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Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Is It Time To End The ‘Diet Debates’?

Shoppers peruse the produce section at The Fresh Grocer supermarket in West Philadelphia. (Coke Whitworth/AP)

Shoppers peruse the produce section at The Fresh Grocer supermarket in West Philadelphia. (Coke Whitworth/AP)

Comparing diets is something of a national pastime in America: pitting the Atkins Diet against the Paleo Diet against the South Beach Diet. It also extends into medical research.

But a provocative new paper in the Journal of the American Medical Association says researchers should stop comparing diets altogether.

Instead, it suggests researchers shift their focus to how to change behavior — forever.

Carey Goldberg, health reporter at WBUR and co-host of its Commonhealth blog, spoke to the lead author of the paper, Sherry Pagoto.

“We need to understand the key to adherence — and it does not appear to be the content of the diet,” Pagoto said. “It’s more of the context of the dieter.”

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Robin and Jeremy

Robin Young and Jeremy Hobson host Here & Now, a live two-hour production of NPR and WBUR Boston.

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