been a strange week. That’s true for many reasons, but for now
we’ll focus on something I posted recently, which was that a recent
study showed that regularly drinking diet
soda can significantly increase your chances of having a stroke
or heart attack.
of course, that announcement has quickly been met by all sorts
of side stories, opposing viewpoints, and a fair amount of attention.
And honestly… in the article I’ve linked to they even said not
to jump to any conclusions. More time and research is needed to
say that as any sort of definitive and accurate result.
you’ve been coming to the Backpack for a while, you know how I
can be at times. When studies say drink more water… drink more
water… it’s great, no calories, you’re body needs it… drink more
water… only to a year or so later decide that people are overhydrating…
well, I laugh.
tests show that drinking water… even bottled water… may have been
touched by waste and runoff so that it’s filled with drugs… well,
I roll my eyes.
many cases my reaction is based on wondering what the heck the
people are thinking with their research and announcements. Perhaps
the results just seem so blazingly obvious… perhaps the work seems
like such a waste of time… the end result is a simple question...
why… why… why?
that have a steady, even approach to things tend to appeal to
me. I’m not an extremist. For example, it’s not that I don’t believe
in global warming… it’s just that so much of the evidence is presented
in ways that say there were times when the planet was warmer.
And those findings often include a disclaimer that says it may
have been warmer just a few thousand years ago. What those findings
don’t say is what kind of cars the people were driving back then
or what rates their electric companies were charging them for
their fossil-fuel-driven-atmosphere-polluting service.
just seems so much simpler and more acceptable to me that all
of us look for a middle ground where there are elements of the
issue that we can all agree about. In the case of the environment,
we could easily say that we treat the planet horrendously, need
to examine ways of recycling and participate in such programs,
and overall just need to be more aware of how we act and what
we do. Not many people can argue with that rationally… and no
polar bears needed to be branded or trademarked or brought into
we stop littering and use our resources better? Yes. (End of discussion…
let’s get to work.)
do I mention all of this and recent news? Well… here we go…
study from Cornell says that working
mothers could be one of the causes of overweight
on. It gets better.)
study says that exposing infants to solid foods
earlier may be linked to weight problems.
let’s approach this from a different path…
you really need me… or your doctor… or some Ivy League study…
to tell you that a diet consisting only of cookies, chocolate
pudding and grape soda isn’t healthy?
you be stunned if I suggested to you that by getting some exercise
and eating sensibly, you’ll feel a bit better?
my biggest problem came about ten years ago when I went from a
job that involved a fair amount of moving around to significant
time behind a desk. Eat right and exercise may not be perfect
or complete as a health plan, but as opposed to eating nothing
but marshmallows I think it works.)
back to our recent studies…
mothers? Ok. How many families can survive long term with only
one parent working? Did the study take into account single-parent
homes? What if a grandparent lived in the home and was their for
childcare and supervision?
article I’ve included says that a father’s occupation, divorce,
and other potential factors couldn’t be accounted for. Not kidding.
They couldn’t make conclusions for many potential factors that
could be involved. Heck, apparently they couldn’t even account
for whether or not the parents worked at the same time, had overlapping
schedules, or had at least one of them available to be home at
so I ask you… given that studies are making claims that they can’t
provide answers about, and have results they can’t confirm… are
we really that far away from seeing a study that says a household
with a man and a woman, with only the man working, two-point-three
kids, a dog and a fence is the healthiest way to grow up?
laugh. I’ll bet I could find something that says pretty much exactly
are questions to be asked of any results. For example… who funded
the study? It’s often amazing when you see a claim and learn that
the answers fall right in line, step for step, with the individual
or company that gave the dollars to conduct the research.
a group advocating stay at home moms or breastfeeding be behind
these studies I’m noting?
know… but it’s certainly possible.
even if there isn’t something sneaky taking place… for me, once
again, it becomes a question of responsibility. If I slump into
the chair with a glass of milk and a slice of cake instead of
taking a walk and eating an apple, I can’t blame anyone but myself
when I gain a couple of pounds.
you notice that those overweight babies eating solid foods were
tracked for a whopping total of three years? Yup. According to
the article, that’s true. So, in other words, they are claiming
that babies place on solid foods before they are four months of
age are more likely to be overweight on their third birthday.
Not when the reach school age… not as teenagers… not overweight
for life. I mean really… go read the article, because it’s amazing.
As always though… perhaps it’s just me.
I don’t know enough about these studies. Maybe I’m missing the
I do know is that the results are being presented and reported
by mass media outlets as if the information within pertains to
us all. The blurbs and quotes are made more generic and shocking
to get us to read the articles… and maybe buy the products of
regularly drinking diet soda may be bad for you.
this really a surprising concept?