Your brain, your food, and obesity


24 Responses to “Your brain, your food, and obesity”

  1. Mari Harju says:

    in b4 fat hate and pseudoscience that happens invariably in any article that touches on the subject of fat. 

    • marilove says:

      Just eat less and work out more!  That’s it!  It’s that simple!  No other information needed.

      And if you have trouble losing weight, you’re a lazy fat ass and should be ashamed.


      • Mari Harju says:

        Except that is not true.

      • MikeKStar says:

         Simple, maybe – Easy….not so much. 

        Food companies purposely promote food addiction by deliberately altering the properties of food to make them more pleasurable to our brains.  It truly is an addiction – only people don’t realize they’re addicted.

        Adding salt, sugar, fat and other chemical additives trigger dopamine responses very similar to narcotics.  This makes it harder for us to resist the urges to eat more and numbs the signals to stop when we’re full. 

        Shaming the obese and calling them a lazy fat ass is exactly the wrong response and is counter-productive.  Attitudes such as yours only contributes to the cycle of obesity described in the article.

        A recommended book that describes this topic in easy to understand detail is “The End of Overeating” by Dr. David Kessler.  A very excellent book.  The chapter about the restaurant chain Chili’s will make you want to vomit.

        • marilove says:

          Sigh.  I didn’t think my sarcasm was THAT off!

        • elix says:

          Carbs also appear to delay the “I’m full” mechanism from doing its job for even longer than it already does (around 15 minutes after your stomach is actually sated).

          And what’s the base of the Food Pyramid? 9-12 servings of yummy yummy starchy carbs a day. (No, I’m not going zero-carb on people, but is a loaf of bread a day a good idea?)

      • Ted Brennan says:

        Marilove, try some compassion you sound like Marihate. 

        Also If the scientists are arguing over conclusions that are not that simple, there is a very good chance that they have already discounted your simple hypothesis for very good reasons. I am just guessing that you are probably speaking in ignorance of the scientific debate, that you have just been too intellectually lazy to educate yourself before making simplistic inane and downright mean comments.

        Maybe next time you should start there.

        • elix says:


        • marilove says:

          LOL, dude. I was not speaking out of ignorance of the scientific debate. I was speaking sarcasm.

          • Ted Brennan says:

            yep, elix has it right. Woosh. Went right over my head. Apologies, I obviously didn’t see the sarcasm

        • marilove says:

          It’s okay; you weren’t the only one.  And I have been guilty of it myself.  Haha.  Anyway, your points are spot-on, anyway, as were the other replies — all full of good information.  So it was worth it!

      • Tim Quinn says:

        for the purposes of the following dialogue please accept the above post as the proxy we need it to be. It will now serve the purpose of polarizing the conversation despite the authors attempt to soothe the zeitgeist with some backhanded humor.

        So it goes . . .

  2. Ted Brennan says:

    So Guyenet does not have a theory in scientific sense, he has a hypothesis that is worth further study. It is scientists like Guyenet who make it a problem to teach things like evolution. Unlike those theories, he puts the cart before the horse. There is not the complex scientific support to back him up, as this article shows. His extravagant claims have not been accompanied by great overarching science. Some science, yes, but he consistently over reaches compared to his current evidence. 

    Frankly the support for his position isn’t there when it comes to obesity. But of course, even Guyenet will walk it back to the science when questioned, but not when putting forth his program of what policies people and society should take based on his hypothesis. Sadly, for nutrition and diet this is pretty par for the course. Someone gets a limited result and its off to the races. 

    Thankfully, there are people who will do the scientific reviews like in Nature. Good science is the way forward. Guyenet frequently does good science in his lab work but overreaches in his conclusions. That is the difference in the end between having a good tested hypothesis and a broader theory supported by many tested hypothesis. He has only done one section of the work.

  3. elix says:

    This is essentially the entire thesis and point of The End of Overeating by Dr. David Kessler, former FDA commissioner. He doesn’t go deep into the food chemistry from a scientist angle, but basically the book is an exposure and explanation of how the modern food industry has poured untold billions into R&D to short-circuit the reward system for the purpose of pushing more product.

    Disclaimer: I have no connection to Dr. Kessler, I’m just a fat guy trying to become less lardassed and I’ve read the book. Losing weight healthily is slow-going.

    Edit: Oh, hey, MikeKStar got there before me.

  4. Tim Quinn says:

    There is also a distinct fork in the conversation, don’t you think? The threads persist and intertwine in a quite amusing way.

    • PinkWithIndignation says:

      Oh, the fork puns one could make. Please don’t. Except this one: no one’s putting a fork in this line of scientific inquiry, it’s not done yet.

  5. Philip Terry says:

    Ted Brennan wrote: “So Guyenet does not have a theory in scientific sense…. It is scientists like Guyenet who make it a problem to teach things like evolution. ”

    Where is this stuff coming from? I don’t get this at all from reading Dr. Guyenet’s writings. Quite the opposite. Science and evolution are at the core of his writings. I don’t see any principles here from Scicurious or Ted Brennan that Stephan would disagree with (other than their characterizations of him). Seems like Stephan is being mistaken for straw men that are his antithesis.

    • nostar says:

      I completely agree; to my mind Guyenet’s writing on his blog has mostly been exemplary case of careful exploration f competing data, but also trying to find practical conclusions.

  6. HarveyBoing says:

    Of course pleasure responses from consuming calorie-rich food is related to the obesity epidemic. Duh.

    But what’s the real issue here? It’s that these calorie-rich foods, and especially those lacking in actual nutrients, are so much less expensive than food that’s good for you. In large part due to the screwed up subsidy system that’s led to corn and soybeans being the foundation of the bulk of the nation’s food supply system.

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