Public Health

Urban elites tend to think being fat and dumb is a rural problem but studies show just the opposite; that is why so many health planners want to add more parks and places for people to walk, it emulates country life more.

Genetics are somewhat important, it impacts how many calories someone can eat given their metabolism, but social environment is a big factor. Since agricultural science has made it possible for poor people be fat, that is exactly what has happened, and not just in America. Obesity has risen dramatically in Europe as well. 


When government pays for your health care, they get the right to tell you what behavior can be detrimental to your health - but before that they will pay for medication to help them stop smoking.

But only 10 percent are doing so. Why?

 Smoking is the leading cause of preventable disease in the United States and it puts a particularly heavy burden on Medicaid. One-third of US adults with Medicaid coverage currently smoke, a rate that is roughly twice as high as that for the general public.


It won't surprise you to learn that people have different metabolisms and body types. Some people can eat a lot and stay thin, others have to struggle to keep pounds off.

While there is no "obesity" gene, it is the time of year when epidemiologists talk about it anyway. One such gene that has been causalated to obesity is FTO and a new paper suggest a physically active lifestyle can change that genetic determinism. 

Yes, if you exercise and burn more calories, you will lose weight.


America has led the way in achieving something that was once believed to be science fiction: For the first time in history, poor people can afford to be fat. 


In the spirit of year end top 10 lists, but not restricting myself to 2015, I offer the following as the best 10 books ever written on the topic of obesity and/or weight loss.

1. Good Calories, Bad Calories, by Gary Taubes


“Is my cholesterol too high?” may become an irrelevant question.

There was a time when the total cholesterol number rising above 240 meant that you had a simple condition called “high cholesterol” and that avoiding fat and perhaps taking medication could reduce your “cholesterol” level the blood. If you did this, you could avoid a heart attack. Cholesterol was described as a fatty molecule that clogged arteries in the heart and having too much of it made heart attacks and strokes more likely. This "plumbing" analogy made sense to almost everyone, so we proceeded to eat low fat diets and started taking Lipitor.
Did it help?
In order to save you-all the trouble of poring over the 2000 page Omnibus Budget bill passed last week, let me point out some of its issue of concern:
Introduction: A covert alliance forged of mutual interest has declared victory after the recently-concluded Paris climate conclave issued its final accord, garnering almost 200 national signatories. Do they have reason to celebrate — or are their gleeful press statements meant to cover up the real shortfalls of this agreement? 

When used properly, car seats can reduce the risk of infant death and injury by 71% but a new study in The Journal of Pediatrics found that most families with newborns made at least one serious error in the use and installation of their car safety seat. In 2013, car accidents resulted in approximately 8,500 infants requiring hospitalization or emergency department visits and 135 deaths.  


Not content with blathering about the politics of soda and the urgent need to label GMO-containing food to protect America's consumers from science, Prof. M.