Academic food fight

Remember the days of the Miller Light commercials with various ex-athletes screaming “Less Filling” versus “Tastes Great” at each other. Academic researchers in nutrition are no different. The latest example of this was a recent article in Cell Metabolism in which the authors state that their carefully controlled study demonstrates that you lose more fat… Read more »

Harvard moving closer to the Zone Diet after 20 years

The recent article by Smith et al in the 2015 issue of the American Journal of Clinical Nutrition tried to answer the question of primary prevention of weight gain (1). This is actually a germane question since most diet studies focus on overweight/obese individuals losing weight after years of gaining weight.  Thus this new article… Read more »

U.S. News study is flawed

Sometimes I just have to roll my eyes when I hear about nutritional experts rating diets. The reason is that apparently none of the “experts” actually reads the published data critically. Undoubtedly, one of the worst offenders is the annual U.S. News and World Report study on diets. After watching them year after year making… Read more »

Diets don’t work? Or does bad science generate bad data?

One of the problems with diets is their focus on weight loss, not improved health.  A recent study in Circulation states that it doesn’t matter what diet you follow for weight loss (1).  On the other hand, we have the American Heart Association diet, the American Cancer Association diet, and the American Diabetes Association diet. … Read more »

Trying to Make Science Out of Sausage

Epidemiology is the study of associations and not causality. It essentially began in 1854 when John Snow noticed that there seemed to be a higher concentration of cholera patients in a certain area in London during one of its many cholera epidemics in the 19th century. That’s an association. The real breakthrough for John Snow… Read more »

The Real Facts about Metabolically Healthy Obesity

One of great paradoxes of our obesity epidemic is that many obese individuals appear to be quite healthy. This makes the true believers in the Holy Grail of BMI as the standard for good health quite livid. They know in their hearts that obesity is a mortal sin. Early this year the Centers for Disease… Read more »

Anti-aging made easy

Anti-aging diets have been around since the 15th century, starting with the books written by Luigi Cornaro. Although I addressed the history of Luigi in my book The Anti-Aging Zone written more than a decade ago, it bears repeating. Finding himself near death at age 35, Luigi Cornaro went on a strict calorie-restricted diet consisting… Read more »

What’s in it for us?

In this day and age when we hear about selfish genes and winner-takes-all outcomes in evolution, it is refreshing to come across a scientific paper that redeems your faith in doing the right thing. In this case, there is strong support that being a giving person may let you potentially have a longer lifespan (1)…. Read more »

Omega-3 fatty acids and prostate cancer? Oh, really?

There was a recent publication suggesting that higher levels of omega-3 fatty acids are associated with a greater risk of prostate cancer 1. Of course, the immediate media response was to indicate that taking fish oil supplements is dangerous. Of course, let’s not forget, then, that eating fish must also be dangerous. Before letting the… Read more »