Michael's blog

The sugar diet

I fear no contradiction when I say that if you don’t act insanely around food, then you know someone who does. That shouldn’t even stir contention in a nation where 2 of every 3 adults — 145 million of us — are considered overweight (defined as a body/mass index of between 25 and 30) or obese (a BMI over 30).

Here’s a window on that insanity, cited by Diane Rohrbach of Seattle, program director of Food Addiction Recovery Education, during her presentation at the Promising Practices in Food Addiction conference last weekend in Houston: The Cookie Diet. This is an actual product.

Just listen to what they say

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New York is contemplating a penny-per-ounce tax on sugared drinks. Here's how New York City Mayor Michael Bloomberg justified his support to a state Senate committee:

“Today, more than half the residents of New York City, and nearly 40 percent of our public school students, are overweight, many of them seriously so. That puts them dangerously on track to contracting diabetes, high blood pressure, heart disease, asthma, depression, and other serious health problems later in their lives.

Fat as a partisan issue

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A study in the Journal of the American Medical Society, reviewing CDC figures, says that obesity has leveled off. Though it's based on data I accept as credible, I do have to say that what I see at the mall, at a ballgame, or at the airport, I still see a lot of overweight people. Maybe I'm just looking for them, based on my sensitivities.

But what made me want to comment is this:

But for the Democracy Institute, a free market think tank, the new data in the JAMA exposes the myth of the obesity epidemic.

Public appearance

The second annual conference on "Promising Practices in Food Addiction Recovery" will be at the end of the month in Houston. The focus this year will be on assessment — refining how the standards measures of addiction can be recognized in problem eaters.

Sponsors include Kay Sheppard, Renaissance Nutrition Center, Turning Point of Tampa, Shades of Hope Treatment Center of Texas, Milestones Eating Disorders Program of Miami, and ACORN Food Dependency Recovery Services of Sarasota. Essentially, these are the, uh, heavyweights of food addiction treatment.

Eating trends

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Yeah, OK, so I've been MIA forever, and probably, that's likely to continue. Georgie's family leave ends today, and I'll be finally taking on the full reality of what I set out to do when I left the Globe almost three years ago — be the full-time caregiver for my child. (His name is Joe; you can view photos here if you want.)

Ready to act up

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"This has been a true expression of the deep sense of betrayal many [blanks] feel about [blank]'s lack of effective action on climate change," said Georgina Woods, spokesperson for the demonstration. "We voted for this government so they would stand up to the big polluters, and lead the world on dealing with the impending climate crisis."

"Instead, [blank] has perfected a marvellous line in greenwash, the polluters are getting taxpayer handouts and under the legislation currently before the Senate, [blank] will not have to cut domestic emissions one jot."

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