Hi folks,

It turns out that when health news rains, it pours. Recently, these studies and news sources have come out:

  • Eating while watching TV makes you fat – “Studying childhood obesity, University of Toronto nutritionist Harvey Anderson found that kids who watched TV while eating lunch took in 228 extra calories than those who ate without the television on,” says today’s Reuters report.
  • Eat less, live 5 years longer – While the studies are not yet conclusive and while more studies have been done in animals than in humans, directions point to this suggestion: “Eat 15 percent less starting at age 25 and you might add 4.5 years to your life, says Eric Ravussin, who studies human health and performance at the Pennington Biomedical Research Center in Louisiana,” reports MSNBC today.
  • Keep a food diary and lose twice as much weight – “It’s not fun to write down what you eat; it just works,” said study co-author Dr. Victor J. Stevens at Kaiser Permanente Center in Portland, Oregon. The study followed almost 1,700 men and women who were either overweight or obese. The average weight was 212 pounds. In 20 weeks, the group who did not keep a food diary lost 9 pounds on average. The group who did keep food diaries? 18 pounds on average! And how should you keep a food diary? It doesn’t matter, says Dr. Stevens – a notebook, PostIts, on your computer – any method works as long as you write things down shortly after your eat. This report from the today’s Washington Post.

What does all this tell us? Eat less, and be aware when you’re eating (not in front of the TV, and write things down if you want to lose more). Good things to know.

Also safe things to know as we head into summer and ripe low-calorie fruit here in North America. Between watermelons, blueberries, peaches, and nectarines, lower calories are certainly possible in the summertime. Choosing fresh vegetables and fruit over processed pizza is quite inviting in July and August.

Bon appetit!


  1. Jeff Dustin
    Posted Wednesday July 9, 2008 at 11:25 am | Permalink

    Love me some fresh fruit!

  2. Jeff Dustin
    Posted Wednesday July 9, 2008 at 9:19 pm | Permalink

    I just posted a comment over at PPND (your other baby) to Caroline.

    I was struggling with the question, but I think you’re pretty clever so maybe you can help me.

    I asked if setting happiness as an explicit goal would lead to greater happiness or do you need to set tangental ones like swimming 100 meters in X seconds, scrapbooking all your kids’ photos, writing a novel called Publicani, etc.

    I guess the reason I’m curious is this: do you have to change your external life to become a happier person, because that’s what much of the exercises suggest…things like doing random acts of kindness, smiling, exercising your strengths, building lasting relationships, jogging 30 minutes a day, and so on.

    Can you just sort of contemplate happiness and become a happier person? Sonja recommends stopping overthinking. That would be one example of an inside the brain change.

    Would you comment on this issue, because you’re into goal setting and achievement and I think you have something important to add. I’m going to ask Kathryn as well.


  3. Posted Saturday July 12, 2008 at 12:32 pm | Permalink

    I love the idea of the food diary…I hate counting calories (actually, I hate counting anything), but just writing things down would give me the awareness. I wonder if I kept a “spending diary” at the same time if that would have the same effect. Maybe I should have all kinds of diaries for different things…but that’s me overthinking it. Hey, I should write that down!


  4. grimo1re
    Posted Saturday July 26, 2008 at 2:22 am | Permalink

    I’d like to see as study that studies the effect of this kind of news…I wonder how people respond.