big Shifts in Lifestyle Programs

The loud success of GLP-1 medicines this year brought many questions about the future of lifestyle programs for obesity. Big changes at Weight Watchers are a signal that big shifts in foundational concepts lie ahead.

8. Defining Obesity

BMI has always been a sloppy way to define obesity. So the work of the Lancet Commission on the Definition and Diagnosis of Clinical Obesity commanded your attention. We expect big news on this in the new year.

9. Ultra-Processing of Study Results in Nutrition

My goodness, ultra-processed foods have been a hot topic this year. Overconfident zealots have convinced many people that bringing down ultra-processed foods is the key to bringing down obesity rates. But hyperbole is not helpful. So it is gratifying that you, our readers, paid close attention to corrections to a study of ultra-processed foods in pregnant women. You guys are smart.

10. Supply, Price, and Access to Obesity Medicines

We have not sugar-coated this. Novo Nordisk has done a poor job this year of assuring an adequate supply of their outstanding obesity medicines at affordable prices with good access for patients across the spectrum of economic circumstances. We have high regard for the research and investment by Novo Nordisk to create these medicines. But we regret their less stellar performance on social responsibility in the marketplace. We hope to see them doing better in the coming year.

The Reader, painting by Honore Daumier / WikiArt

Subscribe by email to follow the accumulating evidence and observations that shape our view of health, obesity, and policy.


December 21, 2023

One Response to “The Top 10 Most Read Posts of 2023 on ConscienHealth”

  1. December 21, 2023 at 12:30 pm, Sarah Kennedy said:

    Thank you Ted for the amazing content you continue to put out

    Happy festive season!