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Maintenance Phase

Author: Aubrey Gordon & Michael Hobbes

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Debunking the junk science behind health fads, wellness scams and nonsensical nutrition advice.
17 Episodes
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Special guest Mike Rothschild tells us how the road to wellness can be an on-ramp to a conspiracy theory. Along the way we debunk oil pulling, explore Instagram aesthetics and bemoan anti-vaxx argumentation tactics . Mike gets the date of the January 6th insurrection wrong and he is sorry. Mike Rothschild is on Twitter and you can pre-order his book here!Support us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPalGet Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreThanks to Ashley Smith for editing assistance and Doctor Dreamchip for our lovely theme song!Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
This week is our first  Diet Book Deep Dive, where we dig into some of the worst and wildest weight loss advice we can find.  First up: Tonight Show sidekick Ed McMahon's pun, alcohol and misogyny-fueled diet plan from the 1970s. Hope you like broiled steak and Sanka!Clips!Ed McMahon & Britney Spears on Star SearchEd McMahon for American Family SweepstakesSupport us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPalGet Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreThanks to Lynn Barbera for editing assistance and Doctor Dreamchip for our lovely theme song!Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
Olestra

Olestra

2021-04-1301:05:4510

 In 1996, Proctor & Gamble launched an artificial fat substitute that promised all of the taste but none of the calories. There was just one problem. Support us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPalGet Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreLinks!Marion Nestle’s The Selling of OlestraJeffrey Steingarten's The Man Who Ate EverythingThe 1996 Federal RegisterThe Trouble With FriesReduction of the body burden of PCBs and DDE by dietary intervention in a randomized trialReview of the effects of dilution of dietary energy with olestra on energy intakeAuthors’ Financial Relationships With the Food and Beverage Industry and Their Published Positions on the Fat Substitute OlestraPostmarketing Surveillance of New Food Ingredients: Results from the Program with the Fat Replacer OlestraEffects of wheat bran and olestra on objective measures of stool and subjective reports of GI symptomsThe effect of ingesting olestra-based foods on feeding behavior and energy balance in humansEffect on Body Weight of Replacing Dietary Fat with Olestra for Two or Ten Weeks in Healthy Men and Women Thanks to Ashley Smith for editing assistance and Doctor Dreamchip for our lovely theme song!Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
Eating Disorders

Eating Disorders

2021-03-3055:308

Fat people have them too! This week, special guest Erin Harrop tells us about one of America's most under-diagnosed and misunderstood problems. Along the way we talk about elbow bumps, Twitter etiquette and '90s sweatpants. Our content warnings are becoming increasingly threatening.Here's Erin's faculty page and a bunch of her research!Support us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPalGet Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreThanks to Mitra Kaboli for production support and Doctor Dreamchip for our lovely theme song!Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
Weight Watchers

Weight Watchers

2021-03-1650:4311

Get your flex point calculators and food scales! This week, Mike and Aubrey are talking about one of America's most iconic diet programs: Weight Watchers. Along the way, we encounter The Rock, the mating habits of straight people and a new James Bond villain. Support us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPalGet Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreLinks!Jean Nidetch, a Founder of Weight Watchers, Dies at 91 Mass Firing on Zoom Is Latest Sign of Weight Watchers Unrest Weight Watcher's Kurbo app slammed for targeting kids. Makers defend it What's gone wrong at Weight Watchers? Weight Watchers Is Offering Teens Free Memberships and People Aren't Happy Americans’ new way of losing weight has left Weight Watchers behind How the Oprah effect helped Weight Watchers regain Americans' trust Deal Master Debbane The Population Cost‐Effectiveness of Weight Watchers with General Practitioner Referral Compared with Standard Care Weight Watchers on prescription: An observational study of weight change among adults referred to Weight Watchers by the NHS The Problem With 'Fat Talk' 'Fat Talk' Compels but Carries a Cost Thanks to Ashley Smith for editing assistance and Doctor Dreamchip for our lovely theme song!Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
The Master Cleanse

