TheCommodore
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Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 12:38 am

This obesity problem appears to be getting worse, especially in the US where obesity levels are set to rise to 75%of the population by 2020, another 10 years!

That figure is truly shocking and one which the Government should be highly alarmed about. With the cost of health care skyrocketing in the US, this is only going to make matters worse for everyone.

Action needs to be taken now, with Government intervention the only way forward IMHO.New taxes need to be put on junk /fast food and fresh food, eg, fruit etc needs to be made more accessible to the general population, without it things are only going to get worse.

The figures speak for themselves, Governments, not only in the US but all over the world, need to take control of this because its been proven that you cant leave it up to the general population to self regulate on junk food intake. If the price of these junk food items were to increase substantially, them I'm sure less people would be inclined to purchase them, opting for the healthier "cheaper" alternative instead.

What are your thoughts ?

http://www.smh.com.au/world/american...-obesity-table-20100924-15qmu.html
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Okie
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 12:48 am

Quoting TheCommodore (Thread starter):
Action needs to be taken now, with Government intervention the only way forward IMHO


A resounding NO.
Not the governments job.
Cuba has government intervention, an agricultural country that fed itself and exported now has to import 80% of its food with government intervention. Now there is a success story.

Okie
 
TheCommodore
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 12:59 am

Quoting okie (Reply 1):
Now there is a success story.

Whats the obesity rate like in Cuba then ?

Quoting okie (Reply 1):
Not the governments job.

Well if its not the Governments job to look after the welfare of its citizens, because as the figure themselves say the general pop cant or wont self regulate eating habits, then what ?
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Quokka
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 1:15 am

Hey, I heard a report on the news a few months ago that claimed that Australians had taken over the role of being the world's most obese.

I am not sure if taxation is the best way to go. I remember a lot of noise in the UK when VAT was added to take-away foods. It hasn't had a dramatic effect on sales there. Of course cigarettes are heavily taxed in Australia, but you still get a lot of idiots lighting up, despite all the gory warning labels. Alcohol is also heavily taxed, but binge drinking has risen dramatically in recent years.

The problem with taxation is that it is like a drug. The more taxes the government raises, the more they want and Governments then have little to gain from stopping the source of their revenue, and that's happened with tobacco, alcohol and is likely to happen with junk foods.
 
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Aaron747
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 1:22 am

Quoting TheCommodore (Thread starter):
Action needs to be taken now, with Government intervention the only way forward IMHO.New taxes need to be put on junk /fast food and fresh food, eg, fruit etc needs to be made more accessible to the general population, without it things are only going to get worse.

FUNDAMENTALLY disagree. There are community gardening initiatives, farmers' markets, and the like available in most US locales with significant population. The healthy food is there - the problem is people are not choosing to eat it. Part of the problem is cost, yes, but another is effort and the demands of our time-crunched lifestyle. As a country we need to have a serious conversation about what being healthy means and what we are willing to do to achieve it. Weight problems typically start early and physical activity levels are far too low - parents need to get their kids playing outside again and STOP THEM from spending hours on the computer and video game consoles from age 5 through leaving for college - it's just ridiculous.

If people get serious about their health (and most people are not until a doctor tells them they are teetering on the edge) and demand for healthier foods increases, those prices will come down in due time. Eating better requires dedication and consistent effort - it's not just a matter of money. Most people would find that eating better is actually more cost-effective if done right. I make turkey sandwiches on 10-grain bread with avocado and mustard and the cost to put those together a few times a week are far lower than eating out every day.

The other component is community based - people generally eat what their friends, family, and people around them eat. Until that changes, you can throw all the rules and whatever you want at the problem and nothing will change. All more regulation will do is increase costs for everyone, and that doesn't help anything.
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NoUFO
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 1:25 am

Basically the only thing a government could do is to make sure that kids at school are exposed to healthy food, not only to vending machines. Junk food and assoziated health risks should be a topic in class.

Other than that, influence of the government should be strictly limited i.e. to ensure proper labeling. Juice is juice and not some sugary stuff.
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Okie
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 1:25 am

Quoting TheCommodore (Thread starter):
New taxes need to be put on junk /fast food and fresh food,


The argument that taxing people to discourage them from eating fresh food and junk food is really good one.
That is exactly what they want to do to businesses and people who work and are successful, tax them to discourage business and prevent hard workers from becoming successful.
Wonderful analogy there works good for any debate on taxes.

Speaking of which of all the ideas on taxes, tax this, tax that, why has the alcohol industry been immune to tax increases.
If you want to decrease use and increase tax revenue, how about a $1.00 per bottle/can of beer, $5.00 for a bottle of wine, may be $15 or $20 for a liter of liquor.

Okie
 
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Aaron747
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 1:34 am

Quoting okie (Reply 7):
Speaking of which of all the ideas on taxes, tax this, tax that, why has the alcohol industry been immune to tax increases. If you want to decrease use and increase tax revenue, how about a $1.00 per bottle/can of beer, $5.00 for a bottle of wine, may be $15 or $20 for a liter of liquor.

Cigarettes too - still boatloads of smokers here in Hawaii, where a carton easily goes for $75.
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Okie
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 2:10 am

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 8):
Cigarettes too - still boatloads of smokers here in Hawaii, where a carton easily goes for $75.


I believe that was the first order of business of the Obama administration, I think they increased taxes like $2 per pack, which is why cigarettes are $75 per carton. It got a lot of play since Obama was still smoking, not sure if he still is.

Next thing you know they will want to tax unauthorized orgasms, you will have to get government approval to have one.

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TheCommodore
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 2:15 am

Quoting Quokka (Reply 4):
Of course cigarettes are heavily taxed in Australia, but you still get a lot of idiots lighting up, despite all the gory warning labels. Alcohol is also heavily taxed, but binge drinking has risen dramatically in recent years.

Recent reports show that with the recent tax hikes smokers are kicking the habit and the new alco pop tax was lifted by a massive 70%.

That has to have had some effect on younger drinkers and any improvement is better then none IMHO  
Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 5):
There are community gardening initiatives, farmers' markets, and the like available in most US locales with significant population. The healthy food is there

Well the take up rate doesn't seem to be catching on real quick, as the report says the problems are getting worse not better and this is with farmers markets and the like as well as a more and more organic food being grown. The problem with organic here is cost, most people just cant afford the extra $$$ for it and walk away buying cheaper instead.

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 5):
As a country we need to have a serious conversation about what being healthy means and what we are willing to do to achieve it. Weight problems typically start early and physical activity levels are far too low - parents need to get their kids playing outside again and STOP THEM from spending hours on the computer and video game consoles from age 5 through leaving for college - it's just ridiculous.

