Archive | Weight Loss

Obesity Rate at New Record High in the U.S.

The number of obese U.S. adults rose to a new record high of 27.7% in 2014, according to Gallup. They rely on self-reported weight, which means that the reality is probably even worse.

Americans have quite a challenge to turn this around. Having just spent some time in the U.S. myself it’s clear that the food environment is simply awful. Plenty of bad (and high-carb) choices available anywhere at any time, while it’s much more of a challenge to find good options.

Add in the massive misinformation about the “dangers” of eating natural fat and the misguided fixation on calories and staying thin is truly a challenge.

Gallup: U.S. Obesity Rate Inches Up to 27.7% in 2014

As a contrast, in Sweden, where LCHF diets have been massively popular during the last seven years, the obesity rate has stopped increasing and may even be going down. Hopefully we can spread some of that magic around the world.

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The Big Fat Surprise

Does butter, meat and cheese belong in a healthy diet? And if so, how come we’ve been told the opposite for decades?

Here’s my recent interview with NYT bestselling author Nina Teicholz. Her book “The Big Fat Surprise” was called one of the best books of last year by publications like The Economist and The Wall Street Journal.

It’s a fascinating story. You can watch the first six minutes of our interview above.

Full Interview and More

If you want to watch the full longer interview – and a follow-up interview on the unintended and unfortunate dangers of new vegetable oils – they’re available on the membership site (free trial one month).

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Obesity is “Exploding” in Europe, Except in This Country

Obesity in Sweden

Yesterday saw some frightening headlines about obesity being about to “explode” in Europe.

The headlines are based on a new WHO report on the spread of obesity in Europe. Sweden – my country – is among the leanest of European countries today, with 14 percent of the population classified as “obese”.  But the report predicts a major increase in obesity over the next two decades, to 26 percent.

The big problem is that the report is apparently based on the situation in 2010 (five years ago!!) for the prognosis. Perhaps this is because it’s difficult to find reliable newer statistics for all European countries.

However, something seems to have happened in Sweden in the last five years. Look at the numbers in the graph above, the blue line is from official Swedish statistics, the red line is the WHO projection from the 2010 numbers.

Something seems to have happened. As if by pure coincidence the obesity epidemic took off in Sweden by the end of the 80s, with the fear of fat. Our national low-fat labeling was adopted in 1989 and seems to mark the beginning of the obesity epidemic.

In recent years, as butter sales have broken records and LCHF has been by far the most popular weight loss method that Swedes have turned to – since then the obesity epidemic has slowed down. For the last two years the numbers are actually going down.

We can’t say anything certain about the cause of these figures. But it’s clear that WHO’s prognosis is already outdated when it comes to developments in Sweden. Something has happened in the last five years.

It will be exciting to see what the future holds. Will Sweden be the first country to reverse the obesity epidemic? If so, who will follow?

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Sugar-Fighting Doctor Gets Censored?

Dr. Aseem Malhotra

The fantastic Dr. Aseem Malhotra was on Australia’s Lateline show recently. He keeps up the brave fight against the disinformation from Big Sugar about “balanced diets” and exercise. There is zero need for added sugar in a balanced diet.

Lateline: Cardiologist says sugar and carbs are the main cause of rising obesity rates

Dr. Malhotra may soon take the title of Big Sugar’s enemy #1 from Professor Robert Lustig.

At the same time, Dr. Malhotra’s recent paper – the one saying that “you cannot outrun a bad diet” – that started his publicity tour seems to have been censored. It’s “temporarily removed following an expression of concern”.

I wonder who is “concerned”. Who could possibly be concerned about telling people the truth about the dangers of junk food?

Earlier

Let’s Stop Lying About Physical Activity and Obesity

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The Beginning and End of the Fear of Fat

 
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This is the book that contributes to finally dismissing the old fear of fat. When the book The Big Fat Surprise came out in June last year, major American newspapers praised it. It has become a New York Times  best seller and The Wall Street Journal appointed it one of the best books of the year.

This book redefines food for many influential people and the fear of fat is losing its grip on the world.

Finally, I too have read the book. It’s a big book that initially is very similar to the fantastic Good Calories, Bad Calories (2007). But once you’ve read the first chapters you realize that this book is so much more. It’s an updated version with a somewhat different focus – and for most readers probably far more entertaining, clarifying and upsetting.

This is the definitive story on how fear of fat was based on how ambitious researchers and well-meaning politicians took short cuts and ignored the lack of real evidence. And as gigantic economic interests entered the picture things went very wrong.

The Problem with Fear of Fat

We know the result: instead of harmless fat – that we’ve been unnecessarily afraid of – people began to eat more sugar, wheat flour and other refined carbohydrates, which increase the fat-storing hormone insulin. Voilá: an epidemic of obesity and diabetes.

The book also goes in detail through the tragicomic and terrifying hunt for a replacement for natural saturated fat. Continue Reading →

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Elevator Ban in Fight Against the Obesity Epidemic – Seriously!

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The desparation is spreading. In Turkey a ban on using the elevator is now introduced to curb the obesity epidemic in the population:

Daily Sabah: Governor takes on elevators in fight against obesity

So far the ban only applies to public buildings in a province in Turkey – and if you want to go beyond the third floor this is apparently ok. There are also exemptions for nursing homes and people who for health reasons can’t climb stairs.

I wonder if you need a doctor’s note to take the elevator and who is going to monitor this? And what about strollers, should they too take the stairs?

The Elevator Act will hardly be a success. Of course it’s good to move, but unfortunately it doesn’t have any major impact on weight. Similar laws will produce a lot of hassle but hardly any positive effect. You also add to the old prejudices against people with weight problems.

The same governor has previously ordered that coffeehouses serve tea with only one sugar cube instead of two. This is a step in the right direction but it fails to adress the truly massive problem.

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If you’re going to have an impact on the obesity epidemic through legislation you need to start at the right place.

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Do You Want to Watch the Excellent Obesity Documentary FED UP?

This spring I wrote about this exciting documentary, FED UP. Just from watching the trailer it was clear that this would be something extra. A documentary about the obesity epidemic, of highest quality, that doesn’t just put the blame on a lack of calorie counting and willpower in sick people (something that’s just sickening).

The documentary screened in theaters in the US during the summer and received consistently excellent reviews. It hasn’t shown in Sweden, but a couple of days ago it was released on DVD and finally I had a chance to watch it.

The movie is excellent and goes further than other previous major productions. It completely dismisses the sugar industry’s favorite idea that obesity just depends on calories. Instead, the blame is clearly put on the real culprit: sugar and addictive junk food.

Here’s the movie’s strengths… and its fatal weakness: Continue Reading →

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