July 29, 2012 |
LONDON - Brendan Hansen is a U.S. Olympic swimmer not named Michael Phelps, Ryan Lochte or Missy Franklin. That means we don't have to think of him as superhuman or worry about an inflated ego. But then, if you'd met Martha Hansen, Brendan's wife, you'd pretty much dismiss the inflated ego possibility. By necessity, swimmers have bodies that are useful, beyond propelling their ripples through the ripples, as models for statues. Hansen's is right there. So, Mrs. Hansen, wife of the sculpted one, mother of their child due in early January, what happens if the ripples start to roll?
July 21, 2012 |
Why is it that we crave chocolate chip cookies rather than chard? Or bread instead of broccoli? Take heart: It's biological. "Our attraction to sweets - and salt, carbohydrates and fat - is hard-wired from the Stone Age," says Dr. David Katz, director of Yale University's Prevention Research Center. Back then, food cravings were reliable signals to our ancestors to seek out certain foods that would provide energy (sugar, fat) and essential minerals (salt). "Today, food is plentiful and it's easy to avoid physical activity, but we've preserved craving tendencies because evolution is very slow," Katz says.
July 19, 2012 |
A new way to measure and categorize an individual's body shape appears to predict more accurately whether he or she is in greater danger of premature death, says a pair of scientists in a new look at alternatives to the body-mass index (or BMI). The proposed new measure is called "A Body Shape Index," or ABSI, by the father-and-son team that has devised and tested it, Dr. Jesse Krakauer, an endocrinologist at Middletown Medical in Middletown N.Y., and his Nir Krakauer, an assistant professor of engineering at City University of New York.
July 16, 2012 |
So, the government tells you that you shouldn't eat trans fats. What do you do? Seek out the nutrient content of everything you eat to make sure no trans fats pass your lips? Not likely, if you're like most people. Maybe not so different from the dreary statistics about how many of us pile up enough servings of vegetables and fruit every day. So New York City had another idea. Get rid of the trans fats in its restaurants and then people won't have to decide - at least for those meals.
July 16, 2012 |
New York City's pioneering ban on all but the smallest amounts of trans fats in restaurant food has led to a significant reduction in consumption, a change that should translate into better cardiovascular health in the nation's largest city, according to a new report. It also demonstrates that coffee shops, fast-food joints and other eateries can play a major role in improving the health of the public, the study authors said. Officials from the New York City Department of Health and Mental Hygiene conducted the study to assess whether the regulation that took effect in 2008 - which prohibits all restaurants from serving food prepared with partially hydrogenated vegetable oil or dishes that contain more than 0.5 gram of trans fat per serving - was making a difference for diners.
June 28, 2012 |
Victory is sweet! On Thursday, the Supreme Court upheld the Patient Protection and Affordable Care Act and its individual mandate -- and (unofficially but thank you very much) my idea for a fat tax. Chief Justice John G. Roberts Jr. has decreed that the government can't make you buy something like insurance, but it can tax you if you refuse to buy something like, uh, insurance. DOCUMENT: Supreme Court ruling on healthcare law Which dovetails nicely with the argument I made Wednesday in favor of a tax on obese Americans.
June 27, 2012 |
If you want to eat foie gras in California before July 1, especially at a feast dedicated to the smooth, super-fatted duck liver, your pâté may be seasoned with a grain or two of political theater. Outside Santa Monica's Mélisse earlier this month, there were news trucks, a cordon of friendly police officers, protesters waving crumpled posters showing unhappy waterfowl and rumpled counter-protesters with their own propaganda fliers, dancing around the periphery like boxers waiting to get into the ring.
June 27, 2012 |
A calorie is a calorie is a calorie - or is it? Maybe not, a small study has found. Once the pounds are shed, the proportions of carbohydrates, proteins and fats you chow down on may determine whether you keep the weight off - or slowly but surely pack on pounds again. In an intensive, seven-month experiment during which 21 overweight men and women had their diets strictly controlled down to each last morsel, researchers showed that a traditional low-fat diet seemed to make the metabolism more sluggish than a high-protein one during the most difficult part of weight loss: keeping fat off once it's shed.
CALIFORNIA | LOCAL
June 20, 2012 |
Susan Tyrrell, an eccentric, husky-voiced character actress best known for her Oscar-nominated supporting role as a blowsy barfly in director John Huston's 1972 movie "Fat City," has died. She was 67. Tyrrell died Saturday at her home in Austin, Texas, according to the Travis County medical examiner. The cause of death was not yet known. The actress, whose many film credits included "Islands in the Stream" (1977), "Angel" (1984) and "Cry-Baby" (1990), already had played a number of colorful character roles on stage in New York before being cast in "Fat City," a boxing drama starring Stacy Keach and Jeff Bridges.
May 31, 2012 |
Points for trying. The Food and Drug Administration has rejected the Corn Refiners Assn.'s attempt to rename high-fructose corn syrup -- a leading suspect in the obesity epidemic -- as the more wholesome-sounding "corn sugar. " Michael Landa, the FDA's food safety chief, says the change would suggest "a solid, dried and crystallized sweetener obtained from corn," rather than a sticky-sweet syrup cooked up in a factory. High-fructose corn syrup has been widely used as a food sweetener since the late 1970s.