Obesity

Adults make better decisions on diet, so dairies close to schools need to be banned

That’s the gist of the argument put forward by the Morgan Foundation:

The Morgan Foundation, started by Gareth Morgan and his family, has made the call in a submission to the Advertising Standards Authority, which is reviewing its code for advertising to children.

Many other submitters are also worried about children being targeted in or around their school environment.

A study released on Wednesday showed schools were surrounded by take-away and convenience stores.

Many of them were decked out in the colours and logos of ice-cream or soft drink brands.

Morgan Foundation general manager Geoff Simmons said that sort of branding should not be near primary schools, nor should billboards advertising junk food.

It was time for the advertising code to be broadened to reflect the way children are bombarded with marketing from many sources, he said.

“In the past we have tended to take a very narrow view of what constitutes junk food marketing to children.

“When we look at the sort of marketing that children actually see it is much broader than the narrow definition of advertising.” Read more »

Health trougher wants to save fat bastards by taxing us all

Robyn Toomath is a health trougher and a socialist. She hasn’t yet met a tax that she doesn’t like.

She appeared on Sunday last night re-iterating what she has written on her blog.

If you stop and ask people on the street, nine out of ten (including the overweight ones) will say that you get fat from over-eating and its no-one’s fault but your own. This is not just due to imperfect understanding of geno-environmental interactions, but because the notions of autonomy and self-control are deeply held (1). So when nihilistic biologists such as myself suggest there is no such thing as free will, it’s not just the libertarians but liberal intellectuals who are offended.

I need to remind myself of this tension between free will and socially determined arguments when I feel frustrated at the persistent framing of obesity as an issue of personal responsibility. But no matter how appealing the idea that we can change our body size if we choose to, the reality is that we can’t. At least, not most of us, and not permanently. Professor Sir Peter Gluckman, the Prime Minister’s Chief Science Advisor (and obesity expert), said in a recent speech that over his life time he has lost about 100kg in weight, and put about 95kg back on (2). If motivation and education were the keys to staying slim Sir Peter should be as thin as a rake (he’s not).

It’s all very well maintaining a fantasy if it makes us feel better but the personal responsibility myth causes great harm.

Read more »

Thank God Woodhouse is not in charge of Health as Coleman says “no” to Sugar Tax

Jonathan Coleman has told the health busy-bodies to go stick their suggestions over a sugar tax.

The Government isn’t fazed  by a group of health professors lobbying to introduce a tax on sugary drinks.

A group of more than 70 health academics from various New Zealand universities want more to be done about the country’s high rate of childhood obesity – the fourth highest in the world.

They say the Government’s action plan of “22 soft strategies that was launched last year with no extra funding” won’t do anything to change the problem.

The group is urging Health Minister Jonathan Coleman to implement a “significant tax” on sugary drinks – the number two recommendation that came out of a report by the World Health Organisation Commission on Ending Childhood Obesity.

But Coleman says the Government’s position hasn’t changed and the professors are on a “different page”.

“There is still no evidence a tax would actually decrease obesity,” he said.

“There is no simple answer otherwise people would have tried it.”

Read more »

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Otago Uni public health ‘expert’ blog gets it wrong

So much for the University of Otago’s positioning as so-called public health experts.

On Tuesday they raced out a blog post trying to shame Health Minister Jonathan Coleman into supporting a sugar tax on fizzy drinks here in NZ.

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It’s written by the usual anti-sugar troughers. Lets’ remind ourselves who some of them are.

Dr Wilma Waterlander is obviously the lead author. She and Dr Helen Eyles had a lovely time recently at the 5-star Waldorf Astoria Edinburgh with its exciting social programme.

Prof Nick Wilson is a well-known trougher from the Otago University’s Wellington Department of Public Health Troughers, who last year was exposed by the Taxpayers’ Union over his misleading claims over a salt tax.

Then there’s 11-million-dollar woman Professor Cliona Ni Mhurchu, well known for calling for a 20% tax on fat, salt, dairy, meat etc.

But hang on a minute, what’s this? Looks like they’ve been caught out botching their references.   Read more »

There is fat, and then there is morbidly obese. Ms Pause is in the latter category

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Cat Pause is grandstanding again with her pro-fat-bastard stance.

She wants people to stop picking on fatty boomsticks.

