Sorry guys, this isn’t going to be an exhaustive take on ALL the ways that we can reduce obesity, heck, if I knew how I would be a wealthy man both literally and metaphorically. Unfortunately even if I knew all the ways to reduce this pandemic, implementing the necessary changes would be another thing altogether.
There is a lot of ambiguity with reducing obesity, but what we do know is the root of the problem… calories. From here we have to consider the main sources of these calories, and in the UK… it’s processed food and drinks. There is a place for some processed foods, ready meals for example do help to improve nutritional quality of people’s meals, a lot of people who opt for a ready meal may have otherwise gone for a kebab, take-away or oven pizza for example. All of which have little in the way of vegetables and nutritional quality. A ready meal on the other hand deliver a balance of protein, carbs and fibre in the form of veg, only downside is often the salt content, but that’s the trade- off it seems, plus there are many low salt versions too (just check the potassium in these as often salt is swapped for potassium).
In a nut- shell then, the nutritional changes that made the biggest difference to obesity thus far were ones that improved the nutritional quality of the food, including trans- fat bans, reduced commercial availability of sugar dense snack and drinks, as well as limiting the availability of high fat foods (particularly trans fats).
So if the government are serious about cutting costs in the NHS etc, and we want to avoid compulsory privatised healthcare, then we need to start looking at sugar and trans fat taxes, overall improvement of nutritional density, and encouraging manufacturers to produce all- round better foods.
Nutraingredients.com, (2015). From soda bans to nutrient labelling: What really helps reduce obesity? Retrieved 27th May, 2015, from http://www.nutraingredients.com/Research/From-soda-bans-to-nutrient-labelling-What-really-helps-reduce-obesity