Is Fast Food the New Tobacco?
When you have a dollar in your pocket for lunch, do you chose the tiny side salad consisting of lettuce and a few vegetables, or a warm, juicy double cheeseburger. The burger will hold you off until dinner and is much more convenient for an employee or student on the go while the salad has the tendency to leave you feeling unsatisfied. The answer seems obvious. We are on the go all the time welcome to 2012, with no time to stop and peel an orange or slice an apple. We need pre-packaged fruit salad for a tasty, convenient, healthy snack. What may not be noted is our “healthy” snack is probably packed in high calorie syrup and added sugar. If you’re counting calories you should check the ingredients… who has time for that? It’s ok, we can justify that by telling ourselves this fruit cup is high in Vitamin A and C and is a good source of dietary fiber. All of these high calorie fast food options may be convenient, but lead to the overwhelming epidemic of obesity. In Merriam-Webster’s words, epidemic: Affecting or tending to affect a disproportionately large number of individuals within a population, community or region at the same time. Epidemic is used so casually due to the lack of understanding as to the magnitude of the word. This is a serious matter. When discussing the ever increasing epidemic of American obesity, it is important to explore with whom the responsibility might fall on; our government, fast food companies or should the responsibility fall on us? Some say that the issue has become a public health crisis that requires a public health solution. In this respect the government may be at fault for the rising causes of obesity. In the essay, What You Eat Is Your Business, written by libertarian Radley Balko, Balko says, “Instead of manipulating or intervening in the array of food options available to American consumers, our government ought to be working to foster a sense of responsibility in and ownership of our own...
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