Posts Tagged ‘health reporting’

Reporting on the President and Obesity

February 15, 2019 — The president’s doctor, Navy Cmdr. Sean Conley, released a memo yesterday with more details on the president’s health. His cholesterol has come down a bit, but his weight is up. At 243 pounds and an official height of 6’3″, that puts his BMI at 30.4 – in the range of mild obesity. The report says nothing […]

Feasting on the Mythical Magic of Breakfast

February 8, 2019 — Give us our porridge bowl of steel cut oats. It may be “key to living longer,” the BBC tells us. WebMD reports “an abundance of data” to show a link between skipping breakfast and excess weight. But there’s one teensie problem with that assertion – it simply doesn’t hold up to scrutiny. Better Weight Outcomes from […]

Cutting Sugar Clears Up Liver Disease in Children?

January 25, 2019 — JAMA grabbed some headlines this week on a popular subject – cutting sugar consumption for kids. Fatty liver disease is a serious problem and the headlines point to a simple solution. “To fight fatty liver, avoid sugary foods and drinks,” said the New York Times. How did researchers prove that? All it took was a randomized […]

The Top 10 of 2018 in Obesity & Health

December 17, 2018 — 2018 is quickly fading into history. All in all, it’s been a year of some remarkable progress in obesity and health. Much of it is steady and encouraging. More healthcare providers building skill in obesity care. Less explicit weight bias. More options and a little less misinformation about obesity. Those are some of the good […]

One Gene Cures Obesity? Nope

December 8, 2018 — The award for the most annoying obesity story of the week goes to the Flinders University communications office. They win for issuing a press release to hype some genuinely interesting research. But the angle they chose made a joke of the research, spawning headlines about a new gene to cure obesity. Their headline: Gene that lets […]

Blowing Up the Internet with “Starch Bombs”

December 6, 2018 — Bless his heart. No doubt Harvard epidemiology professor Eric Rimm meant well. But his casual comments about potatoes being “starch bombs” have blown up the internet. The New York Times published his starch bomb comment and quoted him as saying: I think it would be nice if your meal came with a side salad and six French […]

What It Means When Scientists Say Results Are “Significant”

November 18, 2018 — Let’s face it, scientific papers aren’t exactly page turners. They are written by scientists, for scientists, and often in a language that seems to only vaguely resemble English. And perhaps one of the most daunting aspects of a scientific paper is the statistics (“stats”) section. But what do stats really mean in the real world? […]

Food Addiction: Science and Storytelling at OW2018

November 13, 2018 — Never let the facts get in the way of a good story. Mark Twain understood this bit of wisdom. Thus we felt his influence at a session yesterday on food addiction at ObesityWeek 2018 in Nashville. Sandwiched between three scientists, we enjoyed an engaging presentation by a journalist with a good story to tell. It’s […]

Dunkin’ Thinkin’ in the News

September 27, 2018 — Honors for the best nutrition news fable of the week goes to Fox News. That’s because intrepid reporter Meredith Lepore made magic from a dense review article on energy requirements for cognitive work. From that humble starting material, she conjured up some great clickbait. Don’t think twice about grabbing an extra donut, she says. So […]

What Happens When PR Overtakes Science?

September 23, 2018 — Brian Wansink has a gift for conceiving research into eating behavior that has long been “catnip for the media.” Now, after a year of contesting accusations of misconduct, he’s resigned from Cornell University. Last week, JAMA retracted six of his papers in a single day. According to Retraction Watch, that makes a total of 13 […]