The Singapore Story, Part 2

November 15, 2013
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Yesterday, Childhood Obesity News discussed the Trim and Fit program that had been in place in Singapore schools since 1992, in which overweight children were required to do extra physical education activities and have their caloric intake monitored wh …

The Singapore Story

November 14, 2013
Leave a Comment tells us that the island city-state contains more than 4,500 food and beverage establishments, “from hawker stalls to fine dining restaurants.” About 14% of tourist expenditure winds up in the bank accounts of these eateries. Forme …

Some Thoughts About Carnie Wilson

November 13, 2013
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Carnie Wilson is worth thinking about because she is iconic. She’s talented, upfront and a real trooper who may be one of the hardest-working women in show business. “Relatability” is a very important quality in the entertainment world, and plus-size w …

Famous Food Addict Carnie Wilson Revisited

November 11, 2013
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A while back, Childhood Obesity News traced the career of singer and actor Carnie Wilson as a professional obese person — unfortunately, that seems to be the role the media have assigned her. As an aspiring artist, she almost certainly never intended …

Childhood Obesity and Games, Part 10

November 8, 2013
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At age 14, Taylor LeBaron weighed nearly 300 pounds. His accomplishment was to cut his body weight in half; his goal is to help other young people do the same. He became a college student and, on the side, a motivational speaker. Daisy Dumas of the Dai …

Childhood Obesity and Games, Part 9

November 7, 2013
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Dance Dance Revolution isn’t exactly Grand Theft Auto, but is a game in the sense that a player accumulates points by hitting spots on a special mat, according to the directions issued by a video console. Back in 2010, researchers at West Virginia Univ …

Childhood Obesity and Games, Part 8

November 6, 2013
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Yesterday, Childhood Obesity News mentioned a study originating from the George Washington University School of Public Health and Health Services in our nation’s capital. Among other things: The study’s authors suggest that vigorous video games may hav …

Childhood Obesity and Games, Part 7

November 5, 2013
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For MedPage Today, Todd Neale wrote about an Australian study of active video games, which concluded that: Removing all video games from the home or replacing traditional video games with active video games both resulted in small improvements in physic …

Childhood Obesity and Games, Part 6

November 4, 2013
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Last time, we ended up by mentioning some exergames that adults like. The combination of video-based games and exercise may seem a bit strange to a public that has become accustomed to thinking of video games as a childhood obesity villain. But Cynthia …

Childhood Obesity and Games, Part 5

November 1, 2013
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We have been talking about Zamzee, not to either endorse this particular system or diss it. It’s an interesting example of the gamification of obesity, and the subject cannot be abandoned without noting one of the features of the system. Kids whose act …

Childhood Obesity and Games, Part 4

October 31, 2013
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Holiday note: Remember, Halloween doesn’t have to be a caloric disaster. All parents are invited to revisit the Childhood Obesity News posts dated October 4, October 7, and October 8 for support and validation, and maybe even some fresh ideas. Happy Ha …

Childhood Obesity and Games, Part 3

October 30, 2013
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Yesterday, two video clips were included in the post, to make the point that getting some exercise indoors, by imitating the actions of a character in a video game, is preferable to no exercise at all. (And good luck to the downstairs neighbors.) Here …

Childhood Obesity and Games, Part 2

October 29, 2013
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Yesterday, Childhood Obesity News mentioned how Boston Children’s Hospital discovered that television is more of a childhood obesity villain than other types of electronic screens. Actually, it’s not the TV itself but the concentrated attention, which …

Childhood Obesity and Games

October 28, 2013
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Dr. Pretlow has observed that medicine doesn’t embrace the Internet as a means of care or research. As days go by, this becomes less of an obstacle. Acceptance creeps in around the edges and even the upper echelons of establishment medicine begin to ge …

Academic Activism in Calgary and Connecticut

October 25, 2013
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The BMO Financial Group maintains a huge presence in both Canada and the United States, and includes three operating groups — one for banking, one for financial management, and one for investing. With financial assets in the neighborhood of $550 billi …

More on the Toxic Food Environment

October 24, 2013
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Harvard University’s School of Public Health has definite ideas about what it calls the toxic food environment in the United States, and it sees food marketing as one of the major problem areas. A huge amount of money is spent each year by corporate in …

The Toxic Food Environment

October 23, 2013
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What happens when The Huffington Post gets together with Harvard to examine the toxic food environment? To see the video discussion, this page is the place. The basic rationale for the conversation goes like this: Historically, conventional wisdom has …

Horace Fletcher’s Prophetic Legacy, Part 2

October 22, 2013
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Childhood Obesity News mentioned a Wall Street Journal article in which the president of a “food flavor and texture company” explained the psychological appeal of chewable snacks: Crunchy foods may provide stress-relief, like hitting a racquetball afte …

