Posts Tagged ‘politics’

Dietary Guidelines: Transforming Conflicts into Expertise

May 10, 2019 — This is a pretty neat trick. Conflicts of interest are now officially dead. Lobbying for high fructose corn syrup isn’t a conflict of interest for drafting dietary guidelines. It’s a qualification. Evidence of expertise. USDA has put a high fructose corn syrup lobbyist in charge of overseeing new Dietary Guidelines for Americans. This would have […]

The Value of Curiosity

March 31, 2019 — How do smart people hold onto some stupid ideas? Motivated reasoning is one very important way. People start with a belief that’s very important to them. Then, they collect information to support it. Also, they arrange their information into a rationale that supports their belief. The result is a fortress of conviction. But one thing […]

Myths, Presumptions, and Denying Access to Obesity Care

March 4, 2019 — It sounded like she was thinking about scrambling eggs. “I don’t want to crack open Medicare Part D for obesity meds,” said this bright young Senate health staffer last week. “Don’t you think a lot of this is coming from depression?” she asked. Such are the questions we hear from some policymakers about obesity care. […]

Will Eggs Replace the Endangered Cheeseburger?

March 2, 2019 — Eggs are coming on strong, but your beloved cheeseburger is under siege. Certain political pundits say that Alexandria Ocasio-Cortez is going to take away your cheeseburger. However, the truth is that the real threat to that cheeseburger comes from market forces. The Endangered Cheeseburger Consumers simply don’t want as much red meat these days. More […]

Obesity Prevention Progress in Focus Groups

February 24, 2019 — The results are in. It looks like we’ve got a winner. And that winner is the sweeping regulation of food marketing in Chile for obesity prevention. A new study in the International Journal of Behavioral Nutrition and Physical Activity just came out to prove the point. The study findings “were overwhelmingly positive,” says UNC-Chapel Hill […]

A New Expert Committee for New Dietary Guidelines

February 23, 2019 — We have an interesting climb ahead. Yesterday the USDA announced members of the 2020 Dietary Guidelines Advisory Committee. Clearly some groups are very happy. Unhappy campers – we know you’re out there – haven’t spoken up yet. Happy Bakers Among the happy campers was America’s Baking industry. The American Bakers Association celebrated with a press […]

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 […]

What Presidential Checkups Tell Us About Self-Reports

February 13, 2019 — Our president just had his annual medical exam and that ritual is providing us an important reminder. Self-reports – especially about obesity, nutrition, and physical activity – are not very reliable. That’s because most people misremember or shade the truth. We’re all lighter, taller, eating healthier, and more active when we do the reporting ourselves. A Long […]

A Huge, Impossible Problem with Enemies All Around

January 28, 2019 — Bummer. The Lancet Obesity Commission report is out today and if you thought that obesity might be a tough problem to solve, you really have no clue. It’s bigger than you ever thought. It’s not just an epidemic. Not even calling it a pandemic is big enough. It’s a syndemic. A huge, impossible problem. It’s […]

Dietary Harmony in Canada – Naturally

January 24, 2019 — In the U.S., we’re gearing up for a big political fight over dietary guidelines. But in Canada, they’ve got new guidelines and the story is very different. Dietary harmony best describes the reaction to Canada’s new Food Guide. Canada has an enduring reputation for extreme politeness, so we’re not surprised. An Alternative to Food Fights […]