Posts Tagged ‘COVID-19’

The Untidy Reality of Living Larger in a Lockdown

October 24, 2020 — A tidy narrative attracts the human mind. When they ring true, generalizations are seductive. They wipe away the complex mess of real life. For example, the untidy reality of living through the pandemic lockdown leaves us eager to make sense of it. So a new paper describing a global survey of health behaviors in the […]

When the Ring of Truth Is Merely Confirmation Bias

October 22, 2020 — In the face of uncertainty, humans often rely on the ring of truth. Facing a pandemic and big changes to daily life, reports of depression and anxiety grow. Surely this will bring a spike in suicides, people say. Equally certain is the belief that childhood obesity will rise. But sometimes, the ring of truth is […]

Alcohol Adding to the Health Burden of COVID-19

October 18, 2020 — New research from Rand and the Indiana University School of Public Health at Bloomington offers a vivid picture of two major health risks colliding. Alcohol use is growing more frequent during the COVID-19 pandemic. Also, it’s growing heavier. This is not what we need, because alcohol use is already the number one global health risk […]

How Happy Are We? Twitter Says Not Very

October 17, 2020 — We are living in uneasy times. If you want to quantify that, check out the Hedonometer at the Computational Story Lab at the University of Vermont. According to their analyses, Twitter was a pretty happy place before 2020. Peter Dodds and colleagues on the Hedonometer project wrote in 2015 that human language has a “universal […]

Bariatric Surgery? Only if You Want a Longer Life

October 16, 2020 — We understand. Surgery is daunting. Bias against people living with obesity is rampant. Some friends and family will criticize. Some doctors will discourage. Health plans often make it hard. So many people feel reluctance about seeking bariatric surgery. But a new study in the New England Journal of Medicine reminds us. This is not right. […]

Un-Fake News: Deaths Up by 20 Percent

October 13, 2020 — On a recent visit to our least favorite dentist, with a mouth full of cotton, we heard this: “People die all the time. This coronavirus thing is not such a big deal.” A new report in JAMA, tells us just how wrong she was. Deaths indeed do happen all the time. But from March to […]

CDC: Possible COVID Risk with Overweight

October 11, 2020 — This week, the CDC added overweight to its list of conditions that might bring increased risk for severe symptoms with COVID-19. By that, the agency means anyone with a BMI between 25 and 30. For a BMI of 30 and above, CDC does not mince words. Your risk is higher. Think about it. This means […]

Weight Discrimination and Depression in the Pandemic

October 9, 2020 — “I don’t know how everyone else is coping but I’ve been up and down like a rollercoaster,” says Ricki Frost of Middlesbrough, England. His comments point to the mental health challenges brought by the coronavirus pandemic. Depression and anxiety are high on that list. What’s more, weight discrimination can make it worse. New research in […]

Scholarly Heat and Light and Vitamin D in the Pandemic

October 6, 2020 — We are reading a ferocious wave of scholarly debate about Vitamin D. Though it’s over a century old, scientists still find plenty of room for debate. Especially now, in the midst of the COVID-19 pandemic, vitamin D is a hot topic. And yet, despite all this debate, the bottom line seems relatively straightforward. If your […]

An Awful Mashup: COVID, Stigma, and Eating Disorders

October 5, 2020 — A new paper from the Rudd Center reminds us how noxious the weight talk in popular media is right now. Rebecca Puhl and colleagues found that weight stigma during the COVID-19 pandemic is toxic. In young adults, past experience of stigma predict problems in coping now. The risk of binge eating triples. Symptoms of depression […]