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Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

I googled RVF and I couldn't find anything similar so I thought I'd start a new thread on this. Please let me know if this is a dupe.

Who does you guys think is at fault for obesity in the US? The Fast Food Companies, parents or both?

I blame the parents - I was in Tokyo last year and there's fast food places everywhere, yet everybody is slim. I never saw diet sodas on sale. People also walk everywhere and eat smaller portions.

Compare this with the US, where portion sizes are bigger and most people drive everywhere.

I guess the one area where you can fault the fast food companies is portion sizes. They could always be smaller e.g. at McDonalds USA Medium fries = UK Large fries.

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

Whether it's shitty food, shitty schools, shitty media culture, etc., parents are ultimately the last line of defense of their child's well-being.

Needless to say, there's a lot of finger-pointing by shitty parents nowadays.

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

People drive way too much, walking a mile or two is madness for a lot of folks. Then fewer people are married, especially to wives who know how to cook. The average American eats fast food at least 3 times a week because of this.

Basically every shitty food available in a grocery store is heavily subsidized by the government, and is some variation of corn.

On top of that shitshow, the average American spends 5 hours a day watching television.

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Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

Blaming people driving everywhere only seems to be part of the problem - if anything the US's driving culture seemed stronger through the 1950s and 1960s when oil was cheaper than a back alley whore. We've only really seen this obesity crisis hitting in the past 30 years or so - even in the 80s fat kids were in the minority. Has the entire culture really become that sedentary in the previous thirty years, or is it something else?

Remissas, discite, vivet.
God save us from people who mean well. -storm

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

It's neither parents nor fast food companies. It's the result of the federal government fiddling with commerce/labor markets and overall economic prosperity.

After WWII, Eisenhower built the Interstate Highway System. This created suburban sprawl, shopping malls with huge parking lots, motels and fast food joints. I've even read that Levitt, the man who planned the infamous Levittowns, colluded with GM/Ford executives to include two-car garages in his townhouse models. Of course, both automobile and suburban housing planners would profit. Before WWII, automobiles were pretty fuel inefficient and expensive, but the Interstate Highway System forced auto companies to improve automobiles and put two cars in every family home. During wartime, GM/Ford assembly lines were converted to make Army jeeps, so they had experience in improving fuel efficiency. It also helped that fuel was cheap. So now, cars were popularized and required to navigate the suburban sprawl.

The Interstate Highway System meant improvements in "food logistics". Most potatoes could be farmed in Idaho alone, and driven to McDonald's franchises all over the country. Those industrial farms that provided agricultural goods for the whole country would drive small, local farmers out of business, because of economies of scale ( ie. plant more potatoes, each potato is cheaper). So this effect made local farmers obsolete, and relied even more on commercial automobiles to transport agricultural goods. On top of all that, the government throws in agricultural subsidies for corn, wheat and potatoes. Guess what that does? It makes sugar, high-fructose corn syrup, french fries, potato chips and other shitty GI foods really cheap. That's why obesity is an epidemic among the poor. A family pack of potato chips is cheaper than a sack of rice. Let's compare a liter of Coca Cola ($1.50) vs liter of water ($1). For $0.50 more, I'm getting hundreds of calories more. If I'm running a family on food stamps and meeting minimum caloric intake is an issue, would long-term risk of diabetes seem that important? Probably not. The Coca Cola seems like a pretty rational option.

Finally, the job market in the U.S. has transformed. During WWII, we were a manufacturing powerhouse. Sedentary labor, like typewriters and administration were done by women. Men were mostly blue-collar, and a college education wasn't as prominent. The post-war G.I. Bill was what made college education the golden standard. So in the past few decades, the federal government made college education the golden standard, shrinking the agricultural/manufacturing sectors. Combine that with irrigation/fertilizers/pesticides to make farms ultra-productive and outsourcing of manufacturing jobs to China/Korea/Mexico and we have a minuscule agricultural and industrial sector.

