Obesity columnist errs by omission

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In her piece "Shaq attacks childhood obesity - and other adults can do it, too" (July 7), guest columnist Paula Moore makes incomplete and biased claims while addressing the growing problem of childhood obesity in America.

Moore, an employee for People for the Ethical Treatment of Animals, spends nearly all of her efforts touting vegetarianism as a better alternative than eating meat. She cites "population studies" to point out differences in the obesity rates of vegans and meat-eaters while failing to mention their sources (I wonder if PETA had a hand in these studies).

Moore also omits information on the higher rates of some micronutrient deficiencies in vegetarians as compared to non-vegetarians. Her comment "This mountain of meat is making us fat," is a huge and troubling generalization; sweets and snacks such as soft drinks, candy and pastries, all a huge problem in our public schools, are far more likely to be determining factors in childhood obesity than meat, which is curiously made the overwhelming scapegoat by this PETA rep.

Perhaps the most important omission in Moore's piece is a call for physical activity. Diet change without increasing exercise has consistently shown to be ineffective in achieving and, more notably, maintaining weight loss (see the "Practical Guide" URL listed below).

I applaud any efforts by The Augusta Chronicle in promoting healthy lifestyle changes and I thank the publication for addressing such an important issue. However, I'll take Shaq's advice to get kids off of the couch over Moore's biased generalizations any day.

Good resources for information and planning related to healthy eating include the current food pyramid, available at www.mypyramid.gov, and the "Practical Guide" to obesity treatment and prevention, available at www.nhlbi.nih.gov/guidelines/obesity/prctgd_c.pdf and produced by the National Heart Lung and Blood Institute.

Philip Tapley Jr., Athens

(Editor's note: The writer holds a bachelor's degree in dietetics.)

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bone
23
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bone 07/17/07 - 12:06 pm
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always preferred the french

always preferred the french paradox diet myself: fried everything, wine at every meal (breakfast, too?), and hardcore smoking.

_kpc_
22
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_kpc_ 07/17/07 - 04:52 pm
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I sorta got my name back! It

I sorta got my name back! It tells me kpc is already taken. Whoever has it...please take care of it!

_kpc_
22
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_kpc_ 07/17/07 - 05:40 pm
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The time is still a bit off.

The time is still a bit off.

TakeAstand
13
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TakeAstand 07/17/07 - 08:51 pm
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What is it with the name

What is it with the name things? Did you guys post something bad? I was wondering where you had been kpc!! I seen a scoobydo1 posting on another article.. is that you too scobydo? I keep seeing things about imposters lol. I'm confused.lol

Daddyrabbit
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Daddyrabbit 07/17/07 - 11:16 pm
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For what it's worth, I've

For what it's worth, I've seen obese vegans also. sometimes you just need to eat a little less AND sometime there are medical problems where you cannot control your weight. This is why some people can eat like a horse (figuratively speaking) and still be skinny as a rail. Don't put the blame on meat or McDonalds. Each of us has our own reasons for being over weight. I, too, am over weight mainly because I find it very difficult to limit my intake of not what, but how much I eat. As for the vegan die hards, isn't it true we are what we eat. I also like vegetables, but, a good chicken leg is hard to beat and I don't go around defacing our taxpayer paid for stop signs as PETA is prone to do. All things in moderation.

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