Pat -- Wow, so it really was about permanent obesity vs disability!
I'm glad the authors discussed how the participants might not be like other people, even other morbidly obese people. Of course, that disclaimer didn't make it into Kolata's book.
SoulBliss -- I'm guessing they did it over the phone because the participants weren't local and that was the easiest way to reach them. You raised some excellent questions about the questions themselves...
I often find that when you ask the question "How did they measure it?" that you often find more questions are raised.
My conclusion about this particular study is that, without replication, I can't take it too seriously as representing the views of morbidly obese people. I would be curious to see how it replicated and whether people who opt for surgery (and are successful) are different from others.
But what's interesting is that this research was presented in the book as a "classic" study, and it doesn't feel that way to me. But look at what we had to do to figure that out!
What do others think?? Am I being too critical here of this description as a "classic"?
My 5 C's of healthy living: Commitment to conscious control, with the understanding that choices have consequences