Less Agriculture/Manufacturing:
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So now, most Americans jet-set on an office chair, bounce home in a comfy SUV, and watch Netflix while feasting on some Taco Bell. And all of that are compliments of the federal government.

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

At the end of the day, it comes down to thermodynamics. On a physical level, that is 100% of what is going on.

The shifts have therefore been behavioral. Why are people eating to more?

Americans have been eating out more now than in the past. McDonalds wasn't always 24/7 and fast food restaurants weren't open late at night. In fact most restaurants closed by 11pm. People have been going out more to eat.

A contributing factor is working parents are working more hours than before. Hence less time to cook. Even at that, mother's that need to work aren't cooking dinner.

Kids are simply getting less exercise. Gym classes use to be held every single day for at least an hour and were taught to hussle. Now they are attending gym classes less and don't work hard.

People are getting less sleep than ever before.

There is also more misinformation out there on what controls weight than ever before. People will do silly things like blame genetics, their environment, their upbringing. What they will always refuse to do is blame their behavior.

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

It's Roosh's fault. He's supposed to be the leader of the international fat shaming movement but he's too busy enraging Canadians. We all need to redouble our shaming efforts.

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

Americans eat roughly the same amount of calories today as they did 50 or 70 years ago. The biggest changes are in alcohol intake, smoking rates, lifestyle/exercise, dietary composition, and amount of lean muscle relative to body weight carried.

In general, exercise will keep one leaner by maintain muscle mass. Smoking and drinking keep one leaner due to stimulant effects and glycogen depletion respectively (I'm not going to justify why alcoholics have better BMIs than the general population - do your own footwork). Walking in general doesn't really burn calories per se but it does seem to inhibit fat storage by lowering insulin sensitivity. Dietary composition (basically macronutrient content), when tuned correctly (as it was in the 50s) will keep your metabolism burning hot with thermic effect and maintain low insulin sensitivity. If you carry more muscle its harder to get fat. Pretty self explanatory.

So where do modern Americans go wrong if its not through grievous caloric excess? The problem with a diet that's predominantly sugar and high glycemic carbs is that over time, calories in literally is not calories out. When the very fuel keeping the metabolic flames stoked will inevitably fuck your thyroid with insulin resistance and cause a god awful hormone profile then weight gain (here meaning simultaneous fat storage and muscle loss) will happen regardless of consistent caloric intake because the base metabolic rate drops as a function of muscle mass. Add all that nonsense to the birth control estrogen in the water, bpas and pthalates fucking everywhere, and soy infiltrating any and all food sources and pretty soon you start seeing an invasion of fat androgynous bastards tipping shit over on their rascals as they plow through every Walmart in the country. Also as insulin sensitivity goes up (hereafter referred to as the diabeetus) then hunger cravings also go up, generally prompting more caloric intake anyway.

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

Seeing these replies makes me sad. Just like alcoholism, obesity is a personal problem. The individual either lacks will power, access to a good diet, and/or poor genetics.

Government, parents, and food companies can contribute but ultimately the fault lies with the individual for being a complete lard ass. Until said person gets the will to change their life, nothing will change.

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

Isn't also the types of foods though?

I imagine 50 years ago, food was fresher and more natural.

Today, there is all sorts of shit in the food.

I think at one point Subway had something in the bread that was also used in asphalt or rubber mats or something before it got removed.

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Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

Way too much time spent watching tv (or any type of screens).


Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

I think the sudden rise of obesity rates, on a societal-wide level, points to additional systemic factors and cannot be purely focused on individual self control. Multiple factors including policy, socio-economic trends and bad nutritional research all combined to create a perfect force for the rise of obesity:

