Posts Tagged ‘health promotion’

Scolding Instead of Helping with Chronic Illness

October 8, 2023 — We have a problem with the health of America and it is fundamental. Chronic illness is killing too many of us too soon. It’s not getting better, either. Instead of helping with chronic illness, much of the response amounts to scolding the people who suffer with it. Much of the problem can be traced to […]

Using Conspiracy Theories and Fear for Public Health

September 20, 2023 — Apparently big food is not scary enough. The Washington Post wants you to know that it’s really big tobacco that is selling you those noxious and addictive Teddy Grahams to destroy the health of your children. For this report, they rely on a paper by Tera Fazzino and colleagues. This continues a tradition of using […]

Food Ultra-Processed, Formulated, and Marketed

February 4, 2023 — In the realm of food, boogeymen come and go. But right now, the bad actor with staying power in global diets seems to be ultra-processed, industrially formulated, and hyper-marketed foods. What’s not to hate about them? There’s plenty of observational data, and even some good experimental data to make us suspicious. It gives us good […]

Exercise from the Ministry of Silly Walks to BMJ

December 22, 2022 — More 50 years ago, John Cleese ran the Ministry of Silly Walks for a skit on Monty Python’s Flying Circus. He interviewed a grant applicant who had a silly walk and told Cleese that “with government backing I could make it very silly.” Now this little exercise has made it from the Ministry of Silly […]

Desired Behavior versus Health Improvement

November 27, 2022 — A new systematic review prompts us to wonder once again, what is the point of public health interventions targeting obesity? Is it to nudge people toward desired behavior or is it health improvement? Sandrine Lioret and colleagues recently published a systematic review of efforts to improve behaviors or prevent obesity in children during their first […]

Stepping Up Your Steps: Is More Really Better?

October 12, 2022 — In a typical day, most people really don’t move around that much. The simplest way of quantifying this is by counting steps and the average for an American adult is between three and four thousand per day. The default goal for improving on this became 10,000 steps – probably because an early pedometer called the […]

The Intersection of Health Messaging and Truth

September 25, 2022 — An impressive amount of thought and effort goes into messaging about health. Honorable people work diligently to move the population toward healthier lives. They craft messages for leading people to stop smoking, get their vaccinations, eat healthy, stay active and fit. The creativity and strategic skill are impressive. But one dimension of effective and sustainable […]

Conflicted Interests in the Healthy Living Industry

March 6, 2022 — The law of the instrument suggests that the tool at hand when a problem presents itself seems like the right one to use. When all we have is a hammer, everything looks a bit more like a nail. So we pound it. And in the healthy living industry (aka wellness) we have quite a hammer. […]

Celebrating and Vanquishing Fear on Halloween

October 31, 2021 — Many fears are plaguing us right now. A virus is still killing more than five thousand people every day around the world – more than a thousand daily in the U.S. Some people are fearful of spending time indoors with others who are unmasked or unvaccinated. Others are fearful of the masks and the vaccines. […]

Obesity Screening in School: Can We Please Stop Now?

March 27, 2021 — In the new issue of Childhood Obesity, Sarah Armstrong and Ted Kyle tell us the time has come to stop screening for obesity in school. The reason is simple. This screening harms children, but offers them no benefit. Telling a child or the child’s parent they are fat doesn’t help. It does nothing for their […]