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Looks like Mayor Bloomberg's sugary soft drinks cutbacks are already working. <LOL>

See chart at bottom of page at this link.

http://www.washingtonpost.com/blogs/ezra-klein/post/will-phi...

intercst
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In April the New York Times covered the push to combat obesity by putting an end to "food deserts."

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/04/18/conquering-f...

Curiously, just the day before it published an article relegating the concept of food deserts to urban mythology.

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/04/18/health/research/pairing-of...

In a follow up, the author of the first piece expressed his surprise. He also pointed to another scholarly work that suggested a shocking alternative explanation for obesity. People may actually be eating junk food because they like the way it tastes.

http://opinionator.blogs.nytimes.com/2012/04/25/time-to-revi...

Who knows, maybe next the ivory tower denizens will learn that school children prefer video games to wind sprints.

Has anyone asked Mrs. Obama if some of the obesity in this country may be related to the billions of dollars the government spends subsidizing corn producers in places such as Illinois, for instance?
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He also pointed to another scholarly work that suggested a shocking alternative explanation for obesity. People may actually be eating junk food because they like the way it tastes.


This hits it right on the head. Ask any CEO in the quick service restaurant industry how well "healthy" options sell vs the regular stuff. People don't want the healthy stuff when they eat out; especially at the price points offered by the QSR restaurants (which reflect the higher cost of produce vs institutional ground meet/cut potatoes.

The QSR industry then gets demonized for offering nutritionally poor choices, yet they offer what people want to buy. I don't go into Wendy's wanting to pay $5 for a salad, when I could get a chicken sandwich and fries for the same price or less.

Regarding grocery store items, I'd like to see proposals and studies about removing the sales tax exemption on everything other than "ingredients". Produce, raw meats, flour, sugar, oils, pasta, rice, even canned and frozen vegetables, etc would all remain tax exempt (I'm basing this whole argument on Massachusetts’s taxation of food, and I know it won't hold true for some other states). Items such as pre-cooked frozen breaded chicken, frozen pizzas, Hamburger helper, mac and cheese, chips, microwavable meals would all lose their exemption. This would a) provide an incentive for people to move towards healthier (and generally cheaper overall) self-prepared meals, and also provide states with additional tax revenue. Most grocery stores sales item databases already have a flag for grocery item vs prepared food item. There would be some rough edges around determining what's an "ingredient" vs a "prepared meal" - jars of pasta sauce come to mind, as does salsa. However, I’d much rather see this given some thought rather than some of the proposals of outright bans that we’re seeing today.
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The government declares war on junk food because it's easier than declaring war on people who don't exercise (oh yeah, and who also vote).

I think the majority of the so-called "obesity epidemic" is due to sedentary lifestyles more than "junk food". But almost all the emphasis is on junk food, and it seems like these "crusaders" against fat ignore the vast majority of the problem.

It's easier to push a ban on the "wrong" food than to enforce a law requiring exercise.

#29
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I think the majority of the so-called "obesity epidemic" is due to sedentary lifestyles more than "junk food". But almost all the emphasis is on junk food, and it seems like these "crusaders" against fat ignore the vast majority of the problem.

There's no real evidence that caloric expenditures have decreased in the last 30 years.

There's plenty of evidence that caloric intake has increased over the same period.
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I think the majority of the so-called "obesity epidemic" is due to sedentary lifestyles more than "junk food".

IMHO, Bingo!!!!

As a kid I ate ice cream, chips, snicker doodles, etc., etc., and plenty of fried chicken, fried okra, fried squash, creamed corn, etc., etc., etc. Why wasn't I fat? Because I was either shooting hoops in the drive till dark, playing sandlot baseball till dark, swimming to the pool closed, pedaling bikes all over town, etc., etc., etc.

Seems like kids (and adults) these days still do the former but little of the later.

JLC
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The current generation always remembers being far more physically active than "kids today."

I think that started with the ancient Greeks.
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#29,

I think any nutritionist will tell you reducing caloric intake is more effective than burning calories. It takes a lot of exercise to burn off calories.

db
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The current generation always remembers being far more physically active than "kids today."

Yes, every generation thinks the current one stinks. I was guaranteed one of two things for Christmas each year, either a new football or basketball. Because we just wore them out.

As far as obesity and activity, the younger generation looks like they'll have a shorter life expectancy then the previous generation. If that happens, it will be a first.

JLC
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Yes, every generation thinks the current one stinks.

It started with Aristophanes, who complained that the youth of Greece had become "pale and narrow-chested," so unlike the brave souls who fought at Marathon.

