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If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 10:37 AM   #1
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If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

Well, the NY Times has an article about the food industry being a target for litigation.* The lawyers have targeted them ala the cigarette industry.* It seems we're just not responsible anymore.* It's someone else's fault if I smoke, eat too much and never exercise; preferable someone with deep pockets.*

Most of the time, when I eat at a restaurant, I bring enough home for another meal.* I just can't eat the size portion that's served.* The article says 2/3 of Americans are obese, despite the fast food marketers pushing "healthy" alternatives.* I know we are bombarded with fat food commercials.* But, should the food industry be sued for giving us what we want?*

Article QUOTE:* Engineering obesity?

Despite his criticism of the industry's practices, Yale's Katz acknowledges companies are in a difficult position. Ultimately, they sell food, and staying in business means selling the foods people want. Public health is secondary.

But what if those companies engineered their foods to make you eat more of them? Though he acknowledges that evidence is scarce, Katz believes companies do just that, much the way tobacco companies were accused of tinkering with nicotine.

Research shows that people eat more when faced with a variety of foods, or even a variety of flavors within a single food. For example, you are less likely to overeat plain baked potatoes than those drenched in butter, salt, sour cream and chives.

Sugary cereals, Katz notes, have more salt in them than many potato and corn chips. Katz believes that's one way to make a cereal's flavor more complex and appealing to get people to eat more of it.

Industry officials dispute Katz's theory. Earl, of the Food Products Association, says he knows of no company that has knowingly manipulated ingredients as Katz suggests.

Whatever the food industry's share of the blame, Tillotson, the Tufts professor, thinks obesity lawsuits are inappropriate and Congress is considering a measure to bar them. Food companies were asked to feed a hungry nation; suing now penalizes them for doing so, he believes.
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 11:28 AM   #2
 
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

We know that people are fatter now than 20 years ago. This means that either there's something different about the people (e.g. they are less educated or physically different) or something different about the food or how it's presented (e.g. supersized meals).

The latter seems more likely. How could this be fixed?

The government could pass some laws. Burgers have to have less fat. You can't eat more than 10 French Fries. Fois Gras is illegal. That's not going to work. The laws would be dumb anyway (10 day waiting period for pizza purchase).

Companies could voluntarily provide only healthier food. That's not going to happen. If MacDonald's has only veggie burgers, everyone will go to BK.

Companies get sued and start producing healthier food out of fear of further lawsuits. Doesn't seem fair, but might help.

Everyone gets the bird flu and can't keep anything down. This would work.

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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 11:32 AM   #3
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

Quote:
The latter seems more likely.
Nah. We're just dumber today. At least I am.
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 11:43 AM   #4
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

It would be my fault. Whos else could it be? And I could stand to loose some weight but I wasn't planing on suing anyone.
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 11:48 AM   #5
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

I was in a store recently and the thought occurred that the entire economy would collapse if everyone suddenly started eating right and buying only things they needed. Thank God that won't happen!
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 11:55 AM   #6
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

The issue of having good or bad genes vs personal responsibility applies to many health issues in addition to weight. *I've struggled to keep off the pounds all my life. *I've simply had to learn to focus on exercise and good eating habits since I was a teenager decades ago. A friend was busy lecturing me on how I need to assume the responsibility for my propensity to gain weight one day recently. *I reminded him that he takes meds to control blood pressure and colesterol despite having a low BMI while eating like a hungry farmhand everyday. *"Not fair" he injected, *"my issues are heriditary." *Humbug........ *Everybody's issues are their own responsibility, whether it's having to watch your weight, having high bp or colesterol or even winding up with cancer despite living a healthy lifestyle. *
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 11:58 AM   #7
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

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Originally Posted by TromboneAl
How could this be fixed?
We could start a rumor that fruits & veggies will soon be rendered extinct by the internal combustion engine and global warming.

Maybe we could just show Jennifer Lopez & Jessica Simpson eating bananas zucchinis apples freshgreensalads healthier.

Either people will start eating fruits & veggies before they're "gone", or else two of the century's tougher challenges will be solved overnight. *I'm referring to the pollution & global warming, not the entertainers.
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 12:25 PM   #8
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

The fault belongs with the person who puts the food in their mouth and then doesnt exercise at a reasonable level to burn off the calories.

Anyone know anybody who eats sensibly and exercises regularly at a reasonable level thats fat?

Me neither.