Yes Yes and Yes

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 5):
(and most people are not until a doctor tells them they are teetering on the edge)

This has not just occurred overnight, what have doctors been telling their patients before ? Maybe part of the blame should be on doctors then, maybe telling their patients that they wont treat them unless they lose weight or stop smoking etc ...

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 5):
Most people would find that eating better is actually more cost-effective if done right.

Yes again, may people believe honestly that eating well cost a fortune so they opt for the junk instead. Dumb!

Quoting NoUFO (Reply 6):
Other than that, influence of the government should be strictly limited i.e. to ensure proper labeling. Juice is juice and not some sugary stuff.

Well in Australia there are so many different types of labeling its all very confusing. Example, a product may be labeled "made in Australia" but all the ingredients may come from china or somewhere else, most of the time you have NO clue at all. So to say Governments must do this has not helped.

Quoting okie (Reply 7):
The argument that taxing people to discourage them from eating fresh food and junk food is really good one.

You haven't answered my question.

Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 2):
Quoting okie (Reply 1):
Now there is a success story.

Whats the obesity rate like in Cuba then ?

Any ideas ?

Quoting okie (Reply 7):
That is exactly what they want to do to businesses and people who work and are successful, tax them to discourage business and prevent hard workers from becoming successful.
Wonderful analogy there works good for any debate on taxes.

Things must be bad in the US if that's honestly the case then.  
Quoting okie (Reply 7):
If you want to decrease use and increase tax revenue, how about a $1.00 per bottle/can of beer, $5.00 for a bottle of wine, may be $15 or $20 for a liter of liquor.

Isn't this exactly what I was saying, if you want to decrease consumption increase the tax ?

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 8):
Cigarettes too - still boatloads of smokers here in Hawaii, where a carton easily goes for $75.

Yes the rate of smoking may still be high, but overall smoking rates are dropping in the western world.
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Zentraedi
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 2:22 am

Targeting junk food will not be any miracle cure.

One of the biggest problems in the US is simply portion sizes. Just look at what your obese people in the US are eating. It's not one regular hamburger w/ regular fries and a lemonade. It's two ultra triple deluxes with a double order of fries and half a gallon of milkshake and/or carbonated sugar water. That's what makes people fat.

Even worse is the culture that encourages overeating as if it were some sort of competitive sport.
 
UH60FtRucker
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 2:25 am

Quoting okie (Reply 1):
A resounding NO.
Not the governments job.

I am one of the biggest limited government supporters on this forum. But in this case... I disagree.

Before all else, I do not think that taxation is the answer. Putting aside my loathing hatred of any tax.... the simple argument against such taxes is that they disproportionately target the poor, who are disproportionately fat. Taxing them would not rectify their poor health habits, and only serve to exacerbate their situation.

However, I do see an important role that the government could serve, here. First it's helpful to acknowledge that this is indeed, a national problem, which the national government is uniquely suited to address. Homegrown efforts - along the line of what Aaron suggested - are certainly helpful, but their impact is quite limited.

The biggest problem to addressing our national obesity problem will be to reverse the increasingly lazy and sedentary lifestyles, many lead. There is no way we could force people into the gyms. So I think that like so much else in life, the biggest key to this problem will be preemptive education at young ages. Too many physical fitness and sports programs have been cut, or are currently underfunded. Getting children into active lifestyles, is extremely important. The government can help lead the charge to restore robust physical fitness programs. The government can also push the school meals program into a more healthy and well rounded menu. Better catered food, that targets their menus towards low fat/low sugar options, would help. Additionally, health and nutrition classes from a young age, are very important.

And basically, local efforts are insufficient to meet those needs. The only true power in this game is the federal government. The government could really bring the money and leadership needed on this issue.
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PPVRA
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 3:00 am

Let's start by removing subsidies to fast food and Coca Cola. . . i.e., corn growers in Iowa.

And taxation/regulation will definitely not work. People will simply get their carb fix from elsewhere if Coke is forced to cut sugar by 50% and/or if their price triples.
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Aesma
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 3:19 am

Quoting Zentraedi (Reply 11):
Targeting junk food will not be any miracle cure.

One of the biggest problems in the US is simply portion sizes. Just look at what your obese people in the US are eating. It's not one regular hamburger w/ regular fries and a lemonade. It's two ultra triple deluxes with a double order of fries and half a gallon of milkshake and/or carbonated sugar water. That's what makes people fat.

Even worse is the culture that encourages overeating as if it were some sort of competitive sport.
Super Size Me was a revelation for me, I was jealous of that menu we don't get at the local McDo !  A few years before I went to Canada and already was surprized by the size of the sundae and McFlurry, I couldn't finish it, something that never happens to me.
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Pyrex
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 6:57 am

Quoting TheCommodore (Thread starter):
New taxes need to be put on junk /fast food and fresh food, eg

I agree, just as long as you make me, personally, the arbitrer of what is "good" and "not good" (basically, what I like and don't like). I am sure I could extract some decent campaign donations that way.

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 4):
parents need to get their kids playing outside again and STOP THEM from spending hours on the computer and video game consoles from age 5 through leaving for college - it's just ridiculous.

Problem is the US sports culture is so competitive in things it really shouldn't be (like high school and college sports) that it discourages people that suck at sports from doing any type of physical activity.

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 12):
Let's start by removing subsidies to fast food and Coca Cola. . . i.e., corn growers in Iowa.

Totally agree we should stop subsidies to farmers (in Iowa and elsewhere) but you also need to open the borders for cheap sugar from Brazil. Not sure what the net effect would be...
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Mudboy
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 7:01 am

I never paid much attention, until I started traveling the world. Us Americans are very obese, and it sickens me! In the states every town has a McDonalds, or a Sonic or a (fill in the blanks). Fast food is everywhere you look. And we have been taught, to clean or plate, and not waste food. The oxymoron, I have always found humor in, is people ordering an Big Mac extra value meal, with a Diet Coke!

What we accept as normal is 10-20 lbs overweight, and someone with a normal BMI ( Body Mass Index), we call skinny. I will say it is quite embarrassing when I see fat Americans overseas, compared to the Europeans.

I think that we have become lazy when it comes to preparing good meals, and exercising. We drive everywhere we go, and rather than spending time outside, we sit on the internet for hours and/or watch TV.

Since I have been with a European woman that is normal size, it has pushed me to eat right and exercise harder. I have always worked out, but cared more about bulk, than being lean, I have since changed. Diet is what you eat on a daily basis, not what you do to lose weight.

