Posts Tagged ‘obesity prevention’

Urban Legends of Obesity Prevention

June 29, 2020 — For the last four decades, obesity prevention has been quite a challenge. We’ve heard much talk about bold programs. We’ve seen more than a few victory celebrations. And yet, the prevalence of obesity keeps climbing. So recently, when Tamar Haspel wrote about “jaw-dropping” success in Huntington, WV, she caught our attention. She described a drop […]

Eat Healthier, Move More, Prevent COVID-19 Problems?

June 13, 2020 — So simple. Dariush Mozaffarian has the answer for preventing problems with COVID-19. Eat healthier and move more. That’s it. According to him, the response to COVID-19, as impressive as it’s been, has been inadequate. He wants to know why governors aren’t telling everybody to exercise more every day and “eat a little bit healthier.” It […]

Correlation, Causality, Breastfeeding, and Obesity

June 12, 2020 — The distinction between correlation and causality is basic to any serious scientist. But in PLOS Genetics yesterday, scientists toss it out the window. Yanyan Wu et al found an association between breastfeeding and obesity. Then they lept to claim cause and effect. Right up front in their title, they make the bold claim. “Exclusive breastfeeding […]

“Big Sugar” Wants Other Sweeteners Called Out

June 7, 2020 — No fair! So says the Sugar Association. “Big sugar” petitioned FDA last week because they want food labeling to call out non-caloric sweeteners. Not just sugar. You can’t really blame them for trying. Righteous food activists have been beating up on sugar so much, for so long, that per capita consumption of sugar and caloric […]

Helping People Fear Bad Food and Beverages

June 2, 2020 — Nutrition Live Online 2020 opened with NIH Director Francis Collins and the Presidential Symposium on the ethics of eating. We had expected to be wowed by Director Collins. And of course, he is impressive. However, Harvard’s Anna Grummond impressed us even more. She explained that it’s ethically OK to put warnings on food that might […]

Is Your Neighborhood Making You Fat? Maybe Not

May 25, 2020 — Play deserts, food deserts, food swamps. These are elegant metaphors to sell an appealing narrative. The story they tell is simple. Certain types of neighborhoods might cause obesity. Some researchers have found correlations between fast food outlets and obesity prevalence in some studies. Others have found that neighborhoods with more resources for physical activity have […]

Boris Johnson Gets Religion on Obesity

May 16, 2020 — A near death experience with COVID-19 has made Boris Johnson a sudden believer in policies to address obesity. “It’s all right for you thinnies,” says Johnson in discussing the matter. Apparently, he attributes the seriousness of his encounter with the coronavirus to his own obesity. (His BMI was approximately 36 at the time.) So now, […]

Mixed Results in the Holy War Against Sweet Drinks

May 13, 2020 — Two new papers give us a mixed picture of results from the holy war to drive sweet drinks from the American diet. On the front lines in Oakland, California, economists tell us that a beverage tax has had negligible effects. But the good news is that perhaps that doesn’t matter. Researchers have discovered that sweetened […]

A Model for Curing Childhood Obesity in Mexico

April 26, 2020 — When reality is filled with pesky problems, people need an escape. With a new paper in Pediatric Obesity Rossana Torres‐Álvarez et al offer us such an escape. They describe a model for the effectiveness of beverage taxes to reduce childhood obesity in Mexico. Based on assumptions that these taxes will work, they built their model. […]

Model Assumptions for Driving Health Policy

April 22, 2020 — “I was never involved in a model. At least this kind of a model,” said our President at a recent press briefing. But now it seems that all of us are getting a crash course in modeling and model assumptions for making health policy. Perhaps we will learn to think more critically about the output […]