Coffee break at the European Obesity Summit


People at obesity conferences are still clueless about their own subject. Here’s another example, from the recent European Obesity Summit (source).

Vanilla donuts? At an obesity conference? In what way is that different from handing out cigarettes at a cancer conference?

The worst thing is that this is par for the course. Most obesity experts are simply clueless about the true causes of obesity. Because a calorie is not a calorie. And eating vanilla donuts is not the same thing as eating broccoli.

Here are a few earlier, even scarier, examples of ignorance:



Why the First Law of Thermodynamics Is Utterly Irrelevant


  1. Apicius
    I wonder what would happen if you replace the tray of donuts with a tray of bacon strips. Will it raise eyebrows at the conference?
  2. Tom
    It's completely different! You can eat a doughnut but not be obese. If you smoke cigarettes it's bad for you irregardless. A balanced diet can include all kinds of unhealthy treats. I don't see why an obesity conference should eat carrot sticks and water. Obese people maybe should but a healthy person with a normal BMI can have whatever they like in moderation.
    Reply: #3
  3. bill

    You're posting on this website...why?

  4. Tom
    I don't realise there was the internet version of a dress code.
    Reply: #6
  5. Derek
    Tom, c'mon even one donut is unhealthy.
  6. bill
    Saying obese people should eat carrot sticks
    and water and then saying a healthy person
    can eat whatever they like in moderation
    shows you haven't even glanced at the
    information on this site.
  7. Tom
    Haha. I was being flippant but I still fail to see the problem with one of the snacks being available being doughnuts. They are not healthy Derek says and that is true if you mean they are full of fat and sugar. However lots of things are bad for you unless you eat them in moderation and as part of a balanced diet. All sizes of people should eat in moderation and in a balanced way. I apologise for not making that clear.
    Replies: #8, #10
  8. bill
    "...moderation..." "...balanced diet..."

    Purposely clueless?

    Reply: #15
  9. Tracey
    For many people the word MODERATION does not exist... If it did then millions of people would not be obese. And I they followed the moderation lifestyle they would not be overweight. For a person like me who was a former Binge Eater moderation did not work for me. And those people who are attending the Obesity Conference are not there to tell their story of overcoming obesity but to get answers from "Experts" on how to work past it.... But they serve them donuts????? That's ridiculous..... I'm happy to hear that many people can eat high carb high sugar foods in "moderation" and be healthy but sadly enough the 60% of Americans that are overweight and obese can not say the same thing!
    Reply: #12
  10. Apicius
    Tom, what a fantastic idea, to serve donuts at an obesity conference. Yes, indeed, that is brilliant. After hours of seminars of deleterious global eating trends, harmful physiological effects of junk food on hormones, fast food purchases encourage by families living in economic deprivation, Big Food taking over the grocery store with packaged Frankenstein foods and displacing real food from local farmers, the ever-changing food labelling laws that never seem to get it right, and etc and so on...Certainly, after all that heady information, the best reprieve would be a serving of a plate full of jelly-filled donuts covered in sugar dust. If I were at a conference focusing on tobacco & lung health, certainly I would love to go out for a puff after looking at depressing death statistics and the photos of black, cancer-infused lungs. All in moderation indeed!
    Reply: #14
  11. Judith
    Tom, I understand what you are saying. I thought the same way for years. As I began to recognize that I could NOT just eat one donut or 1 piece of candy or 1 of any high carb food without eating it all; the whole box or bag and then keep on looking for more. I realize food was controlling me. Maybe you are one of those fortunate people that can totally control what you put in your mouth and how your body responds to it. If that's you, congratulations. I have a feeling that's not you because you have looked at this website. My metabolism is different than people who can control their eating. Every individual has a different body chemistry. Look at the stats. THE USDA FOOD PYRAMID IS NOT WORKING. People are getting fatter and sicker at hyperspeed. The analogy is: what if this were a "lactose intolerance conference" and they served ice cream and yogurt for snacks. It's really not rocket science.
    Reply: #13
  12. Tom
    The conference isn't for obese people to learn how to overcome that challenge. It's a scientific conference for experts to present research, attend talks and network.
  13. Tom
    Judith I appreciate your post but the analogy is not correct. This is not a conference for obese people. It's a scientific conference for experts in the field.
  14. Tom
    Apicius, you don't know what else is on offer. The picture doesn't show if there's a table overflowing with fruit beside the doughnuts. The smoking analogy doesn't work. It's not the same thing.
    Reply: #17
  15. Tom
    I'm not clueless I assure you. We obviously disagree.
    Reply: #16
  16. Tor H
    This qoute of yours says you kinda is: "Obese people maybe should but a healthy person with a normal BMI can have whatever they like in moderation."

    Everything in moderation is lousy advice and when one knows how the body works completely useless. Its only function is to serve as an excuse for junkfood companies.

    Reply: #18
  17. Apicius
    Yes, of course Tom. Thank you for yet again more of your genius brilliance. Yes, indeed, there may have been a stack of fruit next to the stack of donuts. Of course, silly me, the stack of sugary fruit would indeed cancel the negative effects of the sugar in the jelly-filled, sugar dusted donuts. And you know what, maybe there could have been a stack if broccoli next to the sugary fruit and sugary donuts, and then that would make everything ok...because according to your logic (which is brilliant indeed), a positive thing would cancel out a negative thing.
    Reply: #19
  18. Tom
    Hi Tor H. I do know how the body works. The comments section under a small non-story isn't the place to write in full, but moderation as part of advice is not lousy advice. I'm no fan of junk food companies companies!
    Reply: #20
  19. Tom
    I'm sorry you're so angry. You appear to be wilfully trying to make this a big deal. I was not suggesting you can eat a carrot to negate the affect of eating a doughnut! If only you could!

