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Linda Bacon's Newest Paper

Linda Bacon and Lucy Aphramor have recently published a new paper on the failure of the weight-based paradigm and the positive effects of a non-weight based approach to health (HAES, or Health at Every Size) in The Nutrition Journal.

The abstract is here and you can also access a provisional pdf of the full study, Weight Science:
Evaluating the Evidence for a Paradigm Shift
. Sometime soon, a more polished version will be available through the link on the abstract.

I'll let the press release speak for itself:

Dieting and other weight-loss efforts may unintentionally lead to weight gain and diminished health status, according to two researchers, including a UC Davis nutritionist, whose new study appears in the Jan. 24 issue of the Nutrition Journal, an online scientific journal.

Rather than focusing on weight loss, the researchers recommend that people focus on improving their health status.

In the new study, co-authors Linda Bacon, an associate nutritionist in the UC Davis Department of Nutrition, and Lucy Aphramor, an NHS specialist dietician and honorary research fellow at the Applied Research Centre in Health and Lifestyle Interventions at Coventry University, England, cite evidence from almost 200 studies.

“Although health professionals may mean well when they suggest that people lose weight, our analysis indicates that researchers have long interpreted research data through a biased lens,” Bacon said. “When the data are reconsidered without the common assumption that fat is harmful, it is overwhelmingly apparent that fat has been highly exaggerated as a risk for disease or decreased longevity.”

Bacon noted that the study findings do not support conventional ideas that:

• weight loss will prolong life;
• anyone can lose weight and keep it off through diet and exercise;
• weight loss is a practical and positive goal;
• weight loss is the only way overweight and obese people can improve their health; and
• obesity places an economic burden on society.

“The weight-focused approach does not, in the long run, produce thinner, healthier bodies,” said Bacon.

Updated to link to this, more comprehensive post on Living 400 Pounds.

The BBC is at it again | Lonie McMichael: Love

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