Welcome to the inaugural episode of our medical research review, News Per Rectum!

Swanky new original theme music is courtesy of our maestro Samix.

The first article we discuss hails from that most respected of medical journals, Time Magazine. Nature, nurture, whatever…the discussion gets all Jerry Springer when Dr. Harry calls me fat and I accuse him of being Chinese (he insists that he is, in fact, Taiwanese). In our defense, I assert that this type of heated intellectual melee is typical of most medical discourse at academic institutions. Granted, in those settings the debate is usually definitively settled with fisticuffs and hepatitis-infected syringe duels.

The second article comes from that journal of miniature adult medicine, Pediatrics. It reports an association between obese children and past infection with a particular virus responsible for some colds. Rather than properly parse this data, which establishes association but not causality (that is, there’s no evidence yet that the virus actually causes kids to become fat), we follow path of least resistance to the conclusion that obesity is an infectious disease and as such cannot be blamed on one’s personal choices to shun exercise and eat McRibs all day.

Of note, prior studies of this virus have demonstrated that it may affect fat storage and the number of fat cells one develops as a child. I envision–if this research pans out–a day when parents of overly scrawny kids ship them off to sleep over at Chubby Chuck’s house in an attempt to “catch fat.” Having shopped as a child at the “husky” boys section in Mervyn’s (I miss you, ToughSkins saggy plumber jeans), let’s just say my house would have been a popular health spa destination for cachectic kids looking to gain some extra lbs.

The third piece of news comes from an abstract presented at a European conference and reviewed by Medpage Today. Definitely click the link and watch the associated video if you want to ruin all future meals you may ever consume. Leave it to those darned Socialists in the EU to share both the wealth and the stool. If one is to believe the videos circulating on the internet, the Germans have been sharing feces for years. Enjoy!

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