What I find humorus now, is when traveling anywhere except the states, I constantly am asked where I am from in Europe? When I tell them I am an American, they are shocked and I say, "why, because I am not fat" ? That always gets a good laugh!
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Zentraedi
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 7:32 am

Quoting Mudboy (Reply 15):
I have always found humor in, is people ordering an Big Mac extra value meal, with a Diet Coke!

Those soft drinks are a big part of the problem and often contain more calories than the actual meal. In fact, many Americans can lose weight by simply cutting sugary drinks out of their diet. I stopped drinking regular sodas in college and with no change in physical activity or the rest of my diet, I lost 15 pounds.
 
MD11Engineer
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 8:57 am

The extra large portions sold in many fast food outlets ARE a problem. Most of us have been conditioned since childhood to finish the food on our plates (remember the stupid stories about starving children in Africa?). It has been scientifically proven that people tend to ignore the signals from the stomach that it had enough, and continue eating until the eyes tell them that the food is finished. It is also a leftover from our ancestors, who, like most animals, ate as much as possible when there was food available, because they could never be sure when the next meal would arrive. They might well have to go several days without food.

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ozglobal
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 9:23 am

All this American talk of no government intervention over problems that affect the common good of society I find bizarre. The whole reason we organize ourselves with a government is to handle matters of the common good. People are no where near mature enough to behave in all of the positive ways required for a happy, healthy and sane society. Hence we have 'training wheels', laws, incentives and disincentives to improve the outcomes. Americans accept laws and taxes on cigarettes as it is obviously a question of the common good of society. Obesity is very similar. In France they noticed the appearance of obese children in primary school. There was a discussion and now junk food vending machines are banned by law within 200metres of a primary school. These kids are not mature enough to freely choose on this topic so the law serves a very valid purpose. Adult addicts of junk food and cigarettes a no more free than children in this matter. Leaving it to them OBVIOUSLY don't work. Tax food at a rate inversely proportional to nutritional value and you'll see a change of behaviour. Next step ban Super Size promotions (what is difference from cigarette advertising?). We must stop pretending we operate as a classical Greek democracy of philosophers and take a more realistic view of the general public and their degree of maturity.
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DocLightning
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 11:16 am

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 4):

If people get serious about their health (and most people are not until a doctor tells them they are teetering on the edge)

Hah! I've given a diagnosis of diabetes and hypertension to a 15yo and he's still uninterested in changing his lifestyle. I have a 17yo patient with a BMI of >50 who won't even walk around the block. My colleague has a patient so heavy the scale won't read her weight and she keeps demanding a scooter because she can't get around.
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Okie
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 2:07 pm

Quoting Mudboy (Reply 15):
The oxymoron, I have always found humor in, is people ordering an Big Mac extra value meal, with a Diet Coke!


That has always baffled Okie as well.
Give me the double super size with extra everything, pie sundae, and of course a diet coke.

Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 17):
The extra large portions sold in many fast food outlets ARE a problem. Most of us have been conditioned since childhood to finish the food on our plates (remember the stupid stories about starving children in Africa?).


Heard that too many times.

I had always been lead to believe that the normal stomach was about a pint. I generally look at my selection and figure that quantity/volume of food for a meal and never have counted calories, unless of course a special trip say to Ruth's Chris.

Okie
 
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Francoflier
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 2:21 pm

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 12):
Let's start by removing subsidies to fast food and Coca Cola. . . i.e., corn growers in Iowa.

Well, here's a topic on subsidies we absolutely agree on.  
Quoting Aesma (Reply 13):
Super Size Me was a revelation for me,

In this case, if you haven't seen it yet, I highly recommend Food Inc. Another eye opener.

The Food industry and food chain in America, although it is happening in various degrees of severity in other developed countries, is controlled in absolute by a handful of corporations who have extremely powerful lobbies in the government. It is quite scary.

Quoting Mudboy (Reply 15):
compared to the Europeans.

In all honesty, the problem might not be that bad in Europe, but it certainly doesn't have an examplary record either.

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 11):
So I think that like so much else in life, the biggest key to this problem will be preemptive education at young ages. Too many physical fitness and sports programs have been cut, or are currently underfunded. Getting children into active lifestyles, is extremely important. The government can help lead the charge to restore robust physical fitness programs. The government can also push the school meals program into a more healthy and well rounded menu. Better catered food, that targets their menus towards low fat/low sugar options, would help. Additionally, health and nutrition classes from a young age, are very important.

Agreed. Education is the answer here. It must come from parents as much as from schools. I don't know about funding of sport and physical fitness programs, but I have noticed that that government is quite active in campaigning against the lack of physical activity in children on TV ads in the US. I'm not sure what effect they have though, they look a bit cheesy.
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Aaron747
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 4:20 pm

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 19):

Hah! I've given a diagnosis of diabetes and hypertension to a 15yo and he's still uninterested in changing his lifestyle. I have a 17yo patient with a BMI of >50 who won't even walk around the block. My colleague has a patient so heavy the scale won't read her weight and she keeps demanding a scooter because she can't get around.

Not inspiring a lot of hope doc...perhaps TheCommodore is right about refusing further treatment. All of us are different though - one blood test with my LDL cholesterol over 150 when I was 23 was enough to get me to change how I was eating.

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 11):
The government can also push the school meals program into a more healthy and well rounded menu. Better catered food, that targets their menus towards low fat/low sugar options, would help. Additionally, health and nutrition classes from a young age, are very important.

Done on a massive scale, this would be fantastic, as well as getting all the vending machines out. But that would cost a lot of money. They'll need more kitchen staff in schools as well because one of the reasons cited for kids not eating vegetables is that they often steam them to save time and staff, which reduces them to tasteless mush.
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Kiwirob
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 5:36 pm

Quoting UH60FtRucker (Reply 11):
The government can also push the school meals program into a more healthy and well rounded menu. Better catered food, that targets their menus towards low fat/low sugar options, would help. Additionally, health and nutrition classes from a young age, are very important.



On tv we get the Jamie Oliver schools dinner program, this is the one he did in the US, it was amazing how negative the schools district was, the parents all came around, as did the principles of the schools but the district super responsible for the budget was against it on cost grounds, cheaper to feed the kids crap than to feed them healthy food. They forge that starting the kids down the unhealthy food road will lead to far more costs for society later on.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 19):
Hah! I've given a diagnosis of diabetes and hypertension to a 15yo and he's still uninterested in changing his lifestyle. I have a 17yo patient with a BMI of >50 who won't even walk around the block. My colleague has a patient so heavy the scale won't read her weight and she keeps demanding a scooter because she can't get around.



