Obesity is an epidemic and perhaps America’s biggest health problem.
That’s the message in HBO’s four-part, multidisciplinary documentary “The Weight of the Nation.” Producers Sheila Nevins and John Hoffman pull no punches, shining a light on the multibillion-dollar food and advertising industries, as well as on public officials for not addressing the issue, and for actually making the situation worse.
And they have no shortage of evidence to support their contentions. For example, according to a new report in the American Journal of Preventive Medicine, if current trends continue, forty-two percent of the American population will be obese by 2030.
But let’s weigh in here (hehe). Non-US folks please add your thoughts as well. Several questions to spark the discussion . . .
Is obesity as big a problem as reported? If so, who should be held responsible for the country’s soaring obesity rates? Food industry? Government officials? Eaters? Which is more of a factor in the obesity trend/epidemic: lacking self-discipline, living in an environment that promotes unhealthy behaviors, video games/Internet? Obesity rates in children have tripled since 1980. How would you reverse this upward trajectory? Would you?
The Afternoon Inquisition (or AI) is a question posed to you, the Skepchick community. Look for it to appear Tuesdays and Thursdays at 3pm ET.
ED (Rebecca): I’ve changed the featured image on this post from one that showed an obese body with the head cropped out to an artist’s satirical image of Ronald McDonald as a breastfeeding mother. Some commenters pointed out that the original image is dehumanizing, and I agree. I’m sorry about the offense caused.