Christian Schneider

Author, Columnist

Stop Eating Your Newspaper

Who knew your newspaper was making you fat? A press release from the Wisconsin Medical Society (and I had to check a couple times to make sure the date wasn\’t April 1st):

Recipe for Obesity?

Madison (April 11, 2007) – Research finds calorie-dense dessert recipes printed in major newspapers across the country may be contributing to obesity in large cities. The study, by researchers from Marshfield Clinic Research Foundation and UW Stevens Point, is published inthe latest issue of the Wisconsin Medical Journal (Volume 106, No. 2).

\”The average total caloric content of dessert recipes was significantly associated with the percent obese in the metropolitan cities,” reports the study, regarding recipes that were published the last week of August 2000. The researchers studied 64 entre\’ and 38 dessert recipes published in major newspapers serving cities with populations of 400,000 or more.

While these data cannot be interpreted as causal, they are intriguing and suggest that newspapers may play a greater role in promoting or preventing obesity than previously recognized, the researchers report.

Where to even start with this.

So in order to have better health in the inner cities, we need a lot less newspaper reading?  Reading newspapers is why your kids are tubby?  Maybe we need a \”sin tax\” on newspapers for making us fat, similar to proposals for higher taxes on soda and candy.

At least the release admits the study can\’t prove the relationship between recipes and fatties is causal.  But there isn\’t a causal relationship between number of Maple trees in Wisconsin and fat people either, and you don\’t see anyone putting out a release suggesting a link. Furthermore, what do you think the percentage of people in the inner city that make desserts found in a newspaper article are?

Let\’s hope Wisconsin\’s doctors are using a little better logic in treating patients than their journal is using diagnosing the cause of obesity in urban centers. Next up for the Wisconsin Medical Journal: \”Study suggests link between portly grandmothers and deliciousness of apple pies.\”

1 Comment

  1. I have found that if you follow healthy low fat recipes you will always be okay. It is strange that a newspaper can lead to obesity rates. I find it hard to believe.

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