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HealthNotDiets Digest, Issue 11, 2018

March 11-17, 2018

As always, if you like what you read here, please support the original author by liking/sharing/following/up-voting/subscribing directly to their feed.

Happy reading!


Articles and Blogs

Food Values vs. Food Rules

by Adina Pearson

"If food has been a struggle for you, if you’ve lost trust in your ability to eat well, food rules can make you feel safe. Temporarily. Just like diets, though, soon they become burdensome and difficult to manage”


The Secret to a Longer Life? Don’t Ask These Dead Longevity Researchers

by Pagan Kennedy

“My travels in the obituary section convinced me that the more esoteric personal choices — and diets based on the latest scientific findings — have far less of an effect on our own health than we may think.”


My body positive social media strategy

by Ivy Felicia

"social media does not have to be a negative force in our lives. It can be a tool that we use for our good and the good of others.”


My Doctor Fat-Shamed Me — And I’m Not the Only One

by Marie Southard Ospina

"Before jumping into an automatic conversation about weight...doctors “can ask discuss what [a patient’s] experience of living in a larger body has been like, [if] they are engaging in harmful behaviors (i.e. dieting or other risk behaviors).”


The town that’s found a potent cure for illness – community by George Monbiot

“...when isolated people who have health problems are supported by community groups and volunteers, the number of emergency admissions to hospital falls spectacularly.”


15 Charming Illustrations That Fight Fatphobia With Doodles And Flowers

by Alanna Vagianos

“In her illustrated series called "Glorifying Obesity," the [artist, Rachele Cateyes] expresses how she feels about those who shame, harass and bully obese people for being fat.”


When self love isn’t enough.

by Your Fat Friend

“As a fat person, when I make a request of you, self love is not what I’m asking for. I’m asking for your help. I’m asking for your action. And in that, my self love is necessary, but never sufficient. I need you.”


Post partum body shame

by Carla Korn

"Even though you’re undergoing a major life transition and are attempting to care for this tiny human you’ve created, the expectation seems so clear, yet totally unrealistic."



by Susan Stinson

“I want to speak plainly as a gift to the other fat, halt, and aging among us, and for the young who can’t live within the stories the dominant culture tells on us. I fear being punished for not spending more of my life regretting my physical shape.”


Disordered Eating or Eating Disorder: What’s the Difference?

by Carrie Gottlieb

“Defining & recognizing disordered eating is [complicated]. How do you distinguish disordered eating from an actual eating disorder or even from more normative dieting behaviors? ...what can be done to treat these behaviors once they become a problem?”


The Cocktail Party Conundrum: Why Dietitians Don’t Always Tell You They’re Dietitians

by Mandy Unanski Enright

“when I tell someone I’m a dietitian, it has a tendency to open a rabbit hole. And not always one I’m thrilled to jump down....Otherwise my social time is over.”


Gun Culture And Wellness Culture Come From The Same Place

by Alan Levinovitz

“Economic and social injustice is a far greater threat to people’s health than medical error or malfeasance — just as it is by far the greatest risk factor in gun violence — but this does not fit neatly into an empowering epistemology”


You Don't Give a Damn About My Health Or Gabourey's: On Fatphobia and Faux Concern

by Creighton Leigh

“Weight loss isn’t every fat person’s goal. If you’re only concerned with fat bodies and how people are when they’re making efforts to lose weight, you’re fatphobic.”


How Carob Traumatized a Generation

by Jonathan Kauffman

“They taste not the similarities between the foods they are eating and the foods they really want to eat, only the thwarted desire for what is forbidden. No matter how much time passes, those objects of childhood dread are difficult to see anew.”


Research &

Clinical Practice

“Pursuing thinness is detrimental to women regardless of any dual muscular goals”

Uhlmann, Laura R., et al. "The fit beauty ideal: A healthy alternative to thinness or a wolf in sheep’s clothing?." Body image 25 (2018): 23-30


The Ethics of Helping Clients with Weight Loss in Psychotherapy

by Margit Berman

“Psychotherapy for weight loss is of limited efficacy, and raises ethical concerns for psychologists. Principles of beneficence, non-maleficence, integrity, justice, [&] ethical standards ...may all be threatened by psychotherapy for weight loss.”


“for those in midlife, Levine is finding that even if you haven't been an avid exerciser, getting in shape now may head off that decline and help restore your aging heart.”

Howden, Erin J., et al. "Reversing the Cardiac Effects of Sedentary Aging in Middle Age—A Randomized Controlled Trial: Implications For Heart Failure Prevention." Circulation (2018): -117.


“We need fair information. The risk of cancer from tobacco is [3-4 x] that of obesity... Combining the effect of eating more fruit and vegetables and less processed meat, for example, would easily outweigh the risk carried by obesity.”

McCartney, Margaret. "Margaret McCartney: Cancer patients should not be shamed." BMJ 360 (2018): k1139.


“As a key social consequence, many women compare themselves to the mythical [average US woman]...smaller clothing size...may be desirable, [but] it is not is imperative that our society considers the veracity of the true size of humanity.”

Christel, Deborah A., and Susan C. Dunn. "Average American women’s clothing size: comparing National Health and Nutritional Examination Surveys (1988–2010) to ASTM International Misses & Women’s Plus Size clothing." International Journal of Fashion Design, Technology and Education 10.2 (2017): 129-136.



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A mistake I see made again and again by my colleagues and others is the assumption that people in larger bodies eat more than people in smaller bodies. Here's a study to show that that belief is not true when looking at a diverse group of people. This study is also useful in that it neatly shows the variation of energy intake between individuals - we can see this in the standard deviations from the average energy intakes being between 400-500 calories for women and 700-900 calories for men. That's a gigantic range (remember that the standard deviation, SD, describes the amount above and below the mean (average) into which about 70% of the people in the study fit) and which needs to still be considered 'normal' variation between individuals. So using the SDs to look at the range in 'normal' energy intakes, for adult men in the 'healthy' weight range, 95% of the men had energy intakes between 1025 and 3845 cals/day, and 68% had energy intakes between 1730 and 3143 cals/day. This was not any different from the average and ranges in the 'overweight' and 'obese' categories. When the calories per kg are calculated, larger people are eating significantly less per kilo than smaller people. Take home points: Myth busted! Larger people do not (on average) eat more than smaller people, and there is considerable variation in every BMI group meaning that many smaller people are eating more than many larger people. Bonus point: It's obvious to see why the general 'calorie guidelines' are not useful as a public health message! Differences in correlates of energy balance in normal weight, overweight and obese adults. Drenowatz C, Jakicic JM, Blair SN, Hand GA.Obes Res Clin Pract. 2015 Nov-Dec


I’ve been reading loads of chatter and pushback about this stigmatizing campaign and I can’t believe I didn’t come across this until now (thank you random person on random Facebook thread 😜). I checked, and it’s real. CRUK gratefully received 10 million UK pounds from Slimming World a few months ago. Slimming World is a market leader in the commercial weight loss sector in the UK and stands to profit mightily by accepting the terror-bucks from the larger people that have been targeted by the campaign. Larger people need funding to flow to better screening and treatment for cancers, not sent towards expensive, temporary weight loss that is not even going to necessarily reduce the risk. The conflict of interest is utterly stunning 😡😡😡




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