Posts Tagged ‘obesity prevention’

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 […]

Obesity: Can We Blame It on Cheap Gas?

November 13, 2021 — Jeff Colgan and Miriam Hinthorn have a provocative new paper suggesting that cheap gas drives obesity prevalence higher. At first glance, the title of their paper borders on sensational: “Is cheap gasoline killing us?” It worked. They made us look, even though (or perhaps because) the implicit claim of cause and effect is so absurd. […]

Hunting for the Causes of Obesity, and Maybe Solutions

November 11, 2021 — The chronic disease of obesity is tough to wrap our heads around. On one hand, many people consider themselves to be amateur experts. Consumer media – and our spam folder – is full of glib advice about how to “lose belly fat.” Advice about foods that cause weight gain is everywhere. But the truth is […]

How Hard and Helpful Is It to Admit We Don’t Know?

October 22, 2021 — “What happens when health officials tell the full truth?” asked David Leonhardt in the New York Times recently. He was writing about the value of admitting to uncertainty in public health. In a similar vein, Paul Krugman wrote recently about the power of admitting that nobody knows the right answer to a thorny problem. And […]

Tortured Logic About Obesity Prevention

August 31, 2021 — Can an ineffective program to prevent obesity be cost effective? Our first impulse is to say no. But a new paper in Obesity Science and Practice says yes. Mariette Derwig and colleagues tested a child-centered approach in Sweden. They found no effect in their well-designed study. However, this inconvenient result did not get in the […]

Understanding the Legacy of Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids

August 13, 2021 — A decade has passed since President Barack Obama signed the Healthy, Hunger-Free Kids Act into law. In this time of great polarization, any big policy decision can generate controversy and this one is no exception. The purpose was to improve the quality of nutrition provided in school lunch and breakfast program, But some want to […]

Shifting from More to Better in Food Systems

August 10, 2021 — We have food systems that have done a fine job of meeting goals to provide abundant quantities of nourishment. But there is broad agreement that this abundant food supply has fueled global growth in obesity. So the question becomes what to do about it. Can we fix food systems by shifting from a mission to […]

Enduring Arguments About “Medicalizing” Obesity

July 26, 2021 — It’s been eight years since the American Medical Association resolved that obesity is a complex, chronic disease. But still, the argument endures. For different reasons, some people continue to resist what they see as medicalizing obesity. So with the closing session of the YWM2021 convention, it was quite interesting to hear a discussion from two […]

Tax the Poor to Overcome Obesity

July 23, 2021 — The UK has a proposal for a new national food strategy, but it seems to be sailing in some very choppy waters. The most noted feature of this plan is its proposal to tax the sugar and salt that goes into processed, restaurant, and catered food to help overcome obesity. In addition, there’s a proposal […]

Dependence, Independence, and Offering Care

July 4, 2021 — This is a day for Americans to celebrate independence. Though the holiday marks independence from a colonial power, Americans invest a lot in a broader concept of independence. Dependence on others for many things – including care for health – is essential for strong communities, and yet Americans celebrate a spirit of independence. It wasn’t […]