Obesity and poverty

Can poor people only afford fattening foods, or do they make poor nutrition choices?

Are they more easily attracted to junk food by advertising?

More money or more education?

It’s not a simple issue. I don’t know how well researched this is.

Leave a comment

74 Comments

  1. PDB

     /  June 20, 2018

    Obesity is heavily linked to laziness, whether that be too lazy to do any activity or too lazy to cook up a cheap nutritious meal for the family. Genetics is but a side issue and not a major factor for most people that are obese. Children today are far less active than any other generation before them: https://www.telegraph.co.uk/news/2017/03/14/children-become-less-active-age-just-seven-major-study-finds/

    So called ‘cheap’ fast food and the like can easily be trumped in the cost and nutrition stakes by buying and making your own meals but home cooking is on the decline as are making your own lunches for work: https://www.stuff.co.nz/life-style/food-wine/104738597/counting-the-cost-of-packed-lunch-versus-buying-out

    Of course there is also the issues of processed foods over fresh food, and the affects of technology.

    Reply
    • Blazer

       /  June 20, 2018

      well there have been many ‘lazy’ M.P’s elected then…Awatere,Lange,Tolley,Bennett,….Gerry ‘craig’ still hanging…out!

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  June 20, 2018

        Anne Tolley’s not fat and three of the others lost weight.

        Reply
        • Kitty Catkin

           /  June 20, 2018

          The PDT could lose 20kg of ugly fat if they cut their head off.

          Reply
  2. More education needed and it is needed now, before we lose another generation to fast food, sugar and fat.

    The merits of pulses, lentils and alternative protein and the skills of budgeting need to be taught. Growing of one’s own food needs to be taught. Compulsory Cooking in Middle School should be reinstated.

    I was horrified when that Aunties charity group recently told people to stop donating tins of tomatoes and chick peas and asked for more chocolate biscuits. To me that is indicative that people within a certain demographic are incapable of making healthy nutrition choices.

    We need to address that at a govt level as it’s clear it wont happen by osmosis

    Reply
    • Gezza

       /  June 20, 2018

      If you want to seriously address this at government level you have to ban or tax unhealthy food.

      Reply
      • David

         /  June 20, 2018

        What is unhealthy food?

        Reply
      • MaureenW

         /  June 20, 2018

        You’re joking, right?

        Reply
      • Trevors_Elbow

         /  June 20, 2018

        No you don’t.

        That is a typical authoritarian approached beloved of ex Civil Servants and leftie academics….

        people need to take some personal responsibility for their diet and exercise….

        Reply
        • Gezza

           /  June 20, 2018

          Of course people need to take some personal responsibility for their diet & exercise, Trevor.

          But I’m replying to trav, Trev. If she wants the government to do something about it then that’s the fastest & most effective thing the government can do.

          It would make it a lot easier for people to take so e personal responsibility for their diet if they can’t buy or can’t afford shitty food & drinks. This would mean that companies would need to take some corporate responsibility for their contribution to the problem too.

          What would you like to see Maureen & Trev? Government paid eating healthy ad campaigns? Regulations requiring schools to include compulsory healthy food lessons in schools with tuck shops or next door to dairies & superettes selling shit food & fizzy drinks?

          Or just leave the whole situation as it is and let the cheap addictive shit food-pushing corporate execs get fatter wallets & the government wear the costs, taking it out of your wallet wherever they can? And stop complaining about people needing to take personal responsibility for it because if it wasn’t all around folk the problem would reduce.

          Reply
          • MaureenW

             /  June 20, 2018

            The problem is not “unhealthy” food. The problem is greed.

            There’s nothing wrong with 2 slices of white bread, nor a glass or coke, nor an occasional McShit Burger, it’s the quantity and frequency at which some people consume these foods. How did you want to regulate greed?

            Reply
            • Gezza

               /  June 20, 2018

              A cap on allowable executive salaries & banning or taxing sugary & fatty foods would probably be the best solution. Not likely to happen, so what’s your solution? Just leave things as they are?

            • MaureenW

               /  June 20, 2018

              You didn’t answer my question about how you regulate against greed and stupidity in consumers. Virtually any consumable product can cause health hazards if consumed in extraordinary quantities. Is the below story Coca Cola’s fault, or the fault of the store that sold it to her, or the fault of the government for not regulating how much Coke you can buy in a day, and would a Coke tax have fixed the problem?
              http://www.thejournal.ie/nz-woman-dies-after-drinking-10-litres-of-coke-every-day-792310-Feb2013/

            • Gezza

               /  June 20, 2018

              No, I did answer your question.
              You haven’t answered mine.