- Govt subsidization of corn and soy and the use of the processed versions in all forms of processed foods
- Nutritional policy which incorrectly demonized fats which led food producers and the population to move away from fats and increase the consumption of refined carbohydrates including sugar
- The rise of the two working parents which outsourced the feeding of their families to big corporations (Kraft, General Mills et al) who in turn use refined, processed ingredients like corn syrup, soy and unpronounceable ingredients in pretty much all of their products
- The influence of Big Food over Americans consumption habits...the billions spent on getting the best chemists researching and engineering the most flavourful, addictive foods and the billions spent on advertising said food is difficult to counteract by ordinary citizens. The responsibility of govt to regulate and have some semblance of protecting citizens is negligible especially since agencies like the FDA are captured by the companies they are supposed to regulate.
- Illustrating the control of Big Food over citizens' consumption habits, consider the concept of snacking. How many people here recall going out with your parents for several hours and NOT EATING anything until you got back home? If you were hungry you were told to wait until the appropriate meal. That concept is gone now. You are now considered a bad parent if you don't carry snacks with you for a 30 minute car ride. Again, this eating in between meals is a relatively new phenomenon. Most of these snacks tend to be refined processed foods as well. Rarely veggies and fruits.

I understand the concept of personal responsibility and I do see individuals taking control of their weight by educating themselves. However, to have an entire society get fat within the span of 30 years and blame it all on self control is unrealistic. It behooves us to identify the problem so we can at least figure out solutions. After reading Gary Taubes and Michael Moss, I cut out all refined foods from my diet (including so-called healthy grains like oatmeal and beans), focused on protein from healthy sources, and upped my good fats intake substantially (butter, coconut oil, lard, etc). Since my family is pre-disposed to chronic diseases like diabetes I educated them on my findings....took a while but several of them made the changes as well and the results have been astounding. I've had family get off diabetes medication, had their cholesterol levels improve, have had their aches and pain that they attributed to old age disappear. And my family was not one that ate a lot of packaged foods but they did follow the govt's nutritional policy which is very refined carb heavy due to their deference/capture by Big Agra. We ignored the food pyramid completely but we would not have done so had I not educated myself.

Anyone who has traveled to another country and found themselves losing weight effortlessly without changing their food consumption patterns or vice-versa, people who immigrate or arrive from other countries to the US and Canada and find themselves packing on the pounds fast leads to the conclusion that there are other factors besides self-control that point to the obesity crisis.

This article is what got the ball rolling for me:

It was the beginning of my paradigm shift. I highly recommend the author's book "Good Calories, Bad Calories". It's not a diet book but rather reviews and insights on the science and govt policy that led us to the obesity crisis.

Highly recommend this article as well:

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

Physiologically, the widespread use of anti-depressants is also a biggie.

Psychologically, I would also blame the decline of religion - when people with a spiritual need cannot satisfy their spiritual side, they need something to compensate the void - computer games, social media Updates, food - anything will do, but since the void is still there, they will binge on it.

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

[quote='samsamsam' pid='1108415' dateline='1441966896']
Isn't also the types of foods though?

I imagine 50 years ago, food was fresher and more natural.

Today, there is all sorts of shit in the food.

I think at one point Subway had something in the bread that was also used in asphalt or rubber mats or something before it got removed.


Its the quality of the food, which is poor to begin with.

Even Whole Foods sold out to the devil Monsanto. It is very hard to avoid food that is not made from corn or GMO food.

Somehow I would be surprised if buffet restaurants were around 50 years ago. The average American eats too much, do you really need 3 meals a day! Combine that with places like Starbucks, that make a fortune with their latte sugar rich drinks.

Only in America have I seen 7XL clothing and clothes that could cover a small family. Obesity is on the rise, seeing fat people use to be a shock but now it is the norm.

If you have travelled, so many other countries have such fresh and delicious food.

Our New Blog:

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

I am in the camp of Dr Robert Lustig, who claims that it is increased sugar consumption that is driving obesity.

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Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

According to recent research rich and poor children in the US get around the same percentage of calories from fast food.


Kids from low-income families are more likely to be obese than wealthier children, research suggests. But the relationship is complex, and scientists are still trying to untangle the links between income and such factors as diet and exercise that contribute to obesity.
New data make those connections even more complicated. Low-income kids—from households earning less than $31,500 for a family of four—got about the same percentage of their calories from fast food as wealthier kids, according to a federal survey of more than 5,000 people, including children of all ages, from the Centers for Disease Control (CDC).

