Archive for the ‘Health & Obesity’ Category

Thin Privilege and White Fragility

July 4, 2020 — “I’m tired of people suggesting I should feel guilty about racism,” someone told us recently. That sentiment is a near-perfect expression of white fragility. Many people enjoy the unearned privileges of being white in a racist society. But they don’t like to think about it. Likewise, many people who are fit, able, and thin enjoy […]

Bing! One Less Dose of Explicit Weight Bias

July 4, 2020 — Change comes in increments. Because humans are wired for bias, the bias against people at higher weights is especially hard to escape. But we take heart from explicit signs of such bias erased. Small victories count, too. This week, one such victory came when Bing took down an appalling entry for childhood obesity, filled with […]

The Deadly Effects of Delayed Care in the Pandemic

July 3, 2020 — The cost of delayed care for chronic diseases – such as heart disease, stroke, and diabetes – is steep in this pandemic. In fact, three separate analyses this week give us a glimpse of excess deaths in the early months of this continuing tragedy. But unfortunately, pinning these numbers down is a tricky business. However, […]

Fatty Liver, Obesity, and COVID-19

July 2, 2020 — Sometimes, a health crisis serves to clear the mind and prompt scientific curiosity. In fact, we see that in a steady stream of new research building an understanding of how COVID-19 leaves some people unharmed and others devastated. A new paper in Obesity offers a fine example. Ming Deng and colleagues bring new insights to […]

Worldwide Physical Activity Fell 27% in the Lockdown

July 1, 2020 — Stay home, save lives! When the edict went out, speculation began immediately. How much will physical activity drop in the lockdown? What will be the unintended consequences? In Annals of Internal Medicine this week, we have a few answers. Based on step counts, physical activity dropped 27 percent worldwide in a sample of data from […]

The Tortured Pathway for a New NASH Treatment

June 30, 2020 — It’s tough getting good information these days. Good, factual information. Everybody wants to spin it. That’s undeniable in public policy. But it also seems to be true in drug development. Yesterday, the FDA definitively rejected an application from Intercept Pharmaceuticals for a new drug to treat NASH – nonalcoholic steatohepatitis. The company was shocked. Its […]

Urban Legends of Obesity Prevention

June 29, 2020 — For the last four decades, obesity prevention has been quite a challenge. We’ve heard much talk about bold programs. We’ve seen more than a few victory celebrations. And yet, the prevalence of obesity keeps climbing. So recently, when Tamar Haspel wrote about “jaw-dropping” success in Huntington, WV, she caught our attention. She described a drop […]

What’s Up with Vitamin D and the Coronavirus?

June 28, 2020 — The pandemic has been tough on many businesses, but it’s been a boon to others. Dietary supplement sales, for example, are feeding quite nicely on our fears. At the top of the list is vitamin D, getting a boost from speculation that deficiencies could make a person more vulnerable to the coronavirus. However, the bottom […]

CDC Broadens Guidance on Obesity Risk for COVID-19

June 27, 2020 — Early in the pandemic, CDC identified a higher risk for severe symptoms with COVID-19 in people with severe obesity. This week, the agency broadened its guidance to include all individuals with a BMI of 30 or greater. This is the epidemiologic benchmark for obesity – severe or not. What’s more, it’s a benchmark that describes […]

Will Opening Gyms Spread COVID-19? An RCT

June 26, 2020 — People are dying to get back to normal right now. Or at least, judging by news reports, some are certainly willing to take risks. Gyms are a particular sore spot. Michigan Governor Gretchen Whitmer has been in court to prevent gyms from opening and spreading COVID-19 in her state. Other states are opening their gyms. […]