Physical activity, more than diet, keeps the pounds from coming back

A study of 14 participants in the "Biggest Loser" TV show indicates that plenty of physical activity — "much more of it than public health guidelines suggest — is the key to preventing weight gain after significant weight loss, says the New York Times. "On average, those who managed to maintain a significant weight loss had 80 minutes a day of moderate activity, like walking, or 35 minutes a day of vigorous exercise, like running."

Child obesity soared worldwide in two generations

Some 124 million boys and girls around the world are obese, putting the children at risk of chronic diseases such as diabetes, said a team of researchers in the journal The Lancet. Obesity rates among youths ages 5-19 years are eight times higher today than they were in 1975 and exceed 20 percent in nations including the United States.

Government agents are in the cheese business

In the midst of a national cheese glut, a government-sponsored marketing group called Dairy Management Inc. (DMI) is partnering with fast-food restaurants to encourage Americans to eat more cheese. Last year, farmers poured out 50 million gallons of milk because prices and demand were so low. As dairy consumption has dropped, DMI, which was behind the popular “Got Milk?” campaign, now spends much of its time sending experts into the secret product-creation rooms of chains like Burger King, Domino’s, McDonald’s, Pizza Hut, and Wendy’s.

Who eats fast food? Everybody, but middle-income earners especially.

Fast food regularly is blamed for contributing to rising obesity rates because it is typically high in fat and salt, says CNN’s The Conversation. And because it’s relatively inexpensive, poor people get the rap of eating too much fast food, though research shows all income groups enjoy a …

French pastry-makers worry over butter shortage

Butter prices are soaring in France, the home of the croissant, whose flaky crust and satisfying taste rely on the dairy product, reports the Guardian. "There is a real risk of butter running out," says the federation of French biscuit and cake makers.

Ten percent of world population now obese, says study

Ten percent of the world’s population is now obese, and obesity levels are rising even in countries previously known for food scarcity, says a study designed by the Institute for Health Metrics and Evaluation.

You may not be obese, but you could still be ‘overfat’

Up to 76 percent of the global population of 7.2 billion is "overfat" - a term that a new study published in Frontier Public Health says refers to “a condition of having sufficient excess body fat to impair health.” It includes the 39-49 percent of the global population that qualify as obese, as well as those falling into current standards for normal fat levels.

Why the U.S. is obese in seven charts

The portion of the U.S. population that is overweight or obese keeps growing larger - literally - and some experts say the "food environment" is a reason, says Vox, citing Scott Kahan, director of the National Center for Weight and Wellness. "[I]n America," says Kahan, "the unhealtiest foods are the tastiest foods, the cheapest foods, the largest-portion foods, the most available foods and the most fun foods."

Among consumers, good-tasting food may outweigh good for you

Consumers are turning to foods they shunned a few years ago, says the New York Times: "Under the new thinking, not all fat is bad and neither are all salty foods. A stigma among the public remains for sugar substitutes but less so for cane sugar, at least in moderation. And all of those things are weighed against qualities like simplicity and taste."

Full-fat dairy may protect against Type 2 diabetes

Eating full-fat milk, yogurt and cheese may help protect against Type 2 diabetes, says a study of 3,333 adults published in the journal Circulation.

Fast-food or full service, people eat more at restaurants

People consume more calories, sugar, fat, and salt when they go to a restaurant, whether it's full service or a fast-food outlet, says a study in the journal Public Health Nutrition.

Former FDA chief calls for front-of-box nutrition summary

Besides overhauling the Nutrition Fact label on food packages, the FDA should mandate a summary of nutritional information on the front of the box, said former FDA commissioner David Kessler. Writing in the New England Journal of Medicine, Kessler says such a label would list "the top three ingredients, the calorie count, and the number of additional ingredients...in bold, easy-to-read type."