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What new or revised public policy/law would make it easier for people to maintain a healthy weight?

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  • magnusthenerdmagnusthenerd Posts: 806Member Member Posts: 806Member Member
    ogtmama wrote: »
    Stop subsidizing the sugar, corn and wheat industries. Let food cost what it actually cost so that a salad doesn't cost 10X as much as wonder bread. If isn't real and it forces people to make unnatural decisions

    The subsidies aren't anywhere near that level of out of alignment that I've ever seen. Grains are easy to grow even without subsidies.
  • Theoldguy1Theoldguy1 Posts: 474Member Member Posts: 474Member Member
    ogtmama wrote: »
    Regulate the labels of alcohol bottles to Express the health effects like they do with cigarettes and calories at fast food places.

    It's been there since late 1980's: https://www.law.cornell.edu/uscode/text/27/215
    edited May 29
  • ogtmamaogtmama Posts: 1,401Member Member Posts: 1,401Member Member
    I tried to post a picture of canadian cigarette packages for reference but I don't seem to be able to.

    To be clear I think ALL the health problems with direct links should be included and that advertising, in giving packaging, and enticing children should be actively banned.

    edited May 29
  • dra760dra760 Posts: 54Member Member Posts: 54Member Member
    To clarify>>>I believe maintaining healthy weight starts with how we learn to eat as children. Hence my focus on children.
  • ceiswynceiswyn Posts: 2,054Member Member Posts: 2,054Member Member
    I find it interesting the number of times in this thread people have expressed an interest that more place be required to label calories and that calorie accuracy should be higher. I think it is easy to see how it would help someone using MFP or any other calorie tracker, but I think it overestimates how much anyone makes calorie based food decisions.

    I recall (and I should probably look up) a study that showed calorie counts don't seem to impact food decisions at restaurants. The suggestion was that the numbers are just to abstract. Instead, they found there was a difference in behavior when menus were required to color code foods - low calories had green for go, while high calorie options were in red, and in between had yellow - there was a much greater change in food behaviors. I wonder how much it would work in the long run, or if it people would slowly build up blinders.

    I strongly suspect that most people don't know how many calories is a reasonable amount for a meal. They may know the general guidance of '2000 for women, 2500 for men' (which I think is too high, but that's another subject), but they've certainly never thought about how that would actually divide up into meals, snacks and drinks.

    It probably doesn't help that restaurants seem to think that 'low calorie options' mean anything below 500/600 kcal. Whereas for most people, that's not low, that's about right...
  • lemurcat2lemurcat2 Posts: 3,360Member Member Posts: 3,360Member Member
    Great, now I have that Naughty by Nature song running through my head. (Pretty sure it meant something different that could definitely not be written on MFP, however.)

    Not really seeing why having calorie counts in chains is supposed to be hard to accomplish. Most chains around here already have calories available and it's great.
  • kimny72kimny72 Posts: 14,069Member Member Posts: 14,069Member Member
    lemurcat2 wrote: »
    Great, now I have that Naughty by Nature song running through my head. (Pretty sure it meant something different that could definitely not be written on MFP, however.)

    Not really seeing why having calorie counts in chains is supposed to be hard to accomplish. Most chains around here already have calories available and it's great.

    So you're not down with OPP then? :lol:

    Yeah, chain restaurants have been required to post calories in NY for a number of years now, and I've never heard of any struggling to do it.

    It is problematic for a lot of smaller businesses, which is why they are always (to my knowledge) excluded by theses laws.

    I mean, I don't really think the calorie counts on menus are really helping fight the obesity epidemic, as either the numbers are meaningless to most folks I know or they are being willfully ignorant anyway and ignore them. They're great for those of us keeping track though <shrug>.
    edited June 10
  • mmapagsmmapags Posts: 8,164Member Member Posts: 8,164Member Member
    lemurcat2 wrote: »
    Great, now I have that Naughty by Nature song running through my head. (Pretty sure it meant something different that could definitely not be written on MFP, however.)

    Not really seeing why having calorie counts in chains is supposed to be hard to accomplish. Most chains around here already have calories available and it's great.

    It isn't hard to accomplish at all. There are software programs that make it fairly simple. Cheftec for example, the one I worked with in the past when I managed a the flagship location of a small chain of restaurants. It's simple, you plug in the ingredients and amounts and is spits out the nutritionals. For chains that have a mostly stable menu with seasonal items and a few coming off and on the menu based on sales, it's pretty easy.

    The thing is, as kimny pointed out, it hasn't really changed consumer behavior. The Cheesecake Factory has published their nutritionals for years. Their "Wellness Salad is" 840 calories. Their "Mushroom Burger is 1400 calories. Their "Pasta Napolitana" is 2470 calories. Their sales remain high and growing slightly (To be expected that the growth has slowed. They are a mature chain at this point) not dropping.

    Plain fact is people don't really care. It proves the point that you can't legislate morality or personal judgement.

  • lemurcat2lemurcat2 Posts: 3,360Member Member Posts: 3,360Member Member
    mmapags wrote: »
    lemurcat2 wrote: »
    Great, now I have that Naughty by Nature song running through my head. (Pretty sure it meant something different that could definitely not be written on MFP, however.)

    Not really seeing why having calorie counts in chains is supposed to be hard to accomplish. Most chains around here already have calories available and it's great.

