Sea of Noise

Tue, 12 Jul 2005

A Modest Proposal

Think it would be strange to give your newborn son a labectomy? Me, too.

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Sat, 24 Jul 2004

Has the Atkins Fad Peaked?

I don't know about you, but if I hear the phrase "low-carb" one more time, I'll probably go postal. Mercifully, this fad may have peaked. Check out the summary at metafilter.

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The Obesity Myth

"It takes a brave man to speak out in favor of flab today . . ."

What happens in these kind of cultural processes is that cosmetic preferences get medicalized and then moralized. So it's not only that we like thinness because it is fashionable but it becomes that thinness is actually good for health. And what's more, if we're not thin, it's our fault and we're bad people. It becomes a moral good.
That process has been going on in the United States for about 75 years and it's produced the current moral hysteria.

. . .

Medicine, especially public health, is a highly politicized discourse. To take the word of the Center of Disease Control or the National Institute of Health on weight without skepticism or any further investigation is equivalent of taking the word of the [Office of National Drug Control Policy] on whether marijuana is bad for you.

[via disinfo]

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Sat, 17 Jul 2004

Cough Syrup No Better Than Placebo

A new study finds that over-the-counter cough syrups may be no more effective than a placebo. [via disinfo]

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Tue, 13 Jul 2004

Artificial Sweeteners May Disrupt Body's Ability to Count Calories

Psychologists at Purdue University may have unconvered a new clue to the growing obesity problem: artificial sweeteners may interfere with the body's mechanisms for tracking calorie consumption and regulating hunger:

"Historically, we knew that our body learns that if the food is thick, such as whole milk, it tends to have more calories than compared to a thinner liquid such as skim milk," Swithers said. "Now, our research reinforces this and takes it one step further, showing that our bodies translate this information about perceived calories into a gauge to tell us when to stop eating."

Although their conclusions are based on studies of rats, they suggest that consuming diet soda and other foods sweetened artificially, as well as the increased consumption of hgih-calorie beverages, may be part of the problem.

[via boingboing]

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