June 1, 2017

THE WEIGHT LOSS TRAP

Alexandra Sifferlin’s June 5 cover story on the science of dieting prompted many readers to share their own struggles with losing weight. The article “hit a nerve” with Harold Jacobson, 72, of Macomb, Mich., who said he’s been struggling to keep his weight in check for the past 20 years. “The truth about weight loss is that most Americans fall for quick-fix gimmicks,” said Ana Hotaling of Chelsea, Mich., who noted that she shed pounds without touching diet pills, powders, shakes or subscription meals. Wayne Williams of Adelphi, Md., wondered why the article didn’t mention the ubiquity of processed food in today’s American diet, while several bariatric surgeons wondered the same about surgical treatments for obesity. Meanwhile, Steven Lowrance of West Lafayette, Ind., pointed out that the “thoughtful” examination of the science behind healthy weight loss doesn’t exist in a vacuum: the very same issue featured a positive review of the new Baywatch movie and the anything-but-everyday physiques it puts on display. “The irony,” he wrote, “was as delicious as it was sad.”

THE JFK CENTENNIAL

“Rarely does journalism intersect with literature as vividly as in David Von Drehle’s View piece,” wrote Richard Agins of Chandler, Ariz., in response to Von Drehle’s June 5 reflection of the 100th anniversary of John F. Kennedy’s birth. JFK’s words remain timely, added Helen Eschenbacher of Temple, Ga., who emphasized his message about the U.S.’s role in the world and its relevance when “being global is the only way to think in the 21st century.” Meanwhile, Bob Taylor of Portales, N.M., had a different takeaway from the article: “America can be great again,” he wrote, “when most of her citizens believe their government is doing the right things.”

STATE OF RUIN

TIME’s photo team asked eight photojournalists documenting Venezuela’s ongoing governmental and economic crisis to share the image they found most moving. Manaure Quintero chose this picture, above, of a tear-gassed woman in Caracas in April because it shows that “people who used to be afraid to demonstrate, the older generation, are now in the streets.” See all the photos at time.com/venezuela-photographers

PICTURING HEALTH

A new video explores advances in the treatment of Parkinson’s in the years since 1959, when legendary photographer Margaret Bourke-White (above) gave LIFE a deep look at her own experience with the disease. Watch it at life.time.com

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This appears in the June 12, 2017 issue of TIME.

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