The Master Cleanse

2021-03-0247:3317

Are your moods too stable? Is your face free of cold sores? Get your lemon juice, maple syrup and cayenne pepper ready, because this week we're talking about celebrity favorite THE MASTER CLEANSE!Along the way we roast New Atheism, praise Gwyneth Paltrow (!) and endorse garbanzo bean salads. Mike wishes to clarify that he adores Kate Bush and quips with the utmost affection.Support us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPal Get Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreLinks!:The Master Cleanser by Stanley BurroughsI Heard It Through the Diet Grapevine (New York Times)Improving Ourselves to Death (The New Yorker)Cleansing's Dirty Secret (Marie Claire)Mr. Clean: Jeffrey Steingarten Puts the Master Cleanse to the Test (Vogue)The Dubious Practice of Detox (Harvard Health)Thanks to Ashley Smith for editing assistance and Doctor Dreamchip for our lovely theme song!Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
Dr. Oz

Dr. Oz

2021-02-1655:3810

This week we're dissecting "America's Doctor." How did a smart, hardworking surgeon become one of TV's leading purveyors of junk science?  Along the way we debunk green coffee bean extract, raspberry ketones, conversion therapy (!) and a salad dressing skincare regimen.Support us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPalGet Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreLinks:Transcript of the infamous Congressional hearingThe Making of Dr. OzColumbia and the Problem of Dr. OzThe FTC lawsuit against green coffee bean extract sellersThe Oz craze: The effect of pop culture media on health careThe BMJ content analysis of the Dr. Oz showAgeing, fitness and neurocognitive functionReal-world doctors fact-check Dr. Oz, and the results aren't pretty Dr. Oz may be America's most influential — and controversial — physician Thanks to Ashley Smith for editing assistance and Doctor Dreamchip for our lovely theme song!Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
Snake Oil

Snake Oil

2021-02-0249:049

The world of dieting and wellness is full of so-called snake oil salesmen—but what IS snake oil? This week, we take a wild ride through the history of health scams and discover a startling twist about an everyday idiom. Along the way, Aubrey delivers fun facts about sanitation from memory and Mike roasts the state where most of his family lives. Support us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPalGet Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreLinks:Snake Oil, Hustlers & Hambones by Mary AndersonA History Of 'Snake Oil Salesmen' : Code Switch (NPR)How Snake Oil Got a Bad Rap (Hint: It Wasn’t The Snakes’ Fault) (Collectors Weekly)Thanks to Ashley Smith for editing assistance and Doctor Dreamchip for our lovely theme song!Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
The Biggest Loser

The Biggest Loser

2021-01-1954:197

This week we dissect the content and impact of one of America's most harmful TV experiments.   Support us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPal Get Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreLinks! Aubrey’s article on The Biggest Loser That's not reality for me': Australian audiences respond to the Biggest Loser "Cheapening the struggle:" obese people's attitudes towards the Biggest Loser The Effects of Reality Television on Weight Bias: An Examination of The Biggest Loser'It's a miracle no one has died yet': The Biggest Loser returns, despite critics' warningsThe Retrograde Shame of The Biggest LoserAnalysis of all contestantsNeoliberalism And The Realities Of Reality TelevisionThe “Reality” of Health: Reality Television and the Public HealthLife after NBC's "The Biggest Loser": The Experiences and Perspectives of Former Reality TV Contestants Thanks to Ashley Smith for editing assistance and Doctor Dreamchip for our lovely theme song!Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
Halo Top Ice Cream

Halo Top Ice Cream

2021-01-0545:119

WE’RE BACK! A new diet ice cream is taking your grocery store by storm. But what even is it? This week, Mike and Aubrey talk biohacking, dieting for straight dudes and the extremely ill-advised "Halo Top diet."Support us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPal Get Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreLinks!What is biohacking? The new “science” of optimizing your brain and body. (Vox) Halo Top Is Now the Most Popular Pint of Ice Cream in America (Food and Wine) What It's Like to Eat Nothing but This Magical, Healthy Ice Cream for 10 Days (GQ) Is Halo Top Good For You? The Truth About Low-Calorie, Low-Fat Ice Creams (HuffPost)Seven in 10 young people would eat whole tub of low-cal ice cream (The Grocer UK)Thanks to Ashley Smith for editing assistance and Doctor Dreamchip for our lovely theme song!Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
Anti-Fat Bias

Anti-Fat Bias

2020-11-2454:2917

To celebrate the release of her new book, Aubrey takes Mike on a tour through the statistics and debates surrounding weight bias. Anyone interested in body positivity, airline seats, 'skinny shaming' or the sugar content of melons is legally obligated to join us.Support us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPal Get Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreGet Aubrey's book in the U.S.:Powell's BooksBookshop.orgBeacon PressBuy from your local bookstore on IndieboundGet Aubrey's book outside the U.S.Thanks to Doctor Dreamchip for our lovely theme song!Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
The Twinkie Defense

