Canadian Politics from Canada's Centre

Wednesday, December 14, 2005

Portion Sizes Linked to Obesity, Centrerion tells Time Magazine

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I was pretty happy last week when I got an email telling me a letter of mine would be published in the prestigious Time. Being the skeptic and Murphy's law sucker that I am, I waited to get it to believe it. It's really there, though! (But only in the Canadian edition; my sister in NY didn't see it in hers.)
So what could I possibly have had to say that was remotely important? I couldn't find the original letter I sent Time, because for whatever reason, it isn't in my gmail Sent Mail folder, but I'll post what they published. The gist of what I wrote is here. What they cut is that I found these things out by researching eating habits and obesity with my friend Matthew Rosenberg, and the names of a few of the researchers whose work Matt and I studied (which I guess would'nt be interesting to the general population, in hindsight).
"Time reported that a Cornell University study showed that big portion sizes can lead to overeating, even if the food isn't particularly appealing [Nov 21]. The Cornell findings confirm previous research noting a correlation between serving size and how much is eaten. Although correlation does not imply causation, an important part of the solution to the increasing obesity of North Americans would be to encourage restaurant chains to reduce their servings to nutritionist-approved sizes. Adhering to such standards could then be touted as corporate social responsibility. Whatever the solution, the information about portion sizes has been known for a while. It is a shame that nothing has been done to make consumers more aware of the relationship."
Being my own worst critic, I note that I forgot a comma in the first sentence (the one that's in this post wasn't in Time, and I presume I did not write one there), which makes it a bit of a run-on sentence. Also, where it says "would be to encourage..." it would have flowed better with my idea to write "Could be". Lastly, I don't for some reason recall having written the last sentence, and conclude from that absent memory that I'm getting alzheimer's early. Or just a bad case of stupidity... whatever.
Hope you guys liked that.
I'm going to post the research review Matt and I did, for those who are interested. Just not tonight. I'm going to forget to do it, tonight.
I've since posted the research. You can read it here:
Portion Sizes and Obesity - The Research
A (very long) annotated bibliography that goes into much depth.
Portion Sizes and Obesity: The Variables
A relatively short (4 double spaced pages) discussion of variables studied and the research Matt and I planned.


At 1:21 a.m., Canadian Politico Blogger Andrew said:

Looks great, it's right there on page 2, bottom right hand corner with a nice big header.

Have you ever "seen super size me?"

At 9:13 p.m., Canadian Politico Blogger lecentre said:

I haven't seen super size me. From what I understand, it's more of a point against McDonald's and junk food though, then it is about the portions, whatever the title may be. Also, they made a movie of someone eating only McD's for a month and losing weight, so I don't know what the movie's really got. Maybe I'm wrong though? Care to tell me more about the movie?


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