Some of my friends will tell you I'm insufferable in my certainties (hi, Ron; hi, honey), and they are certainly not reacting to nothing. That's only worth mentioning because I'm not sure if Food Tank, a food policy think tank on the verge of launch, is going to make any difference in the world. So far, there's a website and the following video, which strikes the right notes, if little more. I can't say I even know what "more" there should be, only that that was my reaction.
My friend Ron, the only reader of this blog whose keen eye for information and generosity for sharing has resulted in his own category, has passed along an Atlantic.com squib that says that Americans use a billion “extra” gallons of gasoline a year because of obesity.
And I say, whatever. By this snidery, I don’t mean to say I don’t believe it; more so, my reaction is yadda yadda yadda. Yes, I am a wordsmith; it even says so on one of my business cards.
I was conversing the other day with my autodidact pal, Ron, when we stuck on a point about eating: He considers "food addiction" and "compulsive eating" to be the same thing, and I don't.
My voracious reading friend, Ron, points toward this morning's squib from Jane Brody of the Times on the public health consequences of the continued rise of obesity in America: By 2020, demographers say, three out of four Americans will be obese or overweight, ands that by 2030, there will be 65 million more in those categories than there were last year.
Though certainly, the current proportion of two out of three is horrendous enough, she says:
I enjoy columnist Alex Beam's writing in the Boston Globe, perhaps more than any other writer there. To me, he has long been a reason to buy the paper (though still, I read it for free online, and was doing so long before I left the paper's employ almost four years ago).
One facet of my enjoyment is his consistent curmudgeonry, though I suspect that in his case, it's congenital. So often, he infuses his countercultural positions with a credibility I'm surprised to see.
The problem with studies, especially around food and nutrition, is that so many have contradicted other studies from over the years that no one knows what to believe.
A host for an amalgam of science bloggers is in trouble with some of its writers because it agreed to "host a blog sponsored by Pepsi where the soft drink company's employees would write about nutrition," according to a news site at nature.com.
A study at the University of Pittsburgh found evidence of binge eating in youngsters, leading its authors to argue that the condition should be accounted for in weight-management programs designed for severely overweight kids.
"Children in the Binge Eating Group were younger and had more depressive, anxiety, and eating-disorder symptoms, and lower self-esteem," the study found.
My good friend and good reader, Ron, whom I wish would leave comments, rather than replying by e-mail, questioned one of yesterday's posts:
Your recent post about fat addiction would seem to be saying, in essence, that we don't need another scientific study making a link between food and addictive behavior. I couldn't help but note the irony caused by your previous post, which shows we are still trying to convince psychiatrists of that very fact.
Tom Friedman's column yesterday was filed from Costa Rica, perhaps the globe's best example of how to prosper without exploiting native resources.
You're no doubt familiar with Costa Rica's many wonders, both natural and governmental. In a country roughly the size of West Virginia, it has rainforest, an active volcano, and both Caribbean and Pacific shores. It has decades of stable, democratic leadership, a literacy rate above 90 percent, and protects more than a quarter of its land for conservation.