Posts Tagged ‘public discourse’

Looking for Black and White Answers in a World of Gray

April 22, 2024 — Virginia Sole-Smith has black and white answers for the world of gray nuances that define the relationship of nutrition, obesity, and health. She is an outspoken advocate for fat acceptance and body liberation. Restraint is something she rejects. In a very personal profile for the New York Times, Lisa Miller describes her as both inspirational […]

The Tension Between Cynicism, Skepticism, and Pragmatism

February 25, 2024 — Are we cynical? We can surely find excuses to be. Examples of cynicism pop up at every glance. Certainly we see it in politics and public policy. Closer to home at ConscienHealth, people routinely find reasons for cynicism about all kinds of medical research and advice – especially nutrition and obesity. This is a real […]

Human Diversity, Identity, and Disease

November 19, 2023 — “I am.” These two words define so many struggles we face in public discourse today. People define their own identities in diverse ways and fiercely defend them. Disparage a person’s identity and you are attacking them. What follows is not gentle, rational, or easily calmed. Right now, we see how potent it is in public […]

Cutting Salt “Works as Well” as Blood Pressure Medicines?

November 14, 2023 — Please. We don’t need fake controversies and false comparative claims. But in reporting on an excellent new study of the effects of cutting salt on blood pressure, we’re getting a little bit of both. The study that is generating this frenzy simply doesn’t line up with the headlines that reporters are spinning out of it. […]

An End to Blathering About Obesity? Nope!

September 7, 2023 — The Wegovy brand of semaglutide has finally come to the UK this week – albeit in limited quantities. So in the Guardian, Zoe Williams wonders if this will mean the end to blathering about obesity: “Despite this being a breakthrough, it is going to pose an immense challenge to those, in medicine and beyond, who […]

Weight Loss Commerce or Obesity Care?

April 16, 2023 — The availability of advanced medicines for obesity presents a dilemma. On one hand, people are accustomed to both patronizing and disparaging a diverse industry devoted to helping people lose weight. It ranges from the obvious frauds of dietary supplements that promise to help people lose weight quickly and permanently to behavioral support programs like Weight […]

Three Threads in Public Discourse on Obesity

March 10, 2023 — Anyone who doesn’t think a major shift in public perceptions about obesity is not underway has simply not been paying attention. Public discourse about this complex chronic disease is more intense (albeit sometimes frustrating) than we have seen in more than two decades of work on obesity. We see a pattern of three threads in […]

World Obesity Day: Perspectives and Evidence

March 4, 2023 — Today – World Obesity Day – is all about changing perspectives. The World Obesity Federation deserves credit for a well-chosen theme, because in the face of much new evidence about obesity, old perspectives are crashing into newer ones driven by evidence and science. Research has brought us new options for treating obesity more safely and […]

Truth and Fiction from Health at Every Size

February 10, 2023 — We are in the midst of a fundamental change in the understanding of obesity. Years of hand-wringing – with urgent calls to eat less and move more – promoted weight stigma more than it reduced obesity prevalence. To counter this, the trademarked Health at Every Size (HAES) movement rose up to call out the mistake […]

The Utility of Terror for Decisions on Child Health

January 27, 2023 — We count on newspapers for coming up with sensational headlines to inflame passions. Opinion pages seldom disappoint. But those flames of passion very often bring more heat than light. Such was the case yesterday when the New York Times published a sensational headline for an opinion article by a HAES activist, Virginia Sole-Smith. She wants […]