It is legal to discriminate against me in Aotearoa New Zealand.

Even though research clearly demonstrates that fat people are discriminated against in educational, employment, and housing, settings, New Zealand hasn’t legislated to make it illegal. In fact, very few places around the world have provided protection for individuals from facing discrimination based on their size.

The Elliot Larsen Civil Rights Acts in the state of Michigan, USA, prohibits discrimination based on weight and height (in addition to the usual categories of race, sex, nationality, etc).

A handful of cities across the United States, including San Francisco and Washington DC have also passed laws against weight discrimination.

Read more »

Time for a fat-bastard tax

Fat-Cat-Meme2

Forget sugar taxes, fat taxes or anything else based on ingredients. We should be taxing the fatty not the food the fatty scoffs.

Kiwis are porky and dangerously deluded about it, a new study has found.

While we might tout ourselves as a sports-mad nation, the reality is most of us are hopelessly inactive.

According to a study comparing 11 countries, Kiwis were not only the chubbiest, but were “wildly off the mark” in estimating how fat they were.

While six in 10 were overweight or obese, most thought only 45 per cent of us fitted that description, independent research for the annual Cigna 360° Wellbeing Score found.

Health and nutrition experts are not surprised. “I think it’s normal to be overweight now,” New Zealand Nutrition Foundation dietitian Sarah Hanrahan said.   Read more »

World’s fattest man dies at 38. Can you guess why?

via Stuff

via Stuff

The world’s most obese man has died of heart failure at the age of 38.

German press agency Deutsche Presse-Agentur cited a friend of Mexican man Andres Moreno Sepulveda who said he died on his way to the hospital in the state of Sonora on Christmas Day. Sepulveda had weighed as much as 450kg. Sepulveda’s publicist confirmed the news to London’s Daily Telegraph.

It is understood he suffered a heart attack. Read more »

CLAIM: Fat chicks as big a threat as terrorism

Terrorist in training

Terrorist in training

The UK’s Chief Medical Officer says the obesity threat for fat chicks is as big a risk as terrorism.

Obesity poses as big a risk to the nation as terrorism, says the Chief Medical Officer.

Dame Sally Davies wants the obesity crisis in women to be classed alongside flooding and major outbreaks of disease – as well as the threat from violent extremism.

Her extraordinary claim comes as she warns today that being overweight affects all stages of women’s lives – including in the womb.

It may lead them to being teased as teenagers, having higher-risk pregnancies and possibly developing breast cancer or heart disease after the menopause.   Read more »

Poverty? We’re getting fatter and still have enough money to get drunk more often

So much for increasing poverty.

A new report shows that we are getting fatter and drinking more.

An annual snapshot of the nation’s health shows 31 percent of adults are obese and problem drinking is increasing.

The Ministry of Health’s annual health survey, which involves face-to-face interviews with more than 13,000 adults and the parents and caregivers of over 4000 children, found one in nine children aged two to 14 were obese.

Children living in the poorest neighbourhoods were five times more likely to be obese than those living in the most affluent and, for adults, the equivalent rate ratio was 1.7 times, after adjusting for age, sex and ethnic differences.

More than 5.3 percent of the adult population was morbidly obese, up from 3.4 percent five years ago.   Read more »

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Fat bastard sacked fairly for being a fat bastard

In Australia a fat bastard was sacked for being a fat bastard and the resulting court case has upheld the rights of his employers to sack him for being a fat bastard.

The Fair Work Commission has ruled an obese forklift driver was fairly dismissed because his weight created a workplace safety issue.

Ranui Parahi worked as a cool room operator for dairy business Parmalat and weighed 165 kilograms when Parmalat called in an occupational therapist to assess Parahi and other employees.

The occupational therapist found Parahi was of “medium to high risk” and raised concerns he may not be able to safely and competently perform his role as a result of his weight.

Parahi’s weight exceeded the forklift’s maximum weight safety ratings and by the time of a second assessment it increased to 175 kilograms.

The occupational therapist took into account a cardiologist’s report which indicated Parahi had “severe obstructive sleep apnoea that may pose a problem with operating mobile machinery”. The occupational therapist advised Parahi should only conduct “semi-sedentary-type work” which did not require any heavy manual handling or operating mobile machinery for full-time hours.   Read more »