Time again for your weekly jaunt through the world of ED-related news that you may have missed. I hope you enjoy this week's selection of yummy morsels!
"Winning the War on Weight"
And so is titled a press release about a recent study out of Australia, which looked at what obese people thought about their ability to change their behaviors. From the press release:
"Severely obese individuals felt an urgent and desperate need to change their health behaviours, but felt completely powerless to do so. Most felt worried and scared about the potential health consequences of their weight. Most felt blamed and ashamed by public health and education campaigns about obesity, which did little to actually help them address their weight," Dr Thomas said.The take-home point? Shaming people about their weight doesn't work! (Whoda thunk?)
Dr Thomas said in contrast, people whose weight fell within the mild to moderately obese range understood they were significantly overweight but did not believe they needed to lose weight to improve their health and wellbeing.
"Those individuals, with a BMI between 30 and 40, believed they could lose weight if they needed to, but did not feel this was an urgent health priority as most felt physically healthy," Dr Thomas said.
"Most of the study participants in this category deliberately sought to distance themselves from public health messages about obesity and the word obesity because of the social stigma attached to the condition. They also stigmatised those who were fatter than themselves."
Maybe we could start to win the war on weight when we sit down and just stop fighting it.
Described by @WiredScience as "a beautiful visualization of disease chatter on Twitter," Health Tweeder is definitely pretty to look at and fun to play with. It's a fantastic time-waster. I know- you can thank me later.
Historic Cookbooks, 1900-1910
If you're interested in what people were cooking and how they were eating, this link is for you. All of the cookbooks are scanned and full-text.
The Skinny on Fat in Fiction
A brief but insightful overview of the use of fat characters in recent literature. Writes Beth Carswell:
In reality, people walk around in various shapes and sizes, and that's just the way it is. If they're fat, it's only one aspect of the things that make them up - who they are, and what they are. Their size is incidental, circumstantial, not the main focal point of them as a person. But in writing fiction, the author, playing a God of sorts, has to make decisions. It seems in describing someone's physical attributes, there is a reason to make them that way, and fat tends to carry the most connotations.Prefrontal brain function in children with anorexia nervosa
It appears that teens with anorexia are able to perform verbal tasks as well as their unaffected peers, but they use different neural patterns to arrive at their responses. The authors conclude that "might apply fewer brain circuits or fewer neurons per circuit during cognitive tasks and might use different brain circuits in relation to their preoccupation with eating behaviors." Whether this altered neural functioning is a result of the starvation arising from anorexia, or an underlying difference, remains to be seen.
Trends in ED hospitalization in Poland, 2003-2007
From the abstract (it's the only part of the article in English!):
Despite the increase in eating disorders prevalence rates in young people in the world, the systematic decrease of hospitalization of patients with eating disorders in Poland was observed. The decrease of patients' age was also noticed. Females were hospitalized much more often than males, what was observed in previous study.It would be interesting to see whether this is due to a decrease in the actual number of eating disorders, a decrease in diagnosis, or an improvement of outpatient treatments. The abstract didn't indicate trends in EDs outside of hospitalization, which would probably shed some light on this trend.