But I really can't understand what is so complicated. It would be some of the simplest research ever conducted to determine what is making anyone, rich or poor, fat. Just institute a program to select a representative sample and then rigorously record absolutely everything each family/person in the sample eats for at least two weeks. Ideally double that. Of course you'd record exercise and general activity level as well. You won't be able to trust the subjects to accurately record for themselves. The more likely they are to overeat the more likely they are to be dishonest in their own recording. But universities have legions of pliant graduate students with nothing much to do. A little bit of money or academic credit and you have "volunteer" teams to follow your sample 24/7 to record and photograph absolutely everything they eat. If that doesn't work and you need more control hire a theme park in the off-season, move the sample in for a month and set up "fake" fast food stands, food shops/markets and so on. Observe and record.

But it seems nobody wants to do this sort of absolutely basic research. Why not? Because the "truth" is likely to be quite boring. Fat people eat more calories than thin people do. The actual calories consumed will be found to fall in line with the law of thermodynamics. In fact any brave person who is fat, but also has the, in general, very rare quality of self-awareness and honesty, should just do this sort of recording themselves. In my opinion they will find that:
1) They eat too much (too many calories) for their ideal weight.
2) The amount of calories they do consume is in line with their actual weight.
3) The vast majority(70+%) of their calories come from the cheap and nasty carb family (bread, pasta, sugar and corn in their various respective guises)

But no one needs to take my "word" for it. Actually they obviously shouldn't. They just need to be brutally honest and record everything they eat in for least two weeks and run the results through an online nutritional calculator. But they need to be brutally honest re what and what quantities are being consumed.

I'm not a fan of fast food companies, but it is not their fault people are fat. People are fat because they eat too much. "Why" this is is complicated, but it's no use pretending that we don't know that it is a fact.

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

Parents may set the framework for the child's eating habits but that blame only goes so far...once the child becomes an adult he/she could quite simply choose to break the chain.

Just like some of us will choose not to emulate our shitty parents when we have kids - no different

Far as fast food companies, they are doing only fulfilling their purpose which is to serve-Inexpensive food-fast...hell, it's in their mission statement

The capitalism we cling to has created the same competitive business model that makes it necessary that companies find ways to supply us our food with ever-increasing speed

Meanwhile, that business has to find ways to do that and somehow expand their profit margin. What results is a race to produce the goods in the cheapest way possible. Thus the creation of junk food. Hello artificial fillers.

So we get cheaper food, and fatter waistlines. True to form.

No matter how much people try to skirt responsibility - you control what goes in your pie hole. it's still about the individual and their choices


Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

I've said it before and I'll say it again.

Rewind forty years. The Women's liberation movement is really starting to heat up. More and more women are going to college to get college educations and hopefully full time jobs in well paying professions.

I.applaud that. I stand by it. If a woman works the same forty hours as a man, she should get paid the exact same money, period.

Merit schmerit, I've worked enough employment cases to know that only the politically savvy rise to the top. And global competition means that it's really the most savage that will win. China is sacrificing the health and lives of millions so that their factories supply the world. I digest.

But if a woman is at work, who cares for her children? Who goes to the market everyday, buys proper food, and cooks a nutritious meal?

Who teaches her children how to cook and provide for themselves?

Realize we're maybe two or four generations into this new family format. There are still people who lived the old way, but they're dying.

After leaving her pointless job in the big city, displacing a man in most cases, she didn't have the time or energy to make a dish that was both cheap and delicious.

So she gets fast food, restaurant food, picks up ready made food from the grocery, keeps easy to.cook (heavily processed) food stocked and snacks everywhere.

How do people stand a chance?

She doesn't even have the time or energy to pack.a decent lunch got herself, much less a husband or children.

So the sugary cereal that the children can make themselves. They eat a lunch at school, often provided by fast food companies. Snack machine has some token good stuff, but Lil Keisha and Manuel are not reaching for the unsalted peanuts. They're getting Snickers.