    I was suggesting there might be a range of choices.

    Replies: #21, #22
  20. Tor H

    Hi Tor H. I do know how the body works. The comments section under a small non-story isn't the place to write in full, but moderation as part of advice is not lousy advice. I'm no fan of junk food companies companies!

    Great, then you know why it's so hard to actually gain weight if one overeats LCHF.
    But so easy to gain weight eating the same amount of calories of junkfood.

  21. Apicius
    Me angry? Haha. Quite the opposite. So deliriously happy to be led by geniuses like you. And now I learn that you permit me to eat carrots. Oh joy. You are so full of gifts and wisdom!
    Reply: #24
  22. Clayton
    Tom, you must realize your reasoning, backtracking and excuses for the shamefully delivered results of the offering fall on deaf but educated ears... Right?
    Reply: #25
  23. Freda
    I do wonder why Tom is posting at all, here. The last person I saw making these types of comments was a dietician on David Gillespie's blog page........he was a dietician working for Nestle.
    Oh, in case you don't know, David Gillespie wrote "Sweet Poison" and "Toxic Oils" and the food companies hate him.
    Reply: #26
  24. Tom
    Apicius, I didn't realise I was leading you. I certainly was not either giving permission or denying you anything. I'm not clear how you have been able to confidently ascertain my intelligence level from a comments section but perhaps you have more experience of them than me.
  25. Tom
    Clayton, I'm not backtracking at all. I stand by the fact that I believe this story is a mountain out of a molehill. A scientific conference attended by doctors and other healthcare experts has, amongst the possible food on offer, some doughnuts. It's not a MacDonald's sponsored food stand. We've seen no evidence the lunch option was deepfried everything with no other choice. It is not equivalent to cigarettes being handed out at a lung cancer conference.

    The ears do not appear to be too deaf that then pen a reply. I can assure you my ears have had a fair education themselves! I do agree that my comments fall on ears that are unlikely to change their opinion.

    Reply: #27
  26. Tom
    Freda, I'm only posting here as I was led to this posting from a twitter post from a friend of mine and wanted to see if there was any further detail or explanation. I'm not a food company stooge I assure you. As people have replied to my initial comment I felt it was only courteous to reply to them. Other than some sarcastic digs at my intelligence (which I'm intelligent enough to be untroubled by) everyone has been polite.
  27. Clayton
    Tom... I made no made mention of a comparison towards cigarettes. I agree the comparison others have made does stand on shaky ground. My concern and maybe others is that these so called "health EXPERTS" and let's not forget the "Doctors", who then preach a certain approach to health and well being and then subject the attendees to the opposite. That is the concern, that is the dismay, and that is the reason why you are being questioned by others regarding your position on this blog and your motives. Maybe this is benine and maybe it is not, but that really doesn't matter in this discussion, what should matter is etiquette, compassion and caring.
    Additionally... just because a person has a deaf ear towards untruth, does not mean it is not heard and rightfully deserves a response. And no... It's was not just a "typical scientist conference" as you say, there was a purpose, topic and agenda, so again please don't sidetrack the overall topic.
    I hope you gain some insight and can some how understand, not everyone sees things your way.
  28. Kathy
    Tom, you are missing the point of this website, and therefore of this article. I would encourage you to read the site which is directed towards weight loss through strict moderation of carbs and lowering the insulin response as treatment for obesity. High sugar and refined flour content foods are totally restricted in this way of treating obesity and diabetes, as are even naturally sweet fruit and even carrots. It's a way of eating focused around insulin regulating protein and very slow acting complex carbs. Despite the years of attack against Atkins, many have been proving the basis of his diet to be correct and healthy for people who struggle with insulin resistance, diabetes and obesity. The article is addressing the irony of this kind of diet at an Obesity Conference for professionals in this field, when so many of us have experienced the reality of how poorly we have been served by the obesity experts and the apparent lack of understanding of current research showing harmful effects of a high fat, high carb diet. Obesity is a metabolic disorder that responds well to a treatment program that relies on whole foods and insulin regulating proteins and complex carbohydrates. The problem is that eggs, meat and cheese is more expensive and inconvenient to serve than donuts and muffins, therefore we face sugary snacks, an occasional fruit and carrot/celery tray thrown in (and call this balanced and healthy) everywhere in our culture. I have learned to either fast or take my own food to these events so that I can avoid the highly refined, high carb foods generally served.
  29. fitartist
    Everyone's idea of "moderation" can also fluctuate greatly!
    And I have to say that eating donuts is similar t me like crack is to an addict. Just
    T one donut us all it takes to start my downward spiral.
    Just say NO to all donuts. Period!
  30. Shannon
    Cigarettes freely offered at a lung cancer research conference because "choice", and "maybe they are also offering nicorrete gum and we just don't see it, but we should assume it is there" and "they are just scientists researching lung cancer, they don't actually have it".
  31. Diane
    What does 'moderation' mean? It and the term 'balanced diet' are such meaningless sayings. Is it ok to have a donut once a day, once a week or once a month? How do people respond to the idea of eating junk food in moderation? Is it ok to have the donut and then have a big mac, fries and a soda once a week? Is that still 'moderation'? Does anyone know? That's the problem with the term 'moderation'. It's a cover all clause to allow people to indulge in these foods whenever the want to without feeling bad, because a little bit of what you fancy does no harm right? But who is actually counting how much and how often they're eating donuts etc in 'moderation'? Truth is, donuts are not food, contain no needed nutrients, are harmful to health and actually have NO place in a healthy diet, none at all. They shouldn't be there. Healthy eating advice should state that sugar filled junk foods are not healthy and it's best not to eat them. 'Moderation' is just appeasing the junk food industry - it has nothing to do with health.

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