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Quick Studies


Fat in an Expectant Mother’s Diet May Shape Baby’s Gut Microbiome

To equip an unborn baby with a healthy gut microbiome, new research suggests that mama might want to pass on the fries.

Quick Studies


For Most Self-Proclaimed Dieters, There’s No Diet at All

New research from the Netherlands shows that about 60 percent of people claim to be dieting, but very few actually do it.

The Things We Eat


A Roadkill Revolution: Eating Animals to Liberate Them

A philosopher argues that if there are viable ways to reduce intentional harm to animals by eating them—and there are—then all vegetarians who subscribe to the “do-the-least-harm” principle should be obligated to make roadkill a part of their diet.

Sociological Images


The Sexual Politics of Veganism

Veganism is too often presented as little more than a means of achieving idealized body types.

But It's Just a Game


Running a Marathon Takes Guts, but They Better Behave

The power of dietary rituals on the streets of Boston.

The 30 Top Thinkers Under 30


The 30 Top Thinkers Under 30: The Global Ideas Institute Leader Who Wants to Solve Food Insecurity Around the World

For the month of April we’re profiling the individuals who made our inaugural list of the 30 top thinkers under 30, the young men and women we predict will have a serious impact on the social, political, and economic issues we cover every day here at Pacific Standard.



When It Comes to Eating Right, Laziness Can Be Your Friend

New research finds one bad habit we’re often tagged with (sloth) can help us overcome another (overeating).

You Don't Know America


What Makes American Cuisine American?

At its essence, American food began as a cuisine of survival free from the burdens of tradition and elitism. Little has changed.



Irony in Our Diets: Stigmatizing Obesity Increases Overeating

New research suggests anti-obesity campaigns that stigmatize heaviness may be counterproductive.



The Buffet Line Can Be Your Friend

It all depends on whether the food is presented in an optimal order, with healthy selections first.



Fat-urday: When Eating What You Want Is Cheating

If “cheat days” are built into diets, is it really cheating? It’s time to ditch the term and all its dubious implications.



It’s Not Just All of the People Around You That Are Getting Fatter

Research reveals that animals are gaining weight, too.



World’s Oldest Living Human Found, Not in the Usual Place

Are freak longevity cases more about record-keeping than genetics, diet, or exercise?



A Very Weighty Decision

The American Medical Association has officially labeled obesity a disease, but we still don’t know enough about the problem to be sure it fits the established definition.


Robert Lustig

Is Sugar the Next Tobacco?

It will be if Robert Lustig has anything to say about it.


Reading in fancy library

To Stay Thin, Eat Like the Cultural Elite

New research finds an association between lower body weight and participation in cultural and intellectual activities, including reading.



Calm Down, Step Away From the Burger

A new study links trans fats – already under fire for a variety of dietary ills – with grouchiness.


‘Fair Trade’ Chocolate Perceived as Healthier

For many consumers, the label “fair trade” promotes the inaccurate assumption that a chocolate bar is lower in calories than its competitors.


FDA Cracks Whip on Lap-Band Marketing

An industry that’s grown up around a promising way to help people caught in a web of obesity needs to make a few less promises, the FDA declares.


Applying Healthy Skepticism to Healthy Foods

When superfoods like blueberries, pomegranates, açai, green tea sound a little too amazing, it might be time to take a closer look.


How Should We Evaluate Lap-Band Candidates?

Allergan lowers BMI requirement and raises questions about its effectiveness and appropriateness.


The Farm School: Growing Organic Farmers

At The Farm School, students learn the nuts, bolts and economics of organic farming, and the spiritual side isn’t ignored, either. Garlic plantings may get blessed.


Dietary Guidelines Include a Helping of Politics

Every five years, the U.S. government bravely tries to nudge Americans toward a healthier diet while not ticking off purveyors of less-desirable foods.

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Sufferers of Social Anxiety Disorder, Your Friends Like You

The first study of friends' perceptions suggest they know something's off with their pals but like them just the same.

Standing Up for My Group by Kicking Yours

Members of a minority ethnic group are less likely to express support for gay equality if they believe their own group suffers from discrimination.

How Old Brains Learn New Tricks

A new study shows that the neural plasticity needed for learning doesn't vanish as we age—it just moves.

Ethnic Diversity Deflates Market Bubbles

But it's not in the rainbow and sing-along way you'd hope for. We just don't trust outsiders' judgments.

Online Brain Exercises Are Probably Useless

Even under the guidance of a specialist trainer, computer-based brain exercises have only modest benefits, a new analysis shows.

The Big One

One company, Comcast, will control up to 40 percent of Internet service coverage in the U.S., and 19 of the top 20 cable markets, if a proposed merger with Time Warner Cable is approved by regulators. November/December 2014

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