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Leo Brown
Leo Brown is a writer and the founder of, a blog that generates ideas and strategies that lead to healthy, sustainable living. After graduating from Williams College, he taught English at a university in Novosibirsk, Russia through the Fulbright program. Leo lives in Jamaica Plain, Massachusetts. Leo is a violinist and runner, and he tweets at @newfoodculture and @leoebrown.

Entries by Leo Brown

A 2,000-Calorie Diet: 'The Best of a Bad Situation'

(2) Comments | Posted May 9, 2014 | 12:54 PM

We all read the same Nutrition Facts label, and it's always based on a 2,000-calorie diet. But we all have different nutritional needs. So where did that number come from?

"It was as close to the middle as we could get, and it was a round number."


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Why Don't Nutrition Labels Include Percent Daily Value of Calories?

(0) Comments | Posted March 26, 2014 | 3:31 PM

There's a proposal for a new Nutrition Facts label, the first revision in 20 years! It's been praised by nutrition leaders such as Marion Nestle ("How's this for a surprise? I like it!") for including features such as added sugars, a bolder indication of calories, and,...

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"What's Local?"

(1) Comments | Posted January 30, 2014 | 3:20 PM

Two simple words will likely get you all the information you need.

That poor, unsuspecting waiter who finds me or another inquisitive eater at the table. I want to know what I'm eating, but I don't want to inconvenience anyone. What dunderhead wants to put a waiter in a tough...

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Beyond Food Justice: Healthy Food Choices for All

(0) Comments | Posted January 22, 2014 | 10:19 AM

A study recently published by the Harvard School of Public Health has shown "that the healthiest diets cost about $1.50 more per day than the least healthy diets."

While this study validates concerns related to food security and inequality, it also speaks to interesting question of values for...

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Worried About Gluten? This Is Your Brain on Journalism

(4) Comments | Posted December 31, 2013 | 11:01 AM

"This Is Your Brain on Gluten," an article written by Dr. James Hamblin in The Atlantic, has enjoyed many likes and shares. We are captivated and intrigued by the controversy among medical professionals as to whether carbohydrates, and grains in particular, are safe for consumption. We are also...

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This Holiday Season, No Fruitcake, Please

(3) Comments | Posted December 3, 2013 | 9:57 AM

Is it hard to stick to my food choices during the holiday season?

Friends and acquaintances have commented that my restrictive food choices -- nearly total elimination of carbohydrates in order to reduce my reliance on insulin injections -- must require special determination in the face of pumpkin pies and...

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Do Oreos Violate the Pollan Doctrine?

(10) Comments | Posted October 25, 2013 | 9:00 AM

Michael Pollan writes that we shouldn't eat anything our grandmother wouldn't recognize. Well, Oreos have been around since 1912. Are they fair game?

I don't mean to pick apart the idea on a technicality or exception. And Pollan sets up other guidelines that, if we cooperate, will steer us away...

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Are Oreos Addictive? They're Trouble Regardless

(11) Comments | Posted October 20, 2013 | 2:06 PM


A scientist and his students at Connecticut College have shown that certain foods -- the experiment focused on Oreos -- stimulate rat brains in the same way as drugs. In fact, the rats trip harder on Oreo filling than on cocaine or morphine.


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Navigating a World of Groundbreaking Studies

(0) Comments | Posted October 10, 2013 | 1:25 PM

It's easy to get scared or excited by dramatic headlines. Did you hear that high, or even slightly elevated, blood sugar has been linked to dementia?

When I read that, I got scared and posted a link on Facebook. Only after a flurry of comments did I notice,...

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Why I Gave Up Peanut Butter Cups Forever

(11) Comments | Posted September 20, 2013 | 5:56 PM

At six weeks, doctors removed most of my pancreas. Then, at six months, they removed most of what was left.

It was an ordeal. I was born with a genetic condition that caused my pancreas to pump way more insulin than I needed, causing dangerously low blood sugars. In 1989,...

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