Horace Fletcher’s Prophetic Legacy, Part 1

October 21, 2013
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“Mastication or Castigation” was the title of a previous Childhood Obesity News piece introducing Horace Fletcher, and soon, after some remarks about his significance, we will bid him farewell. There was more to his philosophy than just the idea that f …

Disparate Strands Pulled Together

October 18, 2013
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To recapitulate: American historical figure Horace Fletcher preached the chewing of food into a state of liquefaction, as an aid to digestion and general well-being. Though he was for a time discredited, recent science has shown that there are indeed n …

Pulling Together Some Disparate Strands, Part 3

October 17, 2013
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By now it is almost universally acknowledged that there is such a thing as “eating your stress,” and that a lot of people do it. They tend to choose foods that maximize the amount of work their jaws need to do. Popcorn, potato chips, toffee, breakfast …

Pulling Together Some Disparate Strands, Part 2

October 16, 2013

From time to time, Childhood Obesity News explores such concepts as process addiction, displacement activity, and body-focused repetitive behaviors. Discussing the evidence for the reality of food addiction, Dr. Pretlow has said, about one of its aspec …

Pulling Together Some Disparate Strands

October 15, 2013
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Yesterday we closed with Mahatma Gandhi and Jesus Christ both advising their followers to chew each bite of food into a liquid state. We have also talked about Horace Fletcher, the writer and lecturer who espoused the same rule. In the late 1800s and e …

Another Point for the Crackpots, Part 2

October 14, 2013
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Childhood Obesity News has been discussing the ideas of Horace Fletcher and more recent responses to fletcherizing. Fletcher’s ideas were wildly popular and widespread, then forgotten and discredited, and he was perceived as kind of a wingnut. In recen …

Childhood Obesity: Another Point for the Crackpots

October 11, 2013
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Yesterday we outlined the beliefs of Horace Fletcher, whose system of chewing food until it was liquified, known as fletcherizing, transformed his own life and, reportedly, the lives of those who followed his ideas. The U.S. Government flirted with the …

Mastication or Castigation

October 10, 2013

“Nature will castigate those who don’t masticate.” How’s that for a catchy slogan? It was created by dietician Horace Fletcher, one of those historical crackpots who turned out to be right about a few things. In other words, yesterday’s weirdos sometim …

Marc Maron’s Childhood Obesity Connection

October 9, 2013
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At the LA Podfest, which convened this past weekend, Christy Harrison spoke with comedian and actor Marc Maron, whose IFC comedy series is going into a second season. (The interview is 11 minutes long and contains explicit language.) While not as famou …

Get the Jump on Halloween!

October 8, 2013
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Last October, Dr. Pretlow was interviewed by another website for an article titled, “How’s this for scary, kids: Little or no candy on Halloween.” One of the interesting points made in the article was that the American Dental Association polled a bunch …

An Early Start on Halloween

October 7, 2013
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Halloween can be a horror for an overweight kid. It’s all about doing the exact thing she or he is not supposed to do — acquire and consume a bunch of sweets. But it’s also a lot of fun, and why take away any potential fun by skipping the holiday alto …

Childhood Obesity Halloween Prep

October 4, 2013
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Let’s get an early start on Halloween this year, shall we? Before we start buying candy for parties and trick-or-treat, stop and take a breath and plan ahead. Because when a Web post shows up the day before Halloween, no matter how many great alternati …

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Profiles: Kids Struggling with Weight

Profiles: Kids Struggling with Obesity top bottom

The Book

OVERWEIGHT: What Kids Say explores the obesity problem from the often-overlooked perspective of children struggling with being overweight.

About Dr. Robert A. Pretlow

Dr. Robert A. Pretlow is a pediatrician and childhood obesity specialist. He has been researching and spreading awareness on the childhood obesity epidemic in the US for more than a decade.
You can contact Dr. Pretlow at:


Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the American Society of Animal Science 2020 Conference
What’s Causing Obesity in Companion Animals and What Can We Do About It

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the World Obesity Federation 2019 Conference:
Food/Eating Addiction and the Displacement Mechanism

Dr. Pretlow’s Multi-Center Clinical Trial Kick-off Speech 2018:
Obesity: Tackling the Root Cause

Dr. Pretlow’s 2017 Workshop on
Treatment of Obesity Using the Addiction Model

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation for
TEC and UNC 2016

Dr. Pretlow’s invited presentation at the 2015 Obesity Summit in London, UK.

Dr. Pretlow’s invited keynote at the 2014 European Childhood Obesity Group Congress in Salzburg, Austria.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2013 European Congress on Obesity in Liverpool, UK.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2011 International Conference on Childhood Obesity in Lisbon, Portugal.

Dr. Pretlow’s presentation at the 2010 Uniting Against Childhood Obesity Conference in Houston, TX.

Food & Health Resources