Health Secretary Alan Johnson said at the weekend that the obesity epidemic could lead to a public health crisis on the "scale of climate change".
He said efforts to promote exercise and healthy eating had to go "further and faster" ... (Online Telegraph)
Is it me? But what exactly can the government do that's not already being or been done to make people aware of obesity, health and a good diet?
Trans fats (hydrogenated fats) are used in fast foods and are believed to be implicated in causing heart attacks. The Health Minister is set to ban them. Okay, so there is something the government can do.
But anyone living in this country must be aware of the dangers of being fat, the need for a healthy diet and exercise, the harm that too much fast food can do. I don't believe anyone could possibly be unaware. Yet we're still turning into a nation of fatties.
I have a healthy diet and I exercise yet I'm over-weight. I know it and I try - on a daily basis - to change that. And most days I fail because I'm greedy, lazy or depressed. But that's my fault. All the food labelling or regulation in the world isn't going to alter that.
But, yes, the government should be making sure that food is as healthy - or less unhealthy - as it can be. And that advertising and how shops stock and sell their ware is done thoughtfully for the sake of the consumer rather than the shopkeeper. Other than that it's up to the individual, isn't it? I'm not blaming the government for trying; I'm just wondering why they're bothering.
But then again maybe there is something they can do...
They could urge the BBC to rewrite Eastenders. They could have Dot could giving Jim a nice bowl of All Bran for breakfast. Phil Mitchell could be seen eating a banana as he walks down the street. Ian Beale could convert the chip shop into a salad and baguette bar. Peggy Mitchell could don her sweat pants and jog round the square before dropping into the cafe for a freshly squeezed orange juice or smoothie. I think it could be a winner.
I can't claim all the credit for this of course. It was done years ago in The Archers (a radio soap based in the countryside). Part of its mission statement was to be a source of education and information for the general public and the farming community in particular.
And on that point I have some fantastic news for Welshcakes - but I'll start that in a new post.