The new Centers for Disease Control and Prevention guidelines suggesting that surgeries and medicines are the best treatment for obesity in children tells me the agency is throwing up the white flag of surrender before the food industry (“Compromised science comes to your child’s doctor’s office,” Web, Jan. 13). I come from a family in which both diabetes and obesity run — yet I do not suffer from either condition, so genetics is not destiny.
I have spent over 20 years teaching nutrition and have numerous success stories of clients who have lost weight and kept it off. It is amazing to me how medical experts and clinicians continue to ignore the root causes of obesity, or what I call the “CAS factors” (content, access, science).
Content refers to the chemicals, additives and preservatives in foods that stimulate hunger and cravings. Food manufacturers, not unlike tobacco companies, have spent millions in research to determine which ingredients send these stimuli. The ‘winners’ are the most marketed to kids, leading to a form of addiction that is difficult to reverse.
Many people in the U.S. now have access to food 24 hours a day, both inside and outside the home. Traditionally, access to foods ended at 8 p.m., but with ubiquity of fast food, carry-out foods and all-night convenience stores, food is available anytime (with late-night foods being particularly unhealthy).
Constant eating eliminates the body’s food-absorption recovery time, which means increased body fat and weight. When parents or schools elect not to educate kids about the science of food, they only enable children to fall into various ‘food traps.’
I have devoted numerous lectures to the science of food absorption, the importance of careful label reading and the need to understand why food cravings exist so we can reverse them. It is enormously disappointing that the so-called experts at the CDC feel the need to promote surgery and pharmaceutical treatments for obesity.