Recap: The health and wellness news you may have missed this weekend

This past weekend, the New York Times went on a juice cleanse, dishing out more wellness-focused stories than usual. We share them all in bite-size servings.
adult playground
A playground for adults! (Photo Credit: Marilynn K. Yee for the New York Times)


This past weekend, the New York Times went on a juice cleanse. Okay, not really, but there were an inordinate number of wellness-focused stories, on everything from how quickly personal training is growing as a profession to how to host a dinner party for your vegan, gluten-free friends.

In case you were too busy beach lounging to pick up a copy of the gray lady (or even an iPad), we summarize the many healthy stories here:

1. All calories are not created equal. Gary Taubes, author of “Why We Get Fat,” summarized the results of a new study published in the Journal of the American Medical Association (JAMA) that examined the calorie-in, calorie-out assumption. Study participants were fed equal-calorie diets. The finding: Those who ate the most carbohydrates lost the least weight over a one-month period. Meaning that when it comes to weight loss, calories are not all that matters—our bodies metabolize calories differently depending on the food. A big leap for medicine!

2. Personal training boom. One job that hasn’t been hit hard by the recession? Personal training. Catherine Rampell reported that the number of personal trainers in the U.S. grew by 44 percent between 2001 and 2011. The most surprising fact in the story, however, was the pay rate. “For personal trainers, the median hourly wage is less than $15,” Rampell wrote. Ouch.

3. Adult playgrounds. We already have indoor fitness playgrounds galore (we call them Flywheel, Barry’s Bootcamp, and Refine Method). But now, New York City’s parks are hosting adult monkey bars and more. The first adult playground is already in place in the Bronx, and the city “plans to bring as many as two dozen more to neighborhoods across the five boroughs in the next 18 months,” Winnie Hu reported. Outdoor boot-camp and other trainers are probably jumping up and down at the prospect of these free workout spaces.

4. Picky eaters. “It’s becoming harder for Americans to break bread together,” wrote Jessica Bruder, especially if said bread is not gluten-free or vegan. Bruder’s story looked at the many dietary restrictions that separate friends and family at the dinner table, and asked questions about whose responsibility it is—the host or the hosted—to accommodate lactose-intolerant, soy-free, and paleo diets. What do you think? Tell us, in the Comments, below!

5. Wellness wedding bells. Ab-centric yogi Hilaria Thomas, Yoga Vida’s director of yoga, married Alec Baldwin Saturday night at St. Patrick’s Cathedral. Thomas (now Baldwin!) tweeted that Physique 57 got her in wedding-dress shape, and that she ate at healthy hotspot Angelica Kitchen the night before. We’re surprised she didn’t choose Pure Food & Wine, since the raw-food restaurant is where the happy couple met.

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