I was guaranteed one of two things for Christmas each year, either a new football or basketball. Because we just wore them out.

I don't think I've ever met anyone of my generation who remembers it any differently.

You wonder why they bothered making The Brady Bunch and Saturday morning cartoons since there couldn't have been anyone watching them.
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dbphd writes,

I think any nutritionist will tell you reducing caloric intake is more effective than burning calories. It takes a lot of exercise to burn off calories.

I agreed with that statement until I read this about Olympic hurdler Edwin Moses.

http://online.wsj.com/article/SB1000142405270230486800457737...

After his retirement, Mr. Moses obtained a master's in business while also "detraining" himself, slowly moving from eating 5,000 calories and running hours each day to a more normal pace.

</snip>


Isn't 5,000 calories 2 or 3 times what the average adult is supposed to eat?

intercst
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Probably double what the average male needs. But, running can easily burn 800 calories per hour, so when he was training hard, he would need additional calories.

Olympic swimmer Michael Phelps spends several hours in the pool daily, and I've seen more than once that he consumes nearly 10,000 calories per day during periods of heavy training.
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Isn't 5,000 calories 2 or 3 times what the average adult is supposed to eat?

intercst


IIRC, the average adult "needs" 2000-2500 calories per day.

FWIW, while in high school and college I was heavily into sports/activities. I had the time, desire, and testosterone to burn. In physiology class, we did studies/tests/etc. to track our caloric intake/burn. I was consuming over 6000 a day. I would have a big gulp milk shake (with protein, etc.) at night and barely managed to maintain weight. Not nearly as active but still in the 2500-3000 range.

JLC
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You wonder why they bothered making The Brady Bunch and Saturday morning cartoons since there couldn't have been anyone watching them.

Because even back then there were some kids that needed the "husky" sized pants.

JLC
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Isn't 5,000 calories 2 or 3 times what the average adult is supposed to eat?

Running burns a ton of calories. I can burn up around 1000 calories/hour while running at peak training. Edwin Moses might have burned even more given his size and the type of training he was going through.

Lance Armstrong and Michael Phelps are both well known cases of people in unbelievable shape that consume caloric loads that some cannot comprehend. During peak training/competition, those guys would eat a week's calories for the average adult woman...every day.

Acme
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I think a nutritionist might make the point that it's more effective to tell an obese person to leave the doughnut than to go for a run. Sure, it's possible to burn an enormous amount of calories, just not likely.

db
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My personal experience is that exercise makes me want to eat less, because it's painful and I look at a donut and think "it ain't WORTH it!"

Studies have shown: Dieters lose weight faster than exercisers - lose more, as a matter of fact, but exercisers KEEP the weight off better because while it's possible to learn to like moderate exercise, nobody ever learns to like dieting.

Also you diet and lose muscle, that reduces your metabolism, which makes the weight come back more - you diet - lose more muscle - you turn into veal. All fat, no muscle.

If you exercise, you gain muscle, which increases your metabolism.
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....... you turn into veal. - StockGoddess

----------------

Heh... nice imagery.... recworthy
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I was reading something years ago about the mistreatment of veal - being forced to live in a small pen, fed fatty foods, denied any real exercise ...and it dawned on me that was exactly my life as a cube-dwelling software developer. Small space, fatty foods, no exercise.

I thought to myself "Mooooooooo!"

SG
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I thought to myself "Mooooooooo!"




Thank you for my smile of the day!
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Produce, raw meats, flour, sugar, oils, pasta, rice, even canned and frozen vegetables, etc would all remain tax exempt (I'm basing this whole argument on Massachusetts’s taxation of food, and I know it won't hold true for some other states). Items such as pre-cooked frozen breaded chicken, frozen pizzas, Hamburger helper, mac and cheese, chips, microwavable meals would all lose their exemption.
To some extent this is how we do it in CA. It does result in some oddities - A brownie is taxed, but brownie mix isn't for example...
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>> To some extent this is how we do it in CA. It does result in some oddities - A brownie is taxed, but brownie mix isn't for example... <<

Others I remember from California (at least this is how it was as of 2003 when we left the state):

Popped popcorn is taxable but unpopped kernels were not.

If you go to a sandwich shop and order to eat at the establishment, it's always taxable, but if you order "to go" it's NOT taxable *if it's a cold sandwich*. Hot sandwiches are always taxed as are sandwiches eaten on the premises. Cold "to go" orders are tax-exempt.

Odd stuff. Who thinks of these things?

#29
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