Friday, September 27, 2013


Okay, yes.  I am going to come out and say that this is a good thing.
McDonalds is going to allow people to choose a salad or a vegetable in place of french fries in the value meals.
It is also going to stop promoting soda as a drink option in its happy meals (I wonder about other sugar sweetened beverages like juice and if they will only offer low fat milk, but its a start)

Is McDonalds the right place to do this?  Well, heck yeah.... its THE place to do it.  BTW, if McDonalds can let us substitute salad for fries, I hope the more 'upscale' restaurants will join in.  Actually, didn't I talk about this a year ago?

I am excited.  It has to start somewhere - and since the USA has the highest ratio of McDonalds restaurants per 1 million people in the WORLD - and the near highest obesity rate (I think USA is second) - McDonalds it is.  

I find this change more important than the one over at Burger King.  It is good that BK is thinking of ways to reduce calories in their items, but 270 calories is still a lot more than an 80 calorie salad (minus the high cal/high fat dressing of course)  

In my last blog, I wrote about a french fry burger and a bottomless bowl of pasta so I am calling this progress and leaving it at that.

Saturday, September 14, 2013

Is the Food Industry Promoting Obesity?

The US population has a high rate of obesity, perhaps the highest in the world (see the WHO and CDC obesity websites for the numbers).  The simplest explanation, the one without nuance, is that people are eating more calories than they need. The nuanced explanation involves all the reasons why we are consuming too many calories.  For example, one reason is that we don't know how many calories we need.  Another is that, even those who know their caloric needs, cannot reasonably (or accurately) estimate the amount of calories in the food and beverages available to them.  Still another, the food and beverages most readily available and heavily promoted are (ridiculously) high in calories.
So is the food industry a culprit?
I give you three reasons why I think the answer is yes, but note, I said a culprit not the culprit.  They are:

  1. The french fry burger
  2. Endless bowls of pasta
  3. And the Bacon Pepperoni pizza burger

 There are many factors that promote an over consumption of calories.  The cause will always involve an interaction between the person and his or her environment.  But really, does the environment have to be this over the top?  Cheap, calorically- dense, nutrient-poor food is much easier to access than it is to avoid.  That's a problem, but its one we CAN address.

Sunday, September 8, 2013

A blog post on weight loss worth a share

I read a post today and shared it on Facebook and twitter, but I really like it so I am going to share it here also.  
 I am familiar with the science and the scientists that this blogger refers to, and I trust her interpretation.

I want to add 3 things.

  • Exercise, as I say every chance I get, is essential for good health. One cannot live well without it - and just like medicine, it only works when you 'take it' and you should 'take it' every day.
  • Pay attention to tip number 5.  They are talking about Volumetrics and my personal style of eating (but they don't call it that or refer to me!!}.   Note that there is evidence that what you eat matters to your overall health, if not your waistline.
  • Remember, science is not about facts.  We observe, test, interpret and trust the evidence that we have today.  Someone can observe something different tomorrow.  Science is supposed to be a work in progress, and it is.
Review the post on weight loss tips that are supported by science written by Alice G. Walton HERE.

PS< I am still here!  My dissertation writing is the most insane hardest thing I may have ever done (to be fair, I collected and analyzed my own data  - twice (2 studies) (but can you believe I lack skill in making written arguments!)... anyways, I will be back, sporadically at first and more consistently in the future.