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Book Review: The Destination Of Overeating

The End of Overeating was written based on the personal journeying of Dr. David A. Kessler (MD) to sympathise the obesity epidemic, in addition to care for his ain obesity inwards the process.  Dr. Kessler was the FDA commissioner nether presidents George HW Bush in addition to Bill Clinton.  He is known for his efforts to regulate cigarettes, in addition to his interest inwards modernizing Nutrition Facts labels on packaged food.  He was also the dean of Yale medical schoolhouse for half-dozen years-- a really accomplished person. 

Dr. Kessler's volume focuses on 1) the might of nutrient amongst a high palatability/reward value to displace overeating in addition to obesity, 2) the systematic efforts of the nutrient manufacture to maximize nutrient palatability/reward to increase sales inwards a competitive market, in addition to 3) what to create well-nigh it.  He has non merely done a lot of reading on the subject, but has also participated straight inwards nutrient vantage query himself, in addition to then he has existent credibility.  The End of Overeating is non the green diet book. 

As yous may realize if you've been next this weblog for a while, I intend nutrient vantage is a major determinant of nutrient intake in addition to a contributing gene to obesity.  It's cracking to run into a volume that tackles the topic inwards the pop press, making it accessible to nearly anyone. 

Dr. Kessler starts out past times making the representative that sugar, common salt in addition to fatty displace overeating, in addition to that much of the nutrient manufacture is based closed to finding new ways of packing to a greater extent than of these iii ingredients into nutrient to maximize palatability.  He repeats an thought that is mutual inwards the nutrient vantage literature, that vantage in addition to pleasance circuits inwards the encephalon override circuits that are designed to stabilize torso fatty stores (body fatty homeostasis), establishing a higher 'settling point'.  I receive got a child quibble amongst this; my belief is that excessive vantage may partially override homeostatic circuitry, but it also re-regulates it to defend torso fatness at a higher degree (a hypothesis shared past times certainly other obesity researchers).  This may live i of the reasons why overweight/obese people 'defend' a higher fatty mass, making weight loss hard in addition to ofttimes destined for failure.

Influenza A virus subtype H5N1 minute occupation is that Dr. Kessler didn't create a practiced undertaking of clearly defining vantage in addition to palatability.  He seems to confuse palatability amongst vantage at times:
In everyday language, nosotros telephone outcry upwards nutrient palatable if it has an agreeable taste.  But when scientists tell a nutrient is palatable, they are referring primarily to its capacity to induce the appetite in addition to prompt us to consume more.  Palatability does involve taste, of course, but, crucially, it also involves the motivation to pursue that taste.  It is the argue nosotros desire more.
Actually, I believe the showtime judgement had it right.  Palatability is the hedonic, or pleasance value of food.  The motivation to pursue food, "the argue nosotros desire more", is due to the reward or reinforcing value of the food.  As far every bit I know, those are the accepted scientific definitions, although some people create role the term vantage to a greater extent than broadly to include hedonic value*.  The 2 concepts are admittedly slow to confuse, because they overlap in addition to inwards do ofttimes move together.  I receive got to believe that Dr. Kessler understands what vantage in addition to palatability are, but he does non bring that agreement effectively inwards the book. 

Another quibble I receive got is that he focuses likewise persistently on sugar, fatty in addition to salt.  These are clearly major vantage factors, but in addition to then are calorie density, certainly textures, costless glutamate, starch in addition to a few others.  In addition, many other cues (particularly flavors) run rewarding every bit they are associated amongst those factors.  Some of these are mentioned or implied (except starch, a major omission inwards my opinion), but the volume is focused primarily on sugar, fatty in addition to common salt throughout.  I suspect he wanted to run along it uncomplicated for clarity's sake, but that conclusion did sacrifice some sum of completeness. 

The volume goes into considerable item well-nigh the remarkable scientific discipline of nutrient applied scientific discipline past times processed nutrient manufacturers.  The goal, every bit i executive bluntly set it for Dr. Kessler, "is to acquire yous hooked", past times creating nutrient stimuli that induce vantage circuits every bit much every bit possible.  It's a scientific discipline in addition to an art, where refined ingredients in addition to synthetic flavorings are the palette they role to pigment foods.  One of the cracking strengths of the volume is the large release of interviews Kessler did amongst nutrient manufacture executives-- in addition to the candid data they provided.  The End of Overeating is worth the encompass cost for that alone. 

In the latter business office of the book, Kessler provides practical advice for fatty loss based on the nutrient vantage ideas.  It to a greater extent than ofttimes than non revolves closed to learning how to wean yourself off junk food, using an approach similar to drug rehab strategies.  I intend in that location are a lot of useful ideas there, but some people may demand a to a greater extent than focused in addition to comprehensive strategy to regain leanness inwards my opinion.

Influenza A virus subtype H5N1 lastly gentle critique is that the volume is non really focused or good organized.  It ofttimes rambles on amongst long written report descriptions, quotes in addition to redundant information.  I intend it would receive got been to a greater extent than effective if it were a concise in addition to focused 200 pages (the volume was 320).  It would receive got benefited from a thorough in addition to assertive editor.

Overall however, I liked the book.  It contains a lot of practiced data in addition to practical advice from a credible source, in addition to to my noesis it's the merely volume focused on nutrient vantage inwards the pop press.  I recommend it to anyone who wants to expand their noesis on nutrient reward, in addition to the means inwards which the processed nutrient in addition to eating seat industries employ it.  I've added it to my listing of recommended books inwards the sidebar.

Melissa McEwen also commented on The End of Overeating here.  


*By this definition, vantage has a hedonic (pleasure) component, a motivational component, in addition to a learning component.  Researchers sometimes telephone outcry upwards the motivational in addition to hedonic elements "wanting" in addition to "liking", respectively (1).  I may switch to this Definition at some point, because it's widely accepted in addition to easier than proverb "reward" in addition to "palatability" separately every fourth dimension I desire to call these ideas.
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