Archive for the ‘Food & Nutrition’ Category

Atlantic Diet Study: Benefits from More Than Just a Diet

February 22, 2024 — “Is the Atlantic diet the new Mediterranean miracle?” This headline (and a host of others like it) says a lot about the ultra-processing of nutrition research by consumer media. It takes a fascinating study about the health effects of a traditional pattern for eating called the Atlantic diet and removes all the nuance. The product […]

The Cost of Broken Global Food Systems: $15 Trillion per Year

February 19, 2024 — Global food systems are a slow-rolling disaster, gaining momentum, and costing the global economy $15 trillion per year. That’s the bad news from a new policy report of the Food System Economics Commission (FSEC). The good news is that we have options, they report, which could produce economic and health benefits adding up to as […]

No, Chocolate Is Not Really Medicine

February 14, 2024 — It seems obvious. If food is medicine, shouldn’t we be confident that chocolate is medicine? Certainly, Uma Naidoo is happy to sell you on this idea. She is a nutritional psychiatrist and author of “This Is Your Brain on Food: An Indispensable Guide to the Surprising Foods That Fight Depression, Anxiety, PTSD, OCD, ADHD and […]

Artificial Intelligence Falls Short on Complex Nutrition Guidance

February 13, 2024 — Artificial intelligence is hard at work, reshaping healthcare delivery, as well as the delivery of profits from healthcare. So what does this mean for the delivery of dietary services? Can Chat GPT and other artificial intelligence technologies help with the complex task of delivering nutrition guidance for health? Maybe. Or maybe not yet. People have […]

The Snack Industry Won the Super Bowl

February 12, 2024 — Forget the Kansas City Chiefs and Taylor Swift. Well before the game ever started, it was very clear who would win the Super Bowl – the snack industry. The snacking industrial complex has been locked into hyperdrive for weeks, if not months, in preparation for last night’s event. The enticements were everywhere. The clickbait was […]

Kimchi for the Win in Obesity? Not Really

February 10, 2024 — The setup has been great. Kimchi lands near the top of the list of “must-eat fermented foods for a healthy gut.” On top of that, nutrition gurus advise us “food is medicine” and a fermented food diet “increases microbiome diversity and decreases inflammatory proteins.” So we should be ready to believe when a study tells […]

Ultra-Processed Foods: Facts, Fiction, and Speculation

February 5, 2024 — The perils of ultra-processed foods received widespread coverage in recent months – thanks in no small part to the publication and promotion of TV presenter and doctor of virology Chris Van Tulleken’s book Ultra-Processed People. Ultra-processed foods, in short, are commercially manufactured food products that include ingredients you wouldn’t cook with at home. Some of this […]

Mindfulness, Setbacks, and Self-Compassion

February 4, 2024 — February is an excellent month to consider the virtue of self-compassion – both generally and also specifically for dealing with setbacks in the goals we might be pursuing for this new year. Why? Well, to begin with, we’ve survived January and as Roz Chast and many others remind us, it can be a long and […]

The Rise of Contempt Above Curiosity and Reason

January 28, 2024 — In public life and unfortunately, in science and health policy, we find too often that contempt takes over from curiosity and reason. It is obvious in politics and likely to get painful this year. But it is not confined to the political realm. In nutrition and obesity research, we find that people are often ready […]

Plant-Based Diets Cut COVID Risk? Not Exactly

January 20, 2024 — We do admire the tenacity of folks who promote the virtues of a plant-based diet. But that admiration stops when we move on to the dimension of scientific rigor and objectivity. In BMJ Nutrition, Prevention, and Health, a group of researchers are claiming that plant-based diets “may be considered protective against COVID-19 infection.” The only […]