WASHINGTON — Fighting obesity will require changes everywhere Americans live, work, play and learn, says a major new report that outlines dozens of options -- from building more walkable neighborhoods to zoning limits on fast-food restaurants to selling healthier snacks in sports arenas.Commentary:
But schools should be a national focus because that's where children spend most of their day, eat a lot of their daily calories -- and should be better taught how to eat healthy and stay fit, the influential Institute of Medicine said Tuesday.
Among the most controversial of the recommendations: Communities could consider a tax on sugary sodas and offering price breaks for healthier beverage choices.
That prompted outrage from the American Beverage Association.
As reported earlier, NBC followed up with reporting of the conclusions of the Institute of Medicine on what to do about the obesity epidemic. I was, as expected, disappointed with the conclusions. NBC chose to focus on our schools. Schools can certainly use some improvement in the types of food provided there in the hallways and cafeterias, but the main culprit, the dietary guidelines that the schools are forced to comply with, are unchanged. Until we fix those guidelines by decreasing the proportion of carbs I fear we won’t see a solution to obesity. NBC (and the Institute of Medicine) were notably silent on the topic of improving the dietary guidelines, which are controlled by the USDA, which is influenced by the (drum roll) agricultural industry. Is the fox guarding the hen house?
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