I do know a lot of people who expect everything to be someone elses fault, and a lot of people who want the quick fix. Eat 5 arby's burgers and then take a pill to make it go away in 24 hours.

Not going to happen.
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 01:06 PM   #9
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

The streets of Chicago are proof of girth explosion. Gosh, how big will people get before the human body literally explodes.

Our 25-30 year old doorman is about 6'3" and he is easily 400 lbs, easy. He wheezes when he talks and his lunch from a fast food joint looks like the old fashion brown grocery bag.

It's his fault.
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 01:08 PM   #10
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

We have just returned from a 3 weekvisit to the US, the population is definitly grossly overweight in many instances,a nd when 90% of them have French Fries with Gravy at every meal, easy to see why.

In many instances we left half the food served on the plate, just too much for us to eat, and we fequently observed young children drinking 3 or 4 cokes with their Fried Dinners.

We also put on some weight, we will get it off quickly.

Cut down on the portions, eliminate all that Fried Food, say No to gravy, and water instead of Coke.

Young Girls, in particular, seemed to have a weight problem.

Menus need to offer more healthy alternatives.
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 01:11 PM   #11
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

Quote:
Originally Posted by TromboneAl
We know that people are fatter now than 20 years ago. This means that either there's something different about the people (e.g. they are less educated or physically different) or something different about the food or how it's presented (e.g. supersized meals).

The latter seems more likely. How could this be fixed?
One important part of the equation is exercise. People are more sedentary today than in the past. Kids are much more sedentary today. This does not bode well for them as they grow up. Everyone in my immediate family is obese as defined by the US Government except for me. My family says, "Oh, well he didn't get the fat genes." No, the difference is I walk a lot and am active in sports. I am careful about what I eat, and I take steps to change things when my pants get a little too tight. I gain weight just like everyone else, but by controlling what and how much I eat (calories consumed) and how much I exercise (calories spent) I can alter how much weight I gain or lose. Anyone else can do the same if they choose to.
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 01:34 PM   #12
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

If you look in other people's grocery carts at the store, you see mostly boxes and packages of food. Not as much fresh foods as the packaged ones.
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 01:37 PM   #13
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

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Originally Posted by dusk_to_dawn
Everyone in my immediate family is obese as defined by the US Government except for me. My family says, "Oh, well he didn't get the fat genes."
I have also been identified by my immediate family as having the "saving" gene. That's why I have a house and cars that are paid for (even though my older brothers make more money than I do). So, if you are broke, whose fault is it? Are we going to start blaming advertising for making people spend their money? Do some not have the right genes to save? Can the blame game get any crazier?
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 01:49 PM   #14
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

Whose fault is it?

Who cares? How does assigning fault solve the problem?

If you are fat, who can solve the problem?

Good luck to anyone that believes that federal legislation can make you skinny. If that happens though, I'm going to write my Congressman and ask for legislation that will make me look like Brad Pitt.
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 02:23 PM   #15
 
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 03:25 PM   #16
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

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Whose fault is it? Who cares? How does assigning fault solve the problem? If you are fat, who can solve the problem?
Excellent philosophy. I'm all for suing large companies, just on general principles, but in this case -- NOT.
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 06:35 PM   #17
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

The food companies have been polluting for decades........

Health officials have known that hydrogenated oils are particularly harmful. McDonald's said they would get rid of these transfats years ago but still continue to poison everyone that eats their fries.

Corn sweetener aka glucose-fructose replaced ordinary sugar in soda and commercial baking products. Check the ingredients in a Krispy Kreme.

Ever seen a kid gulp down a 20 oz drink at a convenience store......gobble a large bag of chips...... and then a monster chocolate bar?

If you are fat, get off your ass and work up a sweat.

And start eating real food.

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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 06:41 PM   #18
 
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

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Excellent philosophy. I'm all for suing large companies, just on general principles, but in this case -- NOT.
Agree completely. There are plenty of other viable reasons for suing them. Being overweight is not one of them.
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 06:49 PM   #19
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

i'm up to 19% body fat which increased as my mom deteriorated. now that i am not working for a living i'm working for my life. my motto is to be buff by 50. my brother has become obese during this period as he's dealing with mom plus three kids & running a business.

now, when i see someone overweight, i wonder what struggle got them there.

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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?
Old 03-19-2006, 06:53 PM   #20
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Re: If You Are Fat, Whose Fault Is It?

Understood. But at no point should they become a victim and someone else the perpetrator as a result.
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