Personally, I have long thought that whatever the particular merits of breakfast, hieratic zeal as the main course was in fact a rather dubious way to start the day. So it is that I welcomed a new study that purportedly was about debunking breakfast, but was really about debunking dogma for breakfast.
A new study in the journal Obesity, comparing diet soda to water for weight loss, has resulted in extensive and worldwide media coverage -- some of it, to my surprise, directly involving me. My involvement derives from my published opinions about diet soda and artificial sweeteners, which thus far remain unchanged after reading the study in question.
In a rare demonstration that there is intelligent life down here, we have recognized that if this is what millions of years of evolutionary biology came up with, we were unlikely to do better. From whence, the answer to the sleepaway camp dilemma: Put your initials in your underwear! If you identify your own, you don't have to recognize everyone else's.
Integrative Medicine is not an invitation to supplant evidence with wishful thinking. It is an invitation to a wider array of treatment options, and the prospect of effectively addressing patient need more of the time. Realizing such potential benefits -- at the Cleveland Clinic, or anywhere else -- requires both open mindedness and careful skepticism.
We need to reorient our cultural attitude about obesity so it is not an excuse to argue the respective merits of personal responsibility and public policy. Rather, if we are to fix it at its origins, we need to acknowledge that people who are empowered are most capable, and most inclined, to exercise responsibility.
In the aftermath of his commentary about butter in the New York Times, Mark Bittman and I -- along with several others, including Dr. Dariush Mozzafarian from Harvard, one of the authors of the study that set this all in motion -- were invited to discuss the health effects of butter on the NPR program, "On Point," this morning.