Can people with obesity be metabolically healthy?

To date, countless epidemiological studies have shown that as you move from a normal weight (BMI = 18.5-24.9 kg/m2) towards overweight (BMI = 25-29.9kg/m2) and obesity (BMI ≥ 30 kg/m2) the risk of many diseases increases exponentially. Does this imply that every individual carrying excess weight is guaranteed to develop diabetes, cardiovascular disease, cancer, or some other disease? Although this belief prevails, the cumulative research suggests the answer to the above question is a resounding…

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Don’t crap on other parents

This summer I saw an explosion of discussion on Twitter concerning an article on the website Mom.me, titled “To the Parents Who Give Their Kids iPads in Restaurants“.  The article was a letter from author Amy Freeman to the parents she had seen letting their kids use iPads in a restaurant. To the couple seated beside me at that bistro last week: I nearly stopped to talk to you as I left the restaurant but…

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Is all screen time bad?

Travis’ Note: Today’s post comes from colleague and frequent contributor Dr Allana LeBlanc.  You can find more on Allana at the bottom of this post. If you’re not familiar with current definitions for sedentary time, or screen time, have a look at the consensus project by the Sedentary Behaviour Research Network here. Sedentary behavior (especially screen time) has been compared to everything from cigarettes to serial killers and in the world of health fads, it’s…

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What’s for dinner? Our Experience with Meal Kit Delivery Services

Tell me if this scenario is familiar to you: Its 6:30pm and you and your significant other just came home, both tired and famished. You check the fridge to realize you don’t really have the ingredients to make a decent and relatively quick meal. Yes, you know you should have thought of this before, but laundry took precedence over groceries the night before. So you schlep over to the local grocer to pick up a few…

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Improve your health by swapping out sitting

Today’s post comes from Drs Annemarie Koster and Julianne van der Berg.  For more information on their work, please see the bottom of this post. Doing desk work, watching TV, commute. In daily life sitting is the most common behaviour. Unfortunately, sitting has been indicated as the new smoking, meaning that the current sedentary lifestyle has a highly negative impact on health. For example, we previously showed that more time spend in a sedentary position was…

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Which activity types are healthy alternatives to replace leisure screen time and reduce mortality risk?

Today’s post comes from Dr Katrien Wijndaele, University of Cambridge, UK. More information on Dr Wijndaele can be found at the bottom of this post. Excessive leisure screen time, including TV viewing, is highly prevalent in a large proportion of adults on a daily basis, without signs of decline (3, 6). It is also the type of sedentary behaviour most strongly and consistently associated with the development of chronic disease and premature mortality (4, 8). Reducing…

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Physical activity and sperm count: what’s the connection?

Yesterday I discussed recent research that suggests sperm counts of adult men of Western countries have dropped by over 50% during the past 40 years (yearly 1.4% decline). At least part of this trend may be explained by increasing adiposity of the average Western man. Indeed, as also discussed yesterday, there seems to be a J-shaped association between body mass index (BMI) and abnormal sperm count, such that by comparison to normal weight men, overweight,…

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Is obesity to blame for men’s falling sperm counts?

A recent study that made international headlines suggested that sperm counts of adult men of Western countries have dropped by over 50% during the past 40 years. The study, published in the journal Human Reproduction Update looked at data on approximately 43,000 men who participated in 185 studies between 1973 and 2011. Although we often hear a growing concern about the over-population of the planet, and the potential for humanity to outstrip the earth’s resources,…

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Do professors get the summer off?

Do professors get the summer off? I get that question a lot.  Like pretty much everyday between May and August.  The short answer is no, but I thought I’d post a brief explainer. I work at a primarily undergraduate Canadian university (e.g. we have lots of students doing Bachelor’s degrees, but fewer MSc/MA and PhD students).  At Canadian institutions large and small, full-time professors usually work 12 months/year (the situation is different for instructors and sessional…

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Forks Vs Feet, Part 2

Several years ago we hosted an event in Ottawa titled “Forks vs Feet“, where Dr Yoni Freedhoff and Dr Bob Ross debated the relative merits of diet and exercise for obesity management.  Last month the Toronto chapter of the Canadian Obesity Network brought Yoni and Bob back together for an updated debate at Mount Sinai hospital.  The video of the event has now been published, and is available below.  If, like me, you were unable…

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