            • MaureenW

               /  June 20, 2018

              Sorry, so you did, I just didn’t recognise your offering as a solution to consumer greed and stupidity.
              The problem is often inter-generational and many kids don’t know how to cook. My preference would be to bring back basic cooking skills, nutrition and food budgeting in schools for all students.

            • MaureenW

               /  June 20, 2018

              Adding further, I don’t believe the cause of obesity is education, but I favour positive action in preference to banning and taxing. As I mentioned earlier, poor people in non-western countries are not obese.

            • Gezza

               /  June 20, 2018

              As I mentioned earlier, poor people in non-western countries are not obese.
              Poor people in non-western countries are often living on what food scraps they can find in rubbish tips, or on gruel made from some grain or other, whatever they can grow or get from Relief Agencie or the local mosque, & maybe a few small fish or caught animals, and insects. They don’t get enuf to eat to get obese Maureen. It’s their rulers & middle classes who are obese.

              What’s positive about the status quo? Have you shopped lately? Why do companies sell so much unhealthy food that’s particularly attractively packaged & quick to prepare & addictive for children?

            • MaureenW

               /  June 20, 2018

              I accept that some non-western populations are not obese because food is scarce, but there are plenty of other non-western countries who have low incomes yet still manage to cook nutritious meals – I’m thinking more Asian countries here.
              Have I shopped lately? Yes, I’ve been shopping for years. I’m one of those pesky people who shop around the outside, rather than down the lanes where all the processed, packaged junk is. Stuff in boxes is not “food” to me.

              Hah, someone I knew who fits the obesity, and not well off demographic, had people over for dinner. She produced 2 x bags of deli-style frozen potato bits, seasoned with sea-salt and rosemary, because she thought they were (wait for it …) classy! Cost her $15 for the two packets for frozen potato bits. For the same price she could have purchased a 10kg bag of potatoes, olive oil, sea salt and rosemary and had enough of that particular dish to feed her family for a month. Like I said, you can’t regulate for stupid people.

            • Gezza

               /  June 20, 2018

              You haven’t answered my question:
              Why do companies sell so much unhealthy food that’s particularly attractively packaged & quick to prepare & addictive for children?
              Maureen?

            • MaureenW

               /  June 20, 2018

              Those companies are in the business of manufacturing processed foods, they put them in pretty boxes for brand loyalty and product distinction. They sell so much because morons buy it and it’s addictive for children because that’s what their parents feed them.
              If people didn’t buy it, it wouldn’t have any supermarket shelf-space and it wouldn’t continue to be manufactured.

          • Trevors_Elbow

             /  June 20, 2018

            Publicly shame idiots who over eat and over indulge in shit food….Simple…???!!!

            Fat shaming is another one of those leftie ‘not your fault’ bs cop outs…

            People need to front about their choices and take accountability for the consequences of their choices..

            We used to have a ‘stand on your own two feet’ culture, we used to be a ‘number 8 wire we can fix it, we can do it’ culture… and guess what, we weren’t fat…

            Bottom line is overly processed food is not good for you in any sort of quantity. We all know this if we take even a passing interest in the world. If it comes prepackaged and prepared its generally not a healthy choice for everyday eating.. SO take some responsibility and make a meal from scratch 5 times a week so you know how much sugar and salt goes in to what you eat… its real simple…

            Oh and how about a weekly sermon from the pulpit to certain communities who are over represented in terms of church going and obesity??? (Nah! That’s racist, so I’m only joking…)

            Reply
            • Gezza

               /  June 20, 2018

              But, in terms of the government’s responsibility, are you suggesting they legislate to make these things compulsory?

            • Gezza

               /  June 20, 2018

              Re : Fat shaming, there were only 2 fat kids at my college, out of a roll of 300. One of them was in my class. He was quite short, white, & flabby & his nickname was fat pig. He wasn’t very smart & he was picked on constantly by everyone including the teachers. He had no friends. I think it probably just made him eat more for comfort & I still regret being too scared to intervene when he was kneed & pushed around by the boarder gangs. He developed leukaemia & died before he was 20.

              The other fat kid was well over 6 feet. He wasn’t particularly academically bright either but he was no fool. His nickname was Hercs. Anybody who fat-shamed him got their face smashed in. He was otherwise an ok guy so the best idea was just not to fat shame him.