Study shows time-restricted diets don’t fight obesity

Meanwhile, CNN explains why we shouldn’t compliment people who lose weight. Also: A story about a man who desperately diets to salvage a Taco Bell menu item, growing complaints of illness from Lucky Charms, a meat-allergic illness from tick bites, and the trend of “gut healing.” on TikTok.

The New York Times: Scientists find no benefit to time-limited eating

The idea of ​​weight loss is quite appealing: limit your eating to six to eight hours a day, during which you can eat whatever you want. Studies in mice seemed to support what is called time-restricted eating, a popular form of intermittent fasting diet. Small studies in obese people have suggested it may help with weight loss. But now, a rigorous year-long study in which people ate a low-calorie diet between 8 a.m. and 4 p.m. or ate the same number of calories at all times of the day found no effect. (Kolata, 04/20)

And more on weight loss —

CNN: We need to stop complimenting weight loss. Here’s what to say instead

If your friend has recently lost weight, you might want to tell her how beautiful she looks. Maybe you also say you wish you had her body or self-control or ask her how she did it. Perhaps you have already received such a “compliment” in the past. Such comments are well-intentioned but can have unintended negative consequences. “In this case, we are exacerbating or unwittingly affirming the thin ideal that our society tends to emphasize and idolize,” said Alvin Tran, assistant professor of public health at the University of New Haven in Connecticut, who makes research on eating disorders and body image. “We have to be very careful when entering into conversations about someone’s physical appearance, especially their weight.” (Rogers, 04/20)

The Washington Post: A man lost 85 pounds in a bid to get Taco Bell to revive his favorite menu item

The purpose of his workout is two-fold: while his main goal is to bring back his beloved Grilled Stuft Nacho, when he started his Taco Bell challenge over a year ago, Chris Sandberg – who weighed nearly 300 pounds before the pandemic — was also looking to lose weight. He decided to merge the two missions. Although Sandberg initially executed the idea as a joke, he quickly realized that “it resonates with people” because losing weight can be a stressful struggle for many. He wanted to find a way to make his experience light. (Page, 4/20)

In other food news —

The Wall Street Journal: Lucky Charms Illness complaints spread rapidly, adding complexity to safety probe

Federal regulators formalized an investigation into the safety of Lucky Charms cereal, adding the probe Wednesday to the agency’s list of ongoing food safety outbreaks. The Food and Drug Administration said it received complaints from 231 consumers reporting illnesses after eating Lucky Charms recently, according to the agency’s outbreak investigation website and a person familiar with the matter. The FDA said it had launched an inspection of grain production operations. (Gasparro and Walker, 4/20)

Fox News: Single tick bite can cause life-threatening meat allergy: report

Have you ever eaten steak at dinner time and developed hives at midnight? As tick season kicks off, it’s a good idea to be aware of a life-threatening food allergy called alpha-gal syndrome that can occur after certain tick bites — particularly the lone star tick, according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. (CDC). “An ‘alpha-gal’ allergy refers to a severe and life-threatening allergy to a carbohydrate molecule called galactose-alpha-1,3-galactose found in most mammals or ‘red meat,'” according to the American Academy of Allergy, Asthma, and Immunology. (Sudhakar, 04/20)

The New York Times: Gut Healing is the latest trend from TikTok. Does it work?

Every few months, like clockwork, hundreds of videos promising tips and tricks to “hack” your gut flood TikTok. In March, influencers pushed shots of aloe vera juice: “My digestive system, like my gut health? Never been better,” one said in a video with a million likes while tapping on a purple bottle of the drink. Another, with the username “oliveoilqueen,” advocated drinking extra virgin olive oil every day in a video that has been viewed over 3.5 million times, saying it cleared her skin, made her her periods less painful and corrected her frequent bloating. Videos tagged with #guttok have garnered nearly 400 million views. They are full of suggestions for cucumber and ginger juice and boiled apples, bone broth in the morning and muddy sweet potato soup in the evening. (Blum, 04/20)

This is part of the KHN Morning Briefing, a summary of health policy coverage from major news outlets. Sign up for an email subscription.

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