NEWS

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

A Modest Proposal: Treat Obesity Seriously

December 2, 2019 — We have a chronic disease problem. It started in America. It’s spreading all around the world. And already in the U.S. it’s playing a major role in reversing long-term gains in life expectancy. Yet, the response has been tepid, says William Dietz with two commentaries published in the last month. Dietz is Director of the […]

Drinking for Weight Loss: Results Will Vary

December 1, 2019 — It seems like a simple proposition. Stop drinking your calories. Drink water or other non-caloric beverages instead. In the calories-in-calories-out way of thinking, weight loss will be automatic. Drink only water and you’ll be drinking for weight loss. The CHOICE  Study This study actually tested the drinking for weight loss proposition. It was a rigorous […]

Fighting for the Moral High Ground of Nutrition

November 30, 2019 — Human history is full of bloody conflicts to claim moral high ground. The Thirty Years’ War pitted the Holy Roman Empire against Protestant states. But we can find nothing holy in the carnage that resulted. Now we wage our wars on twitter. And true believers go at it to claim the moral high ground of […]

Sizzling Headlines About Brain Damage

November 29, 2019 — The PR team at the Radiological Society of North America (RSNA) hit a home run this week. They were playing in the ongoing contest to create the most misinformative but sizzling headlines about scientific research. Their winning headline was doozy: MRI reveals brain damage in obese teens. Of course, that misleading press release was only […]

Was Your Turkey Fed Vegetarians?

November 28, 2019 — Today, roughly 88 percent of Americans will be eating a turkey. That means 46 million turkeys consumed. But we have a burning question. What does vegetarian fed mean? Was your turkey fed vegetarians? Fed by vegetarians? Or maybe, contrary to its omnivorian nature, fed a vegetarian diet? Vegetarian Fed Left to their own devices – […]

Obesity, Despair, and Mortality in the U.S.

November 27, 2019 — We’ve only just begun. That was once a hopeful refrain. But now, it applies to a worrisome trend. Working age people in the U.S. are dying at rates that are unprecedented among wealthy countries. This finding comes from a stunning, comprehensive study of a reversal in U.S. life expectancy. Because it’s now in its third […]

Is Public Health Only for Thin People?

November 26, 2019 — Let’s be clear. Anti-fat bias is everywhere we turn. It’s less explicit these days. But implicit anti-fat bias is stronger than ever. And you can find it in people who are thin and people who are not. There’s actually research on that. However, that same research tells us that thinner people tend to have stronger […]

Elusive Obesity Culprits: Endocrine Disrupting Chemicals

November 25, 2019 — The assumption is everywhere. Obesity is simply the result of “eating too much and moving too little…poor diet and lifestyle choices.” So says the UK’s National Health Service. But in fact, it’s not so simple. And it’s worth considering the impact of drugs and other chemicals that nudge us to a higher weight. These are […]

The Blame Game: Nature, Nurture, and Obesity

November 24, 2019 — Who dunnit? That was the essence of the debate between Sadaf Farooqi and John Wilding at the Society for Endocrinology BES Conference in Brighton, UK. Some very smart people have a tough time wrapping their brains around nature, nurture, and obesity. So Farooqi and Wilding took opposite sides of a simple proposition: This house believes […]

Sleep More, Weigh Less? Actually, Probably, Yes

November 23, 2019 — Sleep, stress, and obesity are clearly related. But the relationship is complicated and causality is tough to unravel. Stress interferes with sleep. So does obesity. And then, too, both stress and too little sleep can contribute to obesity. So if you sleep more, will you weight less? A natural experiment in Korea tells us for […]