You may or may not have heard, but the city of Los Angeles passed a law that restricted the opening or expansion of so called ‘stand- alone fast- food restaurants. The main areas that they were banned was in lower income areas where prevalence of obesity was highest (fair or not, this is what they did). Despite these changes, the findings show that there was no reduction in obesity, nor was there a reduction in fast food consumption.
We live in a time where people feel as though their owed something, Thai Lopez (an investor and successful businessman) describes it as self- helplessness, whereby people who struggle with something look for an excuse and give in because it isn’t coming easy to them. Sounds to me as though stopping fast- food chains from expanding in areas is all well and good, the problem is that there is already a surplus to requirements of fast- food outlets, so those culprits see no real changes anyway! Not to detract from the symbolic value of banning the expansion of fast- food outlets, this is powerful in itself and sends a great message, but evidently more needs to be done in order to impact on actual consumption of fast- food and the rising levels of obesity.
Roland Sturm, Aiko Hattori. Diet and obesity in Los Angeles County 2007–2012: Is there a measurable effect of the 2008 “Fast-Food Ban”? Social Science & Medicine, 2015; DOI: 10.1016/j.socscimed.2015.03.004
Science Daily, (2015). Fast-food ban in L.A. fails to improve diets or cut obesity, study finds. Retrieved 25th March, 2015, from http://www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2015/03/150319080354.htm