Archive for the ‘Health & Obesity’ Category

Cabbage Crowned, Lettuce Loses in Nutrition Correlation

July 25, 2020 — Is nutritional epidemiology suffering from overexposure? A study of veggies and COVID-19 mortality prompts this question. This exercise in nutrition correlation comes from a pre-print. So we can’t blame lax peer reviewers for this one. But the manuscript does make some remarkable claims: For each g/day increase in the average national consumption of some of […]

Making Sense of Obesity and Bad COVID Outcomes

July 25, 2020 — Why? It’s that simple question that toddlers employ against their parents. But it’s pure genius. Maybe we’re past the shock, denial, and anger of coming to terms with COVID-19 and obesity. Clearly, if someone gets COVID-19, having obesity adds to the problem. The risk of severe symptoms is higher, as is the risk of landing […]

A Blind Spot in UK Obesity Planning

July 24, 2020 — Any day now, we will see a new obesity plan for the UK. Some of the loudest voices in the process leading up to this great unveiling have been focused on prevention. But this is a problem that already affects 64 percent of the population in England. In my opinion, this focus reflects simplistic weight […]

Dietary Dark Matter: What Are We Eating?

July 23, 2020 — Do you know what you’re having for lunch? You might think so. But in fact, the food that we are consuming is so complex, that we only have a vague idea of what’s in it. Through a project called FooDB, scientists have cataloged more than 70,000 biologically active chemicals that may be present in our […]

BMI Is Racist and Sexist? Yes, Just as Numbers Lie

July 22, 2020 — Oh my, we do love to hate BMI. Monday on Huffpost, Christine Byrne dispensed the latest argument against this villainous measure. BMI is racist. What’s more, she tells us it’s sexist, too. Definitely, this sounds bad, this composite index of height and weight. Is this a case of an innocent little number worming its way […]

COVID-19: Prioritizing Bariatric and Metabolic Surgery

July 21, 2020 — A healthy conversation is shaping up because of COVID-19. It’s all about the gap between talk and action on obesity. In the UK, it has a hashtag: #ActOnObsityNow. Though it’s happening more quietly in the U.S., the same conversation is in play. Will actions match our words about the urgency of obesity? The question of […]

A UK Obesity Plan for Obesity Care in the NHS?

July 20, 2020 — Anticipation is growing. A UK obesity plan is coming soon from Boris Johnson’s administration. Johnson has latched onto a conviction that Britain must slim down to fare better in the next wave of the coronavirus pandemic. It’s not a bad idea. But will it be all about inspiration and exhortation? Or instead, will it bring […]

The New Normal vs Hope for a Better Future

July 19, 2020 — People adapt. This is a powerful fact of human psychology that hands us the problem of shifting baselines. When circumstances change, people come to accept a new normal. Even jarring changes, such as the blitz on London during World War II, might shock people at first. Yet after a time, people come to accept a […]

Health and Fitness, No Gym Required

July 18, 2020 — The fitness industry is a bit of a mess right now. That’s because, in many places, health clubs are not very healthy places to be. The great indoors is a great place to share the coronavirus. Especially if you’re sweating and breathing hard. But Jack Raglin, a kinesiology professor at the Indiana University School of […]

Disparities in Obesity: The View from an Ivory Tower

July 17, 2020 — This week from the New England Journal of Medicine, a perspective on COVID-19, disparities, nutrition, and obesity popped up. Great! But then we read it. Social determinants of health . . . a healthy diet . . . food deserts . . . minority groups face hurdles. The authors piled on familiar phrases. In sum, […]