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Each year 45 million Americans diet to lose weight, spending $33 billion on weight-loss products - and yet, 68 percent of Americans are now classified as overweight or obese. If the prescription to eat less and exercise more, or maintaining a calorie deficit is all it takes to lose or maintain a healthy weight, why are so many of us fat and getting fatter?

This week on Skepticality, Swoopy talks with award-winning science journalist Gary Taubes about his most recent book, Why We Get Fat: And What to Do About It which looks critically at the science of adiposity, the hundreds of years of scientific research and data about the best ways to avoid obesity and obesity related illness, and debunks the myth that losing weight is all about the calories.
Show Notes

Date – April 15, 2011 read by Swoopy Our new theme song is by Steve Seamans of the Daisy Dillman Band. The song is available via the Skepticality app. Today’s guest is Gary Taubes, author of Why We Get Fat, And What to Do About It. CDC statistics state that more than 72 million Americans are obese. Even skeptics don’t agree about the science of fat. One of his early books is Bad Science… about the cold fusion hoax of 1989. In 2007 Taubes published his first book about the science of nutrition: Good Calories, Bad Calories Gary was brave enough to recently appear on the Dr. Oz show. Skeptic History Notes: Brian Deer won the British Press Award for Specialist Journalist of the Year. The St. Petersburg Times has long investigated Scientology, and won a Pulitzer. Bette Orsini, one of the two reporters on that original series, died on March 26, 2011. The Synanon cult was also investigated by a local paper, which won a Pulitzer. The Columbus (Georgia) Enquirer-Sun won a Pulitzer. Carl Sagan’s book The Dragons of Eden won a Pulitzer on April 17, 1978. Jonathan Weiner’s book The Beak of the Finch: A Story of Evolution In Our Time. Clarence Darrow defended John Scopes. Inherit the Wind debuted on Broadway on April 21, 1955. The anti-evolution documentary Expelled premiered in theaters on April 18, 2008. You can read daily Skeptic History facts on Twitter, Facebook or FriendFeed. William Banting published his famous letter On Corpulence advising reducing carbs in 1869. Native peoples who go from a protein and fat based diet to include more processed foods become obese. Some of the poorest populations in the world are malnourished and obese due to their diet. Japanese who emigrate to the US see US rates of cancer in their family in 2 generations. Corn syrup is just like sugar. The problem is – it’s still sugar. Taubes recently published an article in the New York Times asking Is Sugar Toxic? A newer version of an very old French way of eating is gaining in popularity. Quack diets like the HCG diet are also popular, and dangerous. Take time to review the books you read by scientists you admire, it helps.

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