On its surface, the cause of the Western world's obesity epidemic seems simple: People are eating too many calories and getting too little calorie-burning exercise; the imbalance manifests as excess fat. But this explanation is too simple.
We need to reduce our emphasis on disease management and emphasize health promotion instead. How much more desirable -- and less expensive -- it would be to prevent diabetes and heart disease, rather than to have to treat those diseases and their myriad complications.
No one's health is improved by swapping out natural saturated or monounsaturated fats for skim milk, sugars or processed grains. So if you encounter misbegotten products such as fat-free half-and-half, do what I do -- leave them on the shelf.
Hormesis is a little-known term with huge implications. It refers to a fascinating phenomenon: a favorable biological reaction to low doses of chemical toxins, radiation or some other form of stress that is damaging, even fatal, in higher doses.