heavier people bad for economy?

iVillage Member
Registered: 09-07-2009
heavier people bad for economy?
Sat, 03-06-2010 - 9:32pm


White House Adviser Rahm's Older Brother: 'Heavier People' Bad for Economy
American National Institutes of Health bioethicist claims there hidden costs to 'increasing girth' in NY Times 'Freakonomics' podcast.

By Jeff Poor
Business & Media Institute
3/4/2010 3:12:41 PM

Send this page to a friend! (click here)

While the White House is making its last pushes for health care reform to be passed in Congress – a campaign against the so-called obesity epidemic has been ramped up in political circles. The media have played along, of course. First Lady Michelle Obama recently made an unusual appearance on the Fox News Channel about this issue.

Avatar for rollmops2009
iVillage Member
Registered: 02-24-2009
Sun, 03-07-2010 - 7:39am

I am no fan of the Emanuel brothers. But just because left-leaning groups use the economic impact of obesity as an argument for regulation (such as what, btw?), the impact may be real enough.

As for the regulation, I do think that there are serious limitations to what can be solved in this way. However, there are areas where regulation is absolutely called for and where the hallowed free market can easily do harm. School food would be an obvious example. It ought to be criminal to let Pizza Hut provide cafeteria food, for example, and I see no reason why soda and other junk should be sold in schools. It may be good for the market, but it is not good for the kids.

~o~ ...^^^... ~o~

America had often been discovered before Columbus, but it had always been hushed up.

Oscar Wilde

iVillage Member
Registered: 02-19-2008
Mon, 03-08-2010 - 2:05pm

I've heard about this .... easily one of the most idiotic statements from a public official I've heard in some time.

I guess we can always blame George Bush ....


Nov. 20, 2008
Is The Economy Making Us Fat?
Nutritionists Caution That It May, As People Turn To Inexpensive Fast Foods, And Eat More In General Due To Stress

As the cost of regular groceries gets higher and money tighter, Americans are turning to "cheaper calories," reports Michelle Gielan.

(CBS) Will the shrinking economy expand our waistlines?

Dieticians warn it very well might.

Almost two-thirds of Americans are already considered overweight, reports CBS News correspondent Michelle Gielan, and with rising prices at the grocery store, nutritionists say the percentage could grow as more people turn to fast foods, and eat more overall because they feel stressed-out.

Hungry consumers are finding a buck goes a long way at fast food outlets, and the burger business is booming.

"If your bank account has just tanked, you've lost your job, and you are worried about keeping your house, you're not going to be spending a lot of money on food if you can avoid it," observes NYU Food Studies Professor Marion Nestle.

For instance, McDonald's recently reported strong third quarter sales, but nutrition experts worry more consumption of fast food in general may lead to more weight gain and resulting health problems.

Says Nestle, "McDonald's is doing really well now as people have flocked to it, because the cost is low, they know what they're going to be eating, they like the taste of the food, and they're not concerned about whether it's too high in fat sugars and salt."

As a result, dieticians say, fast food is becoming more appealing than cooking with fresh ingredients.

"They're going to be looking for the cheapest calories they can find, and those calories are not necessarily the ones that are best for health," Nestle says.

It's not just inexpensive fast foods threatening America's girth. Heather Bauer, author of "The Wall Street Diet," written for busy execs, says stressful times lead to what she calls "stress eating."

"You get home from work," Bauer explained, "you're exhausted, you turn on the TV, and it's just very doom and gloom. Every time you change the channel, it's about the economy, and people eat, they go to food, because it's just very calming and soothing."

What's more, despite offering clients huge discounts, gyms around the country are reporting declining membership, due in part to the sluggish economy, and that could add to a perfect recipe for increased American obesity.

Nutritionists point out that eating healthy is actually a good investment, since fewer health problems down the road could mean you save money on health care.

iVillage Member
Registered: 10-25-2006
Mon, 03-08-2010 - 5:08pm

I agree that obese people are bad for the economy, but so are a lot of other people--people with chronic illnesses, smokers, aggressive drivers, alcoholics, televangelists, litterers, criminals (all of them, not only the Madoffs), people who don't clean up after their pets, greedy CEOs, people who watch porn when they should be working, lobbyists, and .....there's no end.

Regulation is necessary because too many people are too self-centered.