I'd be of mind to stop treating these people and let then eat themselves to death. Maybe for the morbidly obese insurance coverage and public heath care should be refused, let em die, survival of the fittest not the fattest.
 
LMP737
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 6:36 pm

Quoting TheCommodore (Thread starter):
Action needs to be taken now, with Government intervention the only way forward IMHO.New taxes need to be put on junk /fast food .


Cigarettes in the United States are heavily taxed yet people still smoke. Yes, the percentage of the population that smokes has gone down. However from knowing more than a couple people who smoked and quit the cost was not the main reason for doing so. The main reason were the health consequences. Having an extra thirty dollars per week in their pocket was an added benefit.

There's an another issue that is contributing to the obesity rates here in the states. That being the increasing level of sedentary lifestyle among children. Growing up I would spend my weekends running and playing with friends all day long. Now with the invention of home computers, the Internet, Play Station, X-Box etc kids are spending a lot more time planted in front of the computer or TV. How do you purpose the government address this issue?

Quoting TheCommodore (Thread starter):
fresh food, eg, fruit etc needs to be made more accessible to the general population,


Access to fresh fruits and vegetables is not an issue for most the population. Making the effort to consume it is.

Quoting NoUFO (Reply 5):
Basically the only thing a government could do is to make sure that kids at school are exposed to healthy food, not only to vending machines.


I totally agree. Some school districts in the US are having the vending machines removed from school property. When I was a kid the fat kid in class was a rarity. Now it's become more and more common to see kids waddling home from school.

Quoting Aaron747 (Reply 22):
Done on a massive scale, this would be fantastic, as well as getting all the vending machines out. But that would cost a lot of money.


What ever the cost maybe it probably still cheaper than the $150 billion it costs every year to treat obesity related illnesses.
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LMP737
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 6:56 pm

Quoting MD11Engineer (Reply 17):
It is also a leftover from our ancestors, who, like most animals, ate as much as possible when there was food available, because they could never be sure when the next meal would arrive. They might well have to go several days without food.

Unfortanetly our bodies are not designed for 24/7 access to food.
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Aaron747
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 9:16 pm

Quoting LMP737 (Reply 25):
Unfortanetly our bodies are not designed for 24/7 access to food.

Our breakfast/lunch/dinner cycle is not particularly healthy either as I've read most adults' metabolism assuming their other systems operate normally can only handle up to 600-700 calories a sitting. Think about the dinner most of us have end of day when we're hungry and it goes way over that. If our societies were more flexible about use of time, we would be eating smaller meals here and there that our bodies could handle more efficiently.
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mdsh00
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 10:11 pm

Government can't do much until people's attitudes change. In response to Doclightning's post, I've come across a patient with a BMI of 63...63!! That's TWO obese people! The problem arises when not only are many people unwilling to change their lifestyles, and a PC culture that keeps telling us that it's okay to be obese. I've had colleagues who have made their super obese patients cry just by giving them a frank discussion on their weight and the need to cut down. Seriously, who else but your doctor is going be most honest about these things?

Obesity is linked to high blood pressure, diabetes (and all of its complcations), high blood pressure, heart disease, cancer, arthritis, and more. It's already a huge burden on our medical system and will just keep getting worse unless we as a society stop forcing ourselves to celebrate obesity and act like overeating is not the problem. About 60% of the patients I come across have problems linked to their obesity, mostly self-inflicted.
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 10:12 pm

Quoting NoUFO (Reply 5):
Juice is juice and not some sugary stuff.

OK. You now have triggered a rant:
JUICE IS NOT HEALTHY. NOT EVEN 100% NATURAL ORGANIC JUICE. Don't try to bargain with me. Don't say that "oh, well this is all-natural and it's got the pulp and blah blah." JUICE IS NOT HEALTHY. NOT EVEN 100% NATURAL ORGANIC JUICE. I don't care if it was grown on a sacred mountain and picked by smiling elves and squeezed by hugging and then flown to you by doves to get to your table within 180 seconds of being picked. JUICE IS LOADED WITH SUGAR.

Know all that hullaboo about high-fructose corn syrup? Well fructose is fruit sugar. This website explains it beautifully:
http://www.hookedonjuice.com/

JUICE HAS AT LEAST AS MUCH SUGAR, BY VOLUME, AS COCA-COLA AND MOST OF THAT SUGAR IS FRUCTOSE.

To make one fluid ounce (30mL) of apple juice requires approximately one apple. So if you drink an 8 oz glass, guess what you just ate? Except you didn't get the fiber or most of the vitamins (they have to artificially add the vitamin C back in because much of it stays in the pulp).

Fruit juice is very healthful... if and ONLY if it is still in the fruit when you consume it. Otherwise FRUIT JUICE=SODA.

Oh, and watering down your kid's juice is the exact same thing as giving your kid watered-down soda.

So what should we be drinking? Well, I know this is alien and foreign and really radical (even communist), but my suggestion is to drink water.

Quoting KiwiRob (Reply 23):

I'd be of mind to stop treating these people and let then eat themselves to death.

Well, that's medical abandonment. Yes, it's tempting to stop treating patients who annoy you but it's part of the job.

A major contributor to obesity, IMHO, is the automobile. If you look at the cities that have access to good public transit, like New York, San Francisco, Chicago, DC you see much less obesity. If you look at the cities that have car-centered transit, like Detroit, Houston (the fattest city in the country, and probably the world), Dallas, etc. the people are all fat. Having to walk every day really does make a difference.
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 10:18 pm

Quoting NoUFO (Reply 5):
make sure that kids at school are exposed to healthy food

Yes, there is a British chef, I think his name is Jamie Oliver. Anyway. he has been over in I believe Huntington, West Virginia (America's obeseity capitol?) and has spent a lot of time and energy teaching people how to make healthy choices when it comes to food. When he got there he discovered the school system was serving horribly unhealthy foods for years and no one was stepping forward and questioning it.
He deserves a medal although I understand he took a lot of personal attacks by taking on the local "establishment".
I saw a show about it, maybe on Oprah.

From todays New York Times:

http://www.nytimes.com/2010/09/25/he...es.html?_r=1&src=ISMR_HP_LO_MST_FB

[Edited 2010-09-25 15:21:48]
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 10:36 pm

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 28):
JUICE IS NOT HEALTHY. NOT EVEN 100% NATURAL ORGANIC JUICE. Don't try to bargain with me.

*Sigh* I didn't even metion juice was healthy ...

