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Dr David Katz

Fools, Fanatics and Fat-Free Milk

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 03.31.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

Here's what we actually know. In the U.S., more dairy in the diet -- of whatever variety -- is generally associated with better health and weight outcomes. But that is likely because in the context of our culture, more dairy means less soda. In global context, some of the world's healthiest diets and most convincing intervention trials have de-emphasized, or even excluded dairy.

Choices, Cheese and Sherpas -- Or -- The Role of Personal Responsibility in Health and Weight Control

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 03.26.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

There is a point at which invoking personal responsibility to deal with a contrived array of obstacles is both benighted and callous. Yes, everyone should try to eat well -- but they should not have to overcome the ingenious manipulations of highly paid mercenaries conspiring against them to make it so.

Obesity and Oblivion -- Or -- What I've Learned Under General Anesthesia

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 03.23.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

I consider it a societal travesty that hyperendemic obesity and the metabolic mayhem that often follows in its wake are treated ever more frequently, in ever younger people, under general anesthesia. Our answer to obesity is, it seems, oblivion.

Do We Need to Kill Our Heroes?

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 03.19.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

I am, of course, still a child of love and privilege. But I have at least this claim against naiveté: I have looked into the eyes of someone ready, willing, and eager to kill me. I have at least this notion of what's out there.

On Faith and Data

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 03.15.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

I have clung to the conviction that truth is often immediately furtive, but relentless and ultimately indomitable. Seekers of truth are patient of necessity, obliged to be disciples of time. So far, I have kept the faith that eventually enough data would rally us to common understanding and common cause.

Judging the Judging of Diets

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 03.12.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

I'm not sure that alternative diets with some salient feature to define them need to compete with one another. A second and related concern is that this kind of exercise may tend to foster a preoccupation with labels, rather than compositional details.

Health: Know What, or No How

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 03.09.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

I genuinely believe the luminous prize of vitality -- more years of life, more life in years -- is tantalizingly, almost agonizingly within reach. But until more of us can agree we do know what, there simply is no how.

Please Don't Feed the Morons

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 03.05.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

So here we are -- at the start of a year, reflecting on the long-overdue end of the junk food era. But there's no need to hope or whine or wring our hands. We are in charge. Any time we like we could refuse to eat like morons by deciding not to swallow any more baloney. This could be that year.

Ready-or-Not Resolutions: Let's Focus on the Crocuses!

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 02.26.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

Resolutions, born of a "ready or not, let's go" mentality, invite failure. So reinvent your resolutions and make them more likely to succeed. Resolve to get ready, and go only when you are.

Of Skin and Kin at Christmas

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 02.22.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

How misleading our superficial differences! How right we are to think of a human family, and indeed, an extended family in which all of our planetary cohabitants are cousins, at one remove or another.

Feeding Homo Sapiens: Are We Truly as Clueless as We Seem?

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 02.18.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

I would like to think that this is the New Year we situate ourselves sensibly among the panoply of creatures who eat as they fundamentally should. But instead, 2013 draws to a close with a whole new crop of iconoclastic dietary diatribe.

Cell Phones And Cell Biology: Are We Selling Out?

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 02.11.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

'Tis the season to, well, buy stuff. Increasingly, the stuff we buy is electronic. In fact, not only that, but increasingly the stuff we buy with is electronic, too. We are using gizmos to shop for gadgets, or possibly gadgets to shop for gizmos.

Statins, Static and the Status Quo: Is Anyone Getting the Signal?

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 02.04.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

If it were truly clear exactly what criteria for statin use were best, there would be no controversy in the first place. There appear to be strengths and weaknesses to both sets of criteria, the old and the new.

The Logic of Gifting Health

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 02.02.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

This holiday season, as our own thoughts turn aspirational for ourselves and those we love, permit to suggest the logic of not just wishing for health and long life, but gifting them. I believe the right approach allows for exactly that.

Holiday Health: Your Right to Let the Good Times Roll

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 02.01.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

In the pursuit of health, there is the risk of forgetting what health is for. Health is for living -- and while health certainly makes life better, something is seriously wrong if preoccupation with health ruins the good times. Don't let it ruin yours

Lifestyle as Medicine: At a Fork in the Road, Who's Got a Spoon?

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 01.25.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

Lifestyle is the greatest of all medicine, but it may feel in this morbidigenic, obesigenic world of ours that we can't get it to go down, because we just don't have the right spoon. It may feel that we can't get there from here. That is, in a word, wrong.

Fixing Food Stamps for All? Could be a SNAP

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 01.25.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

I believe food stamps could be reimagined, and the result could be a win for all concerned. I see many more challenges in the realm of health promotion with just such win-win potential.

Health at an Impasse: The Case for Getting Past Collusion

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 01.23.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

We could blame it all on the food companies that make the junk food, and the technology companies that keep inventing more ways for us to be sedentary. But as noted, the enemy is both them and us.

Waiting on the Weight Loss Fairy

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 01.23.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

No, there isn't just one magical thing experts do to find health and lose weight -- any more than expert chefs use just one magical ingredient, expert musicians play just one magical note, expert pilots pull just one magical lever, or expert authors use just one magical letter.

What REALLY Kills Us

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 01.23.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

What really kills us prematurely, and all too often imposes years of misery beforehand, isn't a list of chronic diseases, but the factors that cause those diseases. What really takes years from life and life from years is a willingness to know WHAT, yet neglect the opportunity to know HOW.

Lose Weight, Find Health? Sleep On It

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 01.23.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

We have long known that sleep is of profound importance to health. We can't be too busy to get the sleep we need, unless we are also too busy to get the health and weight control we want.

Grains of Truth

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 01.23.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

Whether about wheat or meat, sugar or starch, calories or carbohydrates, this fat or that fat, we seem to have an insatiable appetite for mere grains of truth about diet and health, rather than the complete recipe.

The Race to Redefine Calories: Iconoclasts, Start Your Engines!

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 01.23.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

Just as cars can differ dramatically in everything from handling, to torque, to acceleration, to fuel efficiency, so too do our bodies differ in all the nuances of metabolism. Some of us are natively predisposed to be faster, or stronger, or slower, or weaker.

Scapegoats, Saints and Saturated Fats: Old Mistakes in New Directions

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 01.23.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

Demonizing saturated fat never helped us much. Canonizing it now won't help us any either. All who share a concern for eating well and the health advances that can come from it must band together to renounce the perennial branding of this, that, or the other food component as scapegoat or saint.

Can Sense Prevail in a Sound Bite World?

David Katz, M.D. | Posted 01.23.2014 | Healthy Living
David Katz, M.D.

Nonsense about health and weight prevails on best-seller lists; it prevails on the morning shows; it prevails in the blogosphere. It prevails not because it helps you, the buyers, but because the sellers can sell it. It prevails because false hope is a very profitable business. It doesn't have to be this way.