The Twinkie Defense

2020-11-1749:207

The Twinkie Defense has become a shorthand for disingenuous legal defense strategies. But was it disingenuous? (Yes, but not in the way you think!)Thanks to Ashley Smith for editing assistance and Doctor Dreamchip for our lovely theme song!Support us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPal Get Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreLinks!Mike's "Victim's Rights" episode on his other show!The Trial of Dan White: The Diminished Capacity ("Twinkie") DefenseHarvey Milk: His Lives and DeathThe Myth of the Twinkie Defense: The Verdict in the Dan White Case Wasn’t Based on His Ingestion of Junk FoodPsychiatric Testimony and the Insanity DefenseCalifornia’s Proposition 8 (1982)Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
Moon Juice

Moon Juice

2020-11-1057:4210

What's that Gwyneth Paltrow's drinking? It's MOON JUICE! This week, we're talking adaptogens, brain dust, hot sex milk and the wellness company that's taken L.A. by storm. Be sure to take your quinton shots before you listen to this one.Thanks to Ashley Smith for editing assistance and Doctor Dreamchip for our lovely theme song!Support us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPal Get Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreLinks!:How Hollywood's Favorite Juice Bar Owner Eats Every Day (Elle)How Amanda Chantal Bacon Perfected the Celebrity Wellness Business (NYT)What Are Adaptogens? (NYT)Wellness Brand Moon Juice Has Plenty of Haters - And Its Founder is Cool With That (Entrepreneur)The Moon Juice Gospel of Self (The New Yorker)How Wellness Got Whitewashed (Glamour)Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
Snackwell's Cookies

Snackwell's Cookies

2020-11-0356:319

They hit the market in 1992. Three years later, they were the best-selling cookie in America. This week, Mike and Aubrey dive into the low-fat craze of the 1990s and sample the snack that became the symbol of its rise and fall.  Support us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPal Get Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreLinks! How the Ideology of Low Fat Conquered America “Eat More, They’re Healthy”Anthology of “Cookie Man” ads“What if It’s All Been A Big Fat Lie?”“Ending the War on Fat”  Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
Fen Phen & Redux

Fen Phen & Redux

2020-10-2751:389

Fen-Phen & Redux were "the next miracle drugs" in the '90s, claiming to help people lose dramatic amounts of weight in just three months.  But within a few short years, they'd been pulled from the market.  They were just too effective! (Just kidding, they killed some people.)Support us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPal Get Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreLinks! Dispensing with the Truth by Alicia MundyThe New Miracle Drug (Time Magazine)How Fen-Phen, A Diet 'Miracle,' Rose and Fell (the New York Times)Blowing the Whistle on Fen-Phen (Journal of Business Communication)Purdue OxyContin settlement would rank among largest in pharma history (Reuters)National Trends in Antiobesity Medication Use (JAMA Network)The Fen-Phen Finale: A Study of Weight Loss and Valvular Heart Disease (Obesity Research)Thanks to Doctor Dreamchip for our lovely theme song!Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
The shuttle run! The flexed arm hang! The v-sit reach! These terms are seared into the memories of an entire generation of American schoolchildren. But did the President's Physical Fitness Test actually make us fitter?  (Spoiler: lol no)Thanks to Ashley Smith for editing assistance and Doctor Dreamchip for our lovely theme song!Support us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPal Get Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreLinks! The Report That Shocked The PresidentJFK’s Sports Illustrated article, “The Soft American”1958–2008: 50 Years of Youth Fitness Tests in the United StatesThe President's Council on Physical Fitness and the Systematisation of Children's Play in AmericaWhy is there so little critical physical education scholarship in the United States? The case of FitnessgramThe Modern Era: Blossoming of the Olympic Movement and the Conquest of Acute DiseaseThe President's Council on Physical Fitness and Sports: The First 50 YearsDo Fitness Test Performances Predict Students’ Attitudes And Emotions Toward Physical Education?Support the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
What's Our Deal?

What's Our Deal?