You are right that juice contains a lot of sugar, almost as much as a (classic) Coke. But this

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 28):
FRUIT JUICE=SODA

is not true as juice does contain vitamins - as opposed to Coke.

We still have this campaign here in Germany called "5 a day" which promotes to eat 5 different sorts of vegetables and fruits a day. One glass of 100% juice counts as one apple or one pearl or a handful of grapes - whatever the juice is made of.

At the same time, juice should not be used to quench one's thirst. Water or water mixed with juice is much better in this respect.
As so often it's the amount that counts. A Coke, however, is never healthy.

The line "Juice is juice and not some sugary stuff" was directed at cheating consumers into believing they have bought (expensive) juice when they in fact have just bought some (cheap) sugary solution.
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 10:43 pm

Quoting ImperialEagle (Reply 29):
Yes, there is a British chef, I think his name is Jamie Oliver. Anyway. he has been over in I believe Huntington, West Virginia (America's obeseity capitol?) and has spent a lot of time and energy teaching people how to make healthy choices when it comes to food.
Quoting LMP737 (Reply 24):
Some school districts in the US are having the vending machines removed from school property.

Good news. I'm still looking for the country ranking list, as some other countries came pretty close to the U.S., most notably Britain and Australia if I remember correctly. Obesity is a plague in every western society. Even Japanese start growing in the wrong direction (and not only Sumo wrestlers).

Ok, here's one, albeit not the best I came across

http://www.oecd.org/document/35/0,33..._44315115_46064099_1_1_1_1,00.html

[Edited 2010-09-25 15:47:56]
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 10:53 pm

Quoting NoUFO (Reply 30):

is not true as juice does contain vitamins - as opposed to Coke.

Juice contains vitamin C, and vitamin C only. That vitamin C is added artificially back into the juice. On the ingredients list, it lists "apple juice, ascorbic acid." Ascorbic acid is the chemical name for Vitamin C.

FYI: many orange sodas also have 100% RDA of vitamin C. Coke makes a "Diet Coke Plus" product with vitamins added. Were it not "Diet" the only nutritional difference between that product and fruit juice would be the caffeine.

The modest vitamin content of fruit juice does not justify its consumption.

Quoting NoUFO (Reply 30):

We still have this campaign here in Germany called "5 a day" which promotes to eat 5 different sorts of vegetables and fruits a day. One glass of 100% juice counts as one apple or one pearl or a handful of grapes - whatever the juice is made of.

The same campaign in the US is heavily subsidized by the juice industry. They make money by fooling you into thinking their product is healthy.

Quoting NoUFO (Reply 30):

The line "Juice is juice and not some sugary stuff" was directed at cheating consumers into believing they have bought (expensive) juice when they in fact have just bought some (cheap) sugary solution.

And I am telling you as a Board-Certified pediatrician licensed to practice medicine in two states that ALL fruit juice is a sugary solution with some vitamins in it.

The AAP has lobbied the federal WIC (welfare food program for women, infants, and children) to remove juice from the list of supplied items. The juice lobby has kept it on the list. AAP policy is that pediatricians should specify on the WIC forms that juice should not be provided.

You should EAT your fruit (and food in general) and drink water.
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TheCommodore
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 11:08 pm

Quoting ImperialEagle (Reply 29):
Yes, there is a British chef, I think his name is Jamie Oliver. Anyway. he has been over in I believe Huntington, West Virginia (America's obeseity capitol?) and has spent a lot of time and energy teaching people how to make healthy choices when it comes to food. When he got there he discovered the school system was serving horribly unhealthy foods for years and no one was stepping forward and questioning it.
He deserves a medal although I understand he took a lot of personal attacks by taking on the local "establishment".
I saw a show about it, maybe on Oprah.

Yeah I think I read something about that in the paper a while ago now.

He was invited over to give advice on healthy cooking for school lunches but It didn't go down well at all, see link below.

http://www.dailymail.co.uk/tvshowbiz...rejects-healthy-eating-advice.html

And then watch this next clip, where kids have NO idea what the vegetable it is that he's holding up. Astounding !   

http://www.youtube.com/watch?v=bGYs4KS_djg


Quoting DocLightning (Reply 32):
Juice contains vitamin C, and vitamin C only. That vitamin C is added artificially back into the juice. On the ingredients list, it lists "apple juice, ascorbic acid." Ascorbic acid is the chemical name for Vitamin C.

I thought "Fresh" orange juice was full of "natural" vit C , not added afterward /

From Wiki a quote.

Additives

Some producers add citric acid or ascorbic acid to juice beyond what is naturally found in the orange. Some also include other nutrients such as calcium and Vitamin D, not found naturally in oranges. Low-acid varieties of orange juice are also available. Omega-3 is sometimes added to orange juice from fish oils.[7]

Here is the link.

http://en.wikipedia.org/wiki/Orange_juice
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NoUFO
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 11:18 pm

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 32):
Juice contains vitamin C, and vitamin C only. That vitamin C is added artificially back into the juice. On the ingredients list, it lists "apple juice, ascorbic acid." Ascorbic acid is the chemical name for Vitamin C.

I know that ascorbic acid is the chemical name for vitamin C, but it is not added back into the juice, sorry, at least not over here - with the exeption of multivitamin juice of which is frequently said that one should skip it. Nor is it the only vitamin or healthy ingredient, sorry. Juice can contain other vitamins such as riboflavine and folic acid.

I know you are a doc, but I have spoken to a couple of nutritionist, and they say that while juice is not the same as fresh fruits, it is healthy as long as you don't quench your thirst with it and best mix it with some water. Other sources say the same, but it is difficult to find sources claiming that juice was as unhealthy as soda pop .
Even red wine is healthy if consumed very moderately.

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 32):
The same campaign in the US is heavily subsidized by the juice industry.

Not here. It is paid for by the ministry of agriculture.
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 11:34 pm

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 28):
If you look at the cities that have access to good public transit, like New York, San Francisco, Chicago, DC you see much less obesity. If you look at the cities that have car-centered transit, like Detroit, Houston (the fattest city in the country, and probably the world), Dallas, etc. the people are all fat. Having to walk every day really does make a difference.

1. As a repeat Ironman finisher who was raised in Dallas and now resides in Houston, I take offense!

2. The climate in Dallas and Houston are a huge factor in low outdoor activity levels. It challenging - and often dangerous - to perform physical activity during daylight hours in the summer months. Even if you are not exercising, you become offensively drenched in sweat if you need to walk more than a half mile 6 months out of the year. It's just not an option to develop those cities in the same way as Chicago or San Fran. We have heat that can kill.