If Mom stuck something in the backpack, it's a lunchable.

For her own breakfast, it's a sugary drink from Starbucks. Lunch is a faux healthy cranberry and chicken.

Now there's a lot more fast food, a lot more restaurants, more advertising. The portions are bigger, and filled wth more carbs and sugar. Most of those industries are subsidized by the Fed, Much like the Fed subsidizes Big Oil.

Throw in the fact that we're less active than we used to be.

It comes right back to abandoning traditional roles. Man as the breadwinner providing for his family. Woman taking those precious resources and making the best of them. Together they raise the family. They had help from extended family but they also came together for extended family.

If the neighbors needed help, help was given.

I'm not saying this system was perfect, but the traditional way is the norm all over the world.

Returning to the ways of our great grandparents wouldn't address all the problems people face. Indeed places where this is still the norm have plenty of problems. Lot of them related to nepotism and corruption which find their roots in traditional societies.

But this obesity problem is not about sneaky industries tricking people into eating lots of bad food, nor is it that conservative copout of individual responsibility - it's the unintended consequence of the slow erosion of the family.

Why did this happen?
Aside from the good arguments for women's rights, it's also great economics.

Business interests ultimately want more people in the workforce for two reasons
1) cheap labour
2) more aggregate demand.

Women workers accomplish both.

You could de-sugar a lot of food, make it hard to open a restaurant, but the baseline problem that Mom isn't cooking everyday wouldn't change.


Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

The problem begins with government hell-bent on making citizens more dependent, and the media, educational establishment, etc. reinforcing that, following in its wake.

In a culture that is toxic to most adults, let alone children, parents are the last line of defense.

So the problem doesn't begin with parents, but most certainly ends with them. And they are failing miserably.

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

Quote: (09-18-2015 02:49 PM)WestIndianArchie Wrote:  

You could de-sugar a lot of food, make it hard to open a restaurant, but the baseline problem that Mom isn't cooking everyday wouldn't change.

Amen. I look forward to the day when, once again, "get in the kitchen" is something said by mothers to daughters, rather than merely a counter-feminist internet joke said by men.

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

Appearently it's all being caused by a thyroid condition epidemic.


Take care of those titties for me.

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

In Canada, I remember going to the gym with a friend (he was driving), and he was complaining about the unavailability of parking spots close to the door, and that he'd have to walk a long distance. When he finally found a parking spot, he walked to the door, and went straight to the treadmill.

Society in general is the culprit. In the States:

- A hamburger + fries costs around $3, while a good meal will cost around $20
- Girls are falling into the habit of eating shitty food thanks to feminists. "People need to accept you like you are". Right.
- Social media addiction draws too much attention, no time to go work out anymore
- And so on

Obesity - Is it the Fault of the Fast Food Companies, Parents or Both?

Companies will ALWAYS give people what they want, whether the company is a fast food chain or a housing developer. When a culture cares about their health, weight, and appearance more than they care about that fleeting rush of endorphins they get from eating fat and sugar saturated treats at every meal then companies will give them options. When "Supersize Me" guilted swathes of America into not supersizing themselves McD's added salads and other options. Marketing might tip the scales slightly but if a person falls for it they have no one but themselves to blame.

In answer to your question it comes down to more calories, about 25% more calories than 40 years ago.


Americans on average now eat nearly 2,600 calories a day, almost 500 more than they did forty years ago, according to the USDA, which uses food production data, along with spoilage and waste estimates, to approximate per capita consumption.

Over 92% of the uptick in per capita caloric intake since 1970 is attributable to oils, fats, and grains. Thirty years ago, the combination was responsible for roughly 37% of our daily calories; today, it makes up closer to 47% of our diet.

I blame the fat parents and the fatties themselves. I eat fast food - grilled chicken sandwiches with tap water and no fries, or grilled chicken southwest salad, half-pack of dressing. I'm not fat.

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