NEWS

Follow the accumulating evidence and observations that shape our view of health policy and obesity

Looking for a Good Measure of Obesity in Kids

January 20, 2022 — After four decades of agitation about childhood obesity it seems like we might safely assume that scientists can measure and track it with confidence. But it turns out that this is not exactly true. Why? Because of flaws in something called the BMI z-score. Body fat quite normally changes in children with age. What’s healthy […]

Telehealth Works in Obesity Care, but What’s Next?

January 19, 2022 — A new study in Obesity tells us that telehealth can work just fine in obesity care. But what will the future hold? Payers and patients will likely have their their say. Already, telehealth businesses have had quite a bumpy ride. A prime example would be Teledoc, which saw its stock soar from $83 per share […]

Has January Morphed into Anti-Diet Season?

January 18, 2022 — It is something of an underground PR triumph. What has long been a season of short-lived diets and unused gym memberships now seems to be a season for mindfulness and intuitive eating. It is a season for beating up on diet culture instead of beating up on ourselves. A descriptive title for the mood of […]

Finding Obesity Risk in Babies

January 17, 2022 — The track record for preventing obesity in childhood is not especially impressive. Could it improve with objective measures to identify babies most at risk for obesity as they grow up? A new study of data from the INSIGHT program has found a new polygenic risk score that might help with this. There’s just one little […]

Drawing a Line Between Critical Thinking and Behavior

January 16, 2022 — Critical thinking is vital for progress. It really doesn’t matter whether the goal is overcoming obesity, COVID, or economic hardship. Rigorous, objective analysis allows us to recognize the truth of the situation we’re dealing with and then find solutions. But that’s not the end of the story, because the behavior that flows from critical thinking […]

Preventable COVID Deaths in Adolescents

January 15, 2022 — A new study this week in the New England Journal of Medicine brought home a basic fact. Severe illness and deaths from COVID in adolescents are almost entirely preventable. This is especially true for youth with conditions – like obesity – that would otherwise put them at risk. In a case-control study of 1,222 adolescents, […]

Does Anybody Care What’s in French Dressing?

January 14, 2022 — FDA announced yesterday that it is revoking the standard of identity for French dressing. That means food makers can now put any otherwise legal ingredients into a bottle and call it French dressing. To some people, this is obviously trivial news. So what if the FDA no longer cares too much about what goes into French salad […]

Why Are We Failing on Diabetes Health Risks?

January 13, 2022 — The numbers are stark. More than 80 percent of Americans with diabetes are not meeting clinical targets to reduce heart disease risk. For people with both diabetes and obesity, more than 90 percent are bearing unnecessary risk. These numbers come from a new scientific statement in Circulation from the American Heart Association. On top of […]

Suddenly Bullish on Anti-Obesity Medicines?

January 12, 2022 — It’s been a long haul. But suddenly, we’re seeing a lot of optimism about anti-obesity medicines. Skeptics are yielding to stubborn facts about the impact of obesity on health. They are also yielding to good clinical data about the benefits of sound obesity care. So, too, are they seeing that newer generations of anti-obesity medicines […]

What Do We Really Know About “Slow” Metabolism?

January 11, 2022 — Some of the biggest and most read stories of 2021 were about new and better insights into human metabolism. Now it looks like the flood of information will flow into 2022. Already we have two new papers to digest. One, from evolutionary biologist Thomas Kraft and colleagues, offers new thinking on how humans evolved to […]