Quoting OzGlobal (Reply 18):
All this American talk of no government intervention over problems that affect the common good of society I find bizarre. The whole reason we organize ourselves with a government is to handle matters of the common good.

And my physical fitness has no bearing on the common good, and vice versa. The only remote claim you can make is that we all bear each other's healthcare costs. That isn't an argument to intrude on each other's private lives, it's an argument to re-structure our healthcare system so that individuals bear the responsibilities for their own actions. That is how a free society would solve the problem.

Quoting TheCommodore (Thread starter):
That figure is truly shocking and one which the Government should be highly alarmed about.

Perhaps you are not tuned-in to American politics of late, but if you utter the words "the Government should..." the next word better be "stop," or "not," or "never," so as to not flash boil the blood of the majority of likely voters. We are in no mood for a government of increased scope or intrusive powers, regardless of the so-called "public good."
 
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sat Sep 25, 2010 11:52 pm

Quoting NoUFO (Reply 34):
I know that ascorbic acid is the chemical name for vitamin C, but it is not added back into the juice, sorry, at least not over here

I'm pretty sure its the same here in Oz

Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 35):
And my physical fitness has no bearing on the common good,

What if your a drain on the health system because of your lack of activity ? Doesn't that effect then everyone ?

Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 35):
Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 35):
The only remote claim you can make is that we all bear each other's healthcare costs.

And isn't that enough of a claim to make.

Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 35):
That is how a free society would solve the problem.

But we live in a free society and the problem is only getting worse, not better.
I fail to see how your "free society argument" will sort this problem out by itself.

Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 35):

Perhaps you are not tuned-in to American politics of late, but if you utter the words "the Government should..." the next word better be "stop," or "not," or "never," so as to not flash boil the blood of the majority of likely voters. We are in no mood for a government of increased scope or intrusive powers, regardless of the so-called "public good."


I understands that most governments around the world are on the nose, and I'd imagine that the US government is not different.

Look, nobody really wants more government regulation in every day living, but sometimes government intervention can be a good thing rather than looked upon as a bad thing. And if the general population fail to respond to better healthier living then I feel it it better for all concerned it the Government steps in and regulates, if they don't then everyone suffers, not only the unhealthiest but also the healthy because they are then lumbered with increased cost. How can that be good ?
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sun Sep 26, 2010 12:41 am

Quoting OzGlobal (Reply 18):
All this American talk of no government intervention over problems that affect the common good of society I find bizarre. The whole reason we organize ourselves with a government is to handle matters of the common good.

Completely wrong. We set up government to stop people from stealing. Whether the perp is stealing someone's life, liberty, or property.

Quoting OzGlobal (Reply 18):
People are no where near mature enough to behave in all of the positive ways required for a happy, healthy and sane society. Hence we have 'training wheels', laws, incentives and disincentives to improve the outcomes.

That is just a despicable statement on so many levels.

And I suppose we need to vote to put people like you in power, since you're the chosen one who is mature enough to lead us immature sheeple out of our own demise.

Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 36):
What if your a drain on the health system because of your lack of activity ? Doesn't that effect then everyone ?

So first you force everybody into a system you want, then you systematically attack every single last right they have. How wonderful  
Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 36):
But we live in a free society and the problem is only getting worse, not better.
I fail to see how your "free society argument" will sort this problem out by itself.

Your unfree society argument means using coercion as a means to an end. I reject such a thing as even remotely acceptable. Coercion is something people are thrown in jail for.

Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 36):
How can that be good ?

It isn't, but neither is your proposal. The health system you propose has disadvantages and you need to deal with them. This sounds like Castro's order to send the military down to Cuban mines a few years ago to increase the worker's productivity. How can that be good?
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sun Sep 26, 2010 1:17 am

Quoting Zentraedi (Reply 10):
One of the biggest problems in the US is simply portion sizes. Just look at what your obese people in the US are eating. It's not one regular hamburger w/ regular fries and a lemonade. It's two ultra triple deluxes with a double order of fries and half a gallon of milkshake and/or carbonated sugar water. That's what makes people fat.

It's becoming a huge problem. NOBODY needs that damn "Supersize" stuff. But the answer bloody well better not be more gov't intervention. PEOPLE have to learn a little SELF-CONTROL and responsibility for their own actions. Simple concept really. All we really need to do as a civilization is teach it.

Oh, and did you see that the Italians lent Michaelangelo's David to the USA for a 6 month tour. The world famous statue started out like this.....



AND SIX MONTHS LATER, the USA returned this!!!!



[Edited 2010-09-25 18:19:21]
 
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DocLightning
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sun Sep 26, 2010 2:04 am

Quoting Zentraedi (Reply 10):

One of the biggest problems in the US is simply portion sizes. Just look at what your obese people in the US are eating. It's not one regular hamburger w/ regular fries and a lemonade. It's two ultra triple deluxes with a double order of fries and half a gallon of milkshake and/or carbonated sugar water. That's what makes people fat.

There's also a major philosophical problem with the U.S. that consumption is good.

It's not "manly" in the U.S. to worry about your waist size. A guy drinking a Diet Coke will often get made fun of by his friends. Get a bigger car that burns more fuel and drive it EVERYWHERE!!! Bikes are for sissies, hipsters, and kids. Real men eat MEAT! *grunts and scratches balls* Gimme BEER! Not one of 'em sissy light beers, I want a MAN'S beer!



Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 35):

1. As a repeat Ironman finisher who was raised in Dallas and now resides in Houston, I take offense!

Fact: Houston has the highest obesity rate in the nation within the city limits. You may take as much offense as you like, but the fact remains and the fact is not open to debate. Nor will the fact change if you are offended by it.

You are the exception, as am I, because you spend a fair amount of time each day exercising. To do so, we make sacrifices. I don't go out to the bar after work with my colleagues; I go swim.

Quoting NoUFO (Reply 34):

I know that ascorbic acid is the chemical name for vitamin C, but it is not added back into the juice, sorry, at least not over here

from http://www.motts.com/ContactUs/FAQ.aspx

Quote:
We add Vitamin C to our apple juice

I don't know about the juice in Germany, but if they do not add it, then there will be only insignificant amounts of Vitamin C in the juice. Mind you, I'm quoting sources... you haven't backed up any of your claims yet.

Quoting NoUFO (Reply 34):
know you are a doc, but I have spoken to a couple of nutritionist,

They're wrong, then. They need to look at the same sources I've cited here on this website. The information is readily available.

