“The recommendations … may
appear radical to some, but the
urgency of our situation demands
Dean MacDonald spoke about a dozen policy issues during his speech at a fundraising brunch this past Saturday.
One of the issues he spoke about was the alarming obesity epidemic that is occurring in this province and the consequences it will have on health care delivery, productivity and costs in the near future.
He issued an alarm and a call for people to change their diets and exercise routines. He says government has to do a lot more to prevent this epidemic from crippling the healthcare system and the economy.
MacDonald pointed out some extremely discerning statistics. He said that we may be raising the first generation of children that do not outlive their parents. Some facts to consider: Canadian children between two and 17 years of age are considered overweight (18%) or obese (8%). Statistics indicate that 75% of obese children will be obese adults.
His message was that we have had enough tip toeing around the problem, we need to act.
Interestingly enough, an article in today’s National Post reports on an initiative launched by the Ontario Medical Association which borrows from the anti-tobacco movement. They are suggesting that and same kind of graphic warning labels be emblazoned on junk food products, to highlight their risks.
They are also calling for higher taxes on junk food, restrictions on marketing of fatty and sugary food to children, limiting the availability of those products in recreational facilities frequented by young people and reduced taxes on healthy foods.
A few weeks ago while biking with my boys we stopped at for a few candies at the Freak Lunchbox.
. I spied a can of Cherry Coke manufactured in the United Kingdom. I purchased a can and shared it with the boys. While drinking it, I noted an age warning on the back of the can. In the the UK kids under 16 can not purchase Cherry Coke without the permission of their parents.
I agree with Dean and the Ontario Medical Association, it is past time that we took obesity prevention more seriously.
If scaring people is what it takes, that lets frighten the shit out of people with the facts!