    It isn't hard to accomplish at all. There are software programs that make it fairly simple. Cheftec for example, the one I worked with in the past when I managed a the flagship location of a small chain of restaurants. It's simple, you plug in the ingredients and amounts and is spits out the nutritionals. For chains that have a mostly stable menu with seasonal items and a few coming off and on the menu based on sales, it's pretty easy.

    The thing is, as kimny pointed out, it hasn't really changed consumer behavior. The Cheesecake Factory has published their nutritionals for years. Their "Wellness Salad is" 840 calories. Their "Mushroom Burger is 1400 calories. Their "Pasta Napolitana" is 2470 calories. Their sales remain high and growing slightly (To be expected that the growth has slowed. They are a mature chain at this point) not dropping.

    Plain fact is people don't really care. It proves the point that you can't legislate morality or personal judgement.

    I agree with this. What it does it make it easier for those of us who do care, and removes an excuse. (I do think it also sometimes leads to restaurants adding some lower cal options. I've seen that with some places, and it also helps you figure out whether a quick serve place like Pret a Manger or Potbelly's or whatever will have workable options. Both do, IMO.)

    My argument (such as it is, I'm not really arguing) is NOT that it's some miraculous public policy that will solve the obesity crisis (like I said, calorie counts have been common around here for some time and people don't seem to have gotten thinner), but that it's not some hugely awful and burdensome thing.

    I also would never suggest that the requirement should extend to all restaurants, and most of the restaurants I personally go to don't have them.
    edited June 10
  • mmapagsmmapags Posts: 8,164Member Member Posts: 8,164Member Member
    lemurcat2 wrote: »
    mmapags wrote: »
    lemurcat2 wrote: »
    Great, now I have that Naughty by Nature song running through my head. (Pretty sure it meant something different that could definitely not be written on MFP, however.)

    Not really seeing why having calorie counts in chains is supposed to be hard to accomplish. Most chains around here already have calories available and it's great.

    It isn't hard to accomplish at all. There are software programs that make it fairly simple. Cheftec for example, the one I worked with in the past when I managed a the flagship location of a small chain of restaurants. It's simple, you plug in the ingredients and amounts and is spits out the nutritionals. For chains that have a mostly stable menu with seasonal items and a few coming off and on the menu based on sales, it's pretty easy.

    The thing is, as kimny pointed out, it hasn't really changed consumer behavior. The Cheesecake Factory has published their nutritionals for years. Their "Wellness Salad is" 840 calories. Their "Mushroom Burger is 1400 calories. Their "Pasta Napolitana" is 2470 calories. Their sales remain high and growing slightly (To be expected that the growth has slowed. They are a mature chain at this point) not dropping.

    Plain fact is people don't really care. It proves the point that you can't legislate morality or personal judgement.

    I agree with this. What it does it make it easier for those of us who do care, and removes an excuse. (I do think it also sometimes leads to restaurants adding some lower cal options. I've seen that with some places, and it also helps you figure out whether a quick serve place like Pret a Manger or Potbelly's or whatever will have workable options. Both do, IMO.)

    My argument (such as it is, I'm not really arguing) is NOT that it's some miraculous public policy that will solve the obesity crisis (like I said, calorie counts have been common around here for some time and people don't seem to have gotten thinner), but that it's not some hugely awful and burdensome thing.

    I also would never suggest that the requirement should extend to all restaurants, and most of the restaurants I personally go to don't have them.

    Yes, we are in total agreement. Interestingly, down here in Oaxaca there are very few chain restaurants. so you just need to exercise your best judgement and make good choices. One thing that does stand out though is that the trend of huge portions is not a thing here as it really has become at many chains in the U.S. Some of those The Cheesecake Factory meals are enough for 2 or more people. I went to a BBQ place here yesterday afternoon and got beef ribs. 4 good size ribs with a side salad. It was a lot by Oaxaca standard but less that I would see in a typical U.S. BBQ place.
  • tbright1965tbright1965 Posts: 802Member, Premium Member Posts: 802Member, Premium Member
    As kind of a corollary to this topic, how do people feel about farm subsidies and the Farm Bill in the US? What would change if these did not exist?

    Not a fan of farm subsidies either. However, I think the food stamp program is attached, so good luck getting rid of such subsidies.
  • LyndaBSSLyndaBSS Posts: 5,854Member, Premium Member Posts: 5,854Member, Premium Member
    To the OP question, laws only work if people obey them. People can't follow simple traffic laws, don't know how any food consumption law would work. :/
  • paranormalkittyparanormalkitty Posts: 4Member Member Posts: 4Member Member
    As kind of a corollary to this topic, how do people feel about farm subsidies and the Farm Bill in the US? What would change if these did not exist?

    Not a fan of farm subsidies either. However, I think the food stamp program is attached, so good luck getting rid of such subsidies.

    The school lunch program is also tied to it.
  • Theoldguy1Theoldguy1 Posts: 474Member Member Posts: 474Member Member
    As kind of a corollary to this topic, how do people feel about farm subsidies and the Farm Bill in the US? What would change if these did not exist?

    Not a fan of farm subsidies either. However, I think the food stamp program is attached, so good luck getting rid of such subsidies.

    Farm subsidies are about $20B a year, around $60 a person. When you think about it, not bad insurance to make sure the US has all the food it needs and we're paying far less as a percent of our income for food than anywhere else in the world.
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