Quoting NoUFO (Reply 34):
Other sources say the same, but it is difficult to find sources claiming that juice was as unhealthy as soda pop .

I've just quoted a few. Hell, motts.com has the nutrition information on the site. Of course, they've carefully buried in in the "registered nutritionists" section.

Juice has as much sugar as most commerically available sodas, if not more. Juice consumption in any amount has never been shown to be superior to fruit consumption. Juice consumption of more than two 6oz (180 mL) servings per day is associated with increased obesity and dental caries. The small amount of vitamin C in a serving of juice (20-40% of RDA) must be artificially added and does not justify the high fructose sugar load. Juice does not have many of the benefits of fruit because many of the water-soluble nutrients including antioxidants and fiber remain in the pulp.

Quoth the American Academy of Pediatrics:

Quote:

Most issues relevant to juice intake for infants are also are relevant for toddlers and young children. Fruit juice and fruit drinks are easily overconsumed by toddlers and young children because they taste good. In addition, they are conveniently packaged or can be placed in a bottle and carried around during the day. Because juice is viewed as nutritious, limits on consumption are not usually set by parents. Like soda, it can contribute to energy imbalance. High intakes of juice can contribute to diarrhea, overnutrition or undernutrition, and development of dental caries.

Believe it or disbelieve it as you wish.
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TheCommodore
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sun Sep 26, 2010 2:21 am

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 37):
Completely wrong. We set up government to stop people from stealing. Whether the perp is stealing someone's life, liberty, or property.

What ?

Set up and elect a government for "stealing" Maybe in Brazil but I can assure you its very different in the rest of the world.

Governments are elected on a multitude of platforms from education, social well being, health and many many more issues.
But to say that Governments are set up to stop people stealing is one of the most bizarre things I've ever heard of.   


Quoting PPVRA (Reply 37):
Your unfree society argument means using coercion as a means to an end. I reject such a thing as even remotely acceptable. Coercion is something people are thrown in jail for.

Well as I've said your free society is eating itself to death. It is NOT self regulating and I fail to see how you think it is/or will.

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 37):
It isn't, but neither is your proposal. The health system you propose has disadvantages and you need to deal with them. This sounds like Castro's order to send the military down to Cuban mines a few years ago to increase the worker's productivity. How can that be good?

WE are not talking about changing the health care system, its about obesity and how to stop it. what has that got to do with how the health care system works ?

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 37):
This sounds like Castro's order to send the military down to Cuban mines a few years ago to increase the worker's productivity. How can that be good?

Does this have anything to do with what were talking about, obesity ?
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sun Sep 26, 2010 2:43 am

Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 40):
What ?

Set up and elect a government for "stealing" Maybe in Brazil but I can assure you its very different in the rest of the world.

Governments are elected on a multitude of platforms from education, social well being, health and many many more issues.
But to say that Governments are set up to stop people stealing is one of the most bizarre things I've ever heard of.

Really? You never heard that the most basic idea behind government is to protect people's rights from those who infringe? Like throwing murders in jail, for example. That is why we form governments.

Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 40):
Well as I've said your free society is eating itself to death. It is NOT self regulating and I fail to see how you think it is/or will.

It doesn't appear the the stomachs in regulated societies are being successfully reigned in, either. They are growing in size constantly. ANd don't forget that smoking is much more tightly regulated in Europe, but the US actually has less smokers. Education works, regulation doesn't.

Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 40):
WE are not talking about changing the health care system, its about obesity and how to stop it. what has that got to do with how the health care system works ?

It has to do with the statement you made and to which I was replying.

Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 40):
Does this have anything to do with what were talking about, obesity ?

What I did there was point out similarities of two unlike things. In other words, an analogy.
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sun Sep 26, 2010 2:50 am

Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 9):
Recent reports show that with the recent tax hikes smokers are kicking the habit and the new alco pop tax was lifted by a massive 70%.

That has to have had some effect on younger drinkers and any improvement is better then none IMHO

Apparently not: Alcopop tax fails to curb teenage drinkers

As with obesity, it's far too complicated a problem to be able to solve it (or even to begin to influence a postitive outcome) with a tax. A tax on fast foods/junk foods would be shotgun policy, nothing more. Problems such as these require major cultural shifts, as already noted by a few people above.

It's not necessarily a question of accessibility either. I live in what is meant to be the 'foodie' capital of the nation - fresh produce is abundant and relatively cheap (perhaps with the exception of meat). Good food is around every corner. But fast food doesn't require as much effort - a 'luxury' for which I suspect many would still fork over their money, despite any tax related increases.
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sun Sep 26, 2010 3:11 am

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 41):
Really? You never heard that the most basic idea behind government is to protect people's rights from those who infringe? Like throwing murders in jail, for example. That is why we form governments.

Ah, but you didn't say that did you. you were going on about "stealing". And that's ALL you mentioned.

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 41):
It has to do with the statement you made and to which I was replying.

Sorry, but I cant see where I ever mentioned changing the US health care system ?

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 41):
It doesn't appear the the stomachs in regulated societies are being successfully reigned in, either.

Really, I'm not 100% sure about that. Do you have ant sources to back that up ?

I looked up Wiki and found that a 1% tax increase on sugar based drinks may reduce consumption by up to 25%, so I'm sure that the same could be said if it was increased on other junk food products too.

Here in Australia the tax on smokes has skyrocked and has had an effect on peoples habits, especially on the younger generation where money is limited to a greater extent.

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 41):
but the US actually has less smokers. Education works, regulation doesn't.

Really, I found this on the web from the US.
http://articles.latimes.com/2009/aug/23/science/sci-junk-food-tax23

Sounds good to me !

Quoting bookishaviator (Reply 42):
Apparently not: Alcopop tax fails to curb teenage drinkers

Well I think we need to wait a little longer before we take to much attention to 1 or 2 surveys. Changing peoples eating/drinking/smoking patterns takes many many years

Quoting bookishaviator (Reply 42):
Problems such as these require major cultural shifts, as already noted by a few people above.

And a tax will do just that.

Look at how taxes changes peoples ideas on investing their hard earned money. A good example might be, super or capital gains tax on how long you hold shares in your portfolio. Tax has a massive effect of peoples habits, it just takes time.

Quoting bookishaviator (Reply 42):
It's not necessarily a question of accessibility either. I live in what is meant to be the 'foodie' capital of the nation - fresh produce is abundant and relatively cheap

Not sure where you live in OZ, but the cost of fresh fruit and veg in Sydney had gone through the roof, due largely to the drought and floods etc. where as I turn on the TV and see ad's from maccas and the like offering cheaper and cheaper "meal Deals" !
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sun Sep 26, 2010 3:20 am

Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 43):
Ah, but you didn't say that did you. you were going on about "stealing". And that's ALL you mentioned.

