Is Obesity Caused By Politics?

05/09/13 Robert Lorei
Radioactivity: Live Call-In (Thursday) | Listen to this entire show:


Good morning, welcome to Radioactivity. I’m Rob Lorei.

Coming up we’ll talk with a doctor who thinks that our obesity epidemic has a political cause.

But first- several listener comments about yesterday’s program. Yesterday we had two guests on the whole hour who were experts on gun violence. Here’s what several listeners had to say afterward, and there’s a comment about yesterday’s Democracy Now.


The obesity rate in the US is skyrocketing . Almost 36% of Americans are now obese according to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention. In addition 70% of Americans are either officially overweight or obese. These numbers have climbed steeply since the early 1980’s. Our next guest is Doug Kihn, he’s a Doctor of Oriental Medicine in Los Angeles. He’s a licensed acupuncturist. In an article this month for Truthout he says the underlying causes for the American obesity epidemic are economic and political.

He joins us now.


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I'm getting upset listening to Doug Kihn. I'm disagreeing with most of what I'm hearing. One thing makes us fat: Insulin. Carbs raise insulin. It's just that simple. Wheat is the biggest source of our carbs and cutting that will take care of most of that. I'm never hungry because I don't eat wheat, which is addictive.

I'm in disagreement with most conclusions and recommendations of his article. Instead of a point by point discussion, I'll take on one point and I'll put a link to a talk that makes much more scientific sense than what is in his article. It is political in that the McGovern committee that created the food pyramid in the 70s put us on the path of obesity. They ignored the science known even then, that what makes us fat is: insulin. Instead, they told us eating fat was bad and we should eat more carbs. They were wrong. Carbs raise insulin. Wheat is the biggest source of carbs in our diet. Wheat is addictive. The article touched on the fact that "brain scans on seven overweight people found that the regions of the brain that controlled satiety of food were the same regions that light up for drug addicts after a fix". But the article failed to state that the source of the chemical that binds to the opiate receptors is the gliadin from wheat. Read the book: 'Wheat Belly'. I stopped eating wheat and lost weight, and I'm no longer hungry, nor do I crave any of the wheat foods (it surprised me too). Why We Get Fat - Gary Taubes at OSUMC