2020-10-1156:5811

Welcome to Maintenance Phase! In our first episode, we tell our origin stories and talk about some of the basic ideas behind the show. Here's where to find us:Aubrey: https://www.yourfatfriend.com/Mike: https://rottenindenmark.org/Thanks to Ashley Smith for editing assistance and Doctor Dreamchip for our lovely theme song!Support us: Subscribe on PatreonDonate on PayPal Get Maintenance Phase shirts, stickers and moreSupport the show (https://www.patreon.com/maintenancephase)
Comments (51)

lynn

this episode is some scary shit

May 15th
Reply

Shannon Compton

The clip of Ed talking to Britney Spears about having a boyfriend made me cringe. I have a 7 year old daughter and I have heard people ask her about having a boyfriend and I hate it so much. It is super nasty too because it already sets up this idea of worth being tied to attractiveness. So gross.

Apr 27th
Reply

alli lent

hey I was a 9 lb 12 oz baby and that didn't cause me to be overweight.. that didn't happen until the stress and alcohol of college

Apr 27th
Reply

Heidi M. Fanning

Ed insinuats that wives kill their husbands with the food they feed them. Michael: "What would these foods be Ed?!" Two apples, obviously. 😂

Apr 27th
Reply

Haley B

I won't change so you should change. I don't want to be uncomfortable so you should be uncomfortable.

Apr 24th
Reply

Katherine Thomas

Another great podcast. Everyone should be listening to this.

Apr 21st
Reply

Rebecca Henderson

Interesting as always. Surprised (and generally disgusted) to hear that the "anal leakage" is much less than for other synthetic foods. As a non-US national it's a weird eye opener learning what "foods" can be sold there.

Apr 13th
Reply

average dinosaur

I realize it's fashionable to rag on gluten-free diets, but you should be aware that a certain percentage of the population has a genuine gluten intolerance. I had terrible fatigue, brain fog, sleep apnea and high blood pressure for years before I tried cutting wheat out of my diet. I couldn't work and took 2-3 naps a day. I was 30 pounds overweight (and yes, I wanted to lose weight because I felt absolutely ghastly). I was only 40 years old. That's all resolved now. My blood pressure normalized within a week. The sleep apnea disappeared. Recently I had wheat again accidentally and the same symptoms returned. I couldn't think clearly and had to take a nap on a beautiful day. It isn't all a fad. I was on my way to serious health problems before I changed my diet. I'm still low carb. It works for me and has worked for many others.

Apr 13th
Reply

lynn

insanity! my favorite show <3

Apr 13th
Reply

average dinosaur

Japan eats only fish? Hell no. They love their beef.

Apr 13th
Reply

Shannon Compton

I remember in middle school a friend actually told me that his mom was thinner than mine which....somehow meant that he was better than me? Its these kind of messages that just ruin a woman's brain. My mom now in her 50s still hyper focuses on her weight and judges me for lack of thin ability.

Apr 9th
Reply (2)

average dinosaur

you don't have to buy bulletproof coffee. i used to make it. i felt amazing. you can also make bulletproof tea. unfortunately I realized that i can't tolerate dairy or stimulants. i'm still low carb and far healthier than i was seven years ago.

Mar 31st
Reply

lynn

holy shit, just now realizing I had orthostatic hypotension when I was a teenager, never understood why I was always passing out

Mar 30th
Reply

DrRayTay

The GQ guy probably also got headaches from sugar withdrawals.

Mar 28th
Reply

ABR

I'm that weight and have NONE of the health issues mentioned. I'm the super-special 1 in 1,000... but only in the warped mind of Jillian Michaels! 😂

Mar 24th
Reply

ABR

Long-time fan of You're Wrong About... really enjoyed the bonus episodes over there, so I'm pumped to dive into this podcast! Loving it so far.

Mar 24th
Reply (1)

Karen Campbell

I can remember my mother coming home from a Weight Watchers meeting with a plastic pig because she had gained weight since the last meeting. Everyone who had gained weight had to stand in the middle of the room and sing: "I'm in the pigpen I'm in disgrace I 'm so ashamed I can hardly show my face."

Mar 18th
Reply (4)

ana adams

as a canadian I have always thought the "presidents fitness test" tested the fitness of the president to ensure they are "fit" to "run the country". i still thought it was ridiculous... but for completely different reasons 😂. #TheMoreYouKnow

Mar 18th
Reply

alli lent

if people care about health of children: -encourage physical activity in healthy way -rework what gym class is so physical activity is not humiliating for half the class -have home ec classes to teach them easy ways to cook healthy food don't tell them they're fat and teach them to count calories 🤦🏼‍♀️

Mar 17th
Reply

lynn

amazing!

Mar 2nd
Reply
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