Actually. .

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 37):
Whether the perp is stealing someone's life, liberty, or property.

Stealing someone's. . .

life = murder
liberty = slavery
property = theft

Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 43):
Quoting PPVRA (Reply 41):
It doesn't appear the the stomachs in regulated societies are being successfully reigned in, either.

Really, I'm not 100% sure about that. Do you have ant sources to back that up ?
http://www.ukmedix.com/weight-loss/obesity-eu-problem.cfm

It's a global problem. The fattest countries are actually small pacific island nations, even ahead of the US.

Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 43):
I looked up Wiki and found that a 1% tax increase on sugar based drinks may reduce consumption by up to 25%, so I'm sure that the same could be said if it was increased on other junk food products too.

That sounds highly dubious.
"If goods do not cross borders, soldiers will" - Frederic Bastiat
 
TheCommodore
Topic Author
Posts: 3458
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sun Sep 26, 2010 3:38 am

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 44):
Actually. .

No actually about it.

Here is what you said

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 37):
Quoting OzGlobal (Reply 18):
All this American talk of no government intervention over problems that affect the common good of society I find bizarre. The whole reason we organize ourselves with a government is to handle matters of the common good.

Completely wrong. We set up government to stop people from stealing. Whether the perp is stealing someone's life, liberty, or property.

I'll say it again. Governments aren't set up purely to stop people stealing from each other. There are many more reasons, some far more important issues than just stealing.

Read this.

http://www.canterbury.nsw.gov.au/www...1266-why-do-we-need-government.asp

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 44):
The fattest countries are actually small pacific island nations,

Where there is hardly ANY government at all, its a total free for all.
A friend of mine exports "lamb flaps" from NZ to Tonga, by the container load, 2 per month, the guy makes a fortune selling this crap (highly fatty meat that domestic markets wont consume)

There is NO tax at all on these products in Tonga. If there were, it would not be nearly as lucrative as it is I can assure.
“At first, they'll only dislike what you say, but the more correct you start sounding the more they'll dislike you.”
 
bookishaviator
Posts: 225
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sun Sep 26, 2010 3:49 am

Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 43):
Well I think we need to wait a little longer before we take to much attention to 1 or 2 surveys. Changing peoples eating/drinking/smoking patterns takes many many years

Sure, but they're valid results conducted over a three year period which might give a reasonable indication as to the ongoing success (or otherwise) of the tax and its intended effect. On your second point I think we agree, but that's also why I don't believe a tax is the best answer, as opposed to education.

Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 43):
Not sure where you live in OZ, but the cost of fresh fruit and veg in Sydney had gone through the roof, due largely to the drought and floods etc.

Again it's a question of what takes more effort. Shopping for fresh produce at my local Coles is generally going to be more expensive than heading to my local market to buy my fruit and vegies. But is it more convenient to do all my shopping underneath the one roof? Of course it is (not that I do, mind). I'm not convinced that making Macca's as 'expensive' as a bag of vegies is necessarily going to drive people to fresh produce, or that it's the 'only way forward', as mentioned in your opening post. Sure, it's an option, but I think people instead need to be convinced of the long term benefits of healthy eating and exercise... which is a mammoth task. But it can work. The 'Life. Be In It.' campaigns of the late 70s and early 80s, for example, were hugely successful.

And before you make the point, I fully appreciate that a tax on fast foods could help to fund such an education campaign.  
Quoting TheCommodore (Reply 43):
where as I turn on the TV and see ad's from maccas and the like offering cheaper and cheaper "meal Deals" !

This points more to the ability of clever advertising to influence society than anything else. Eating fresh food and cooking your own meals is cheaper than eating fast food. I should know, I've tried both. Over the course of, say, a week, it's amazing how much money can be saved from eating fresh, despite the drought related price increases you mention - this is what I mean by saying that fresh produce is relatively cheap.
When I die, when I die, I'll rot. But when I live, when I live, I'll give it all I've got.
 
MD-90
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RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sun Sep 26, 2010 7:15 am

Quoting TheCommodore (Thread starter):

Action needs to be taken now, with Government intervention the only way forward IMHO.New taxes need to be put on junk /fast food and fresh food, eg, fruit etc needs to be made more accessible to the general population, without it things are only going to get worse.

Let's start with ending the corn subsidies that encourage the use of nasty HFCS and end the tariff on sugar that causes Americans to pay twice the going rate of such a basic commodity. Cane sugar may not be good for you but it's better than HFCS.
 
Kiwirob
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Joined: Mon Jun 13, 2005 2:16 pm

RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sun Sep 26, 2010 7:15 am

Quoting DocLightning (Reply 39):
To do so, we make sacrifices. I don't go out to the bar after work with my colleagues; I go swim.

If you enjoy swimming Doc is it really a sacrifice, it's just a choice.

Quoting PPVRA (Reply 44):
It's a global problem. The fattest countries are actually small pacific island nations, even ahead of the US.

In the Pacific Islands it's a cultural problem, in Samoa, Tonga, Cook Islands being big is a sign of wealth and prosperity.
 
ozglobal
Posts: 2524
Joined: Tue Nov 09, 2004 7:33 am

RE: Americans Head OECD's Obesity Table

Sun Sep 26, 2010 9:13 am

Quoting DfwRevolution (Reply 35):
Quoting OzGlobal (Reply 18):
All this American talk of no government intervention over problems that affect the common good of society I find bizarre. The whole reason we organize ourselves with a government is to handle matters of the common good.

And my physical fitness has no bearing on the common good, and vice versa. The only remote claim you can make is that we all bear each other's healthcare costs. That isn't an argument to intrude on each other's private lives, it's an argument to re-structure our healthcare system so that individuals bear the responsibilities for their own actions. That is how a free society would solve the problem.

A "free" society. Please, it's getting old. The American idea of capitalist user pays and every man for himself in all cases is not the definition of freedom, but merely an ideological preference for administration of society. Other "freedom" supporting models are very possible, and in some areas, better. What is more, you choose to ignore the points I went on to make about your country's existing approach to tobacco which is the same as mine for obesity and which has popular support in the US. Further, your argument would be valid if US states did not have traffic laws, gun laws, tax laws, alcohol consumption laws, nudity laws, etc, etc, all enforced by a government authority, the police, for the sake of the common good... So the "freedom" card is nonsense, isn't it?
When all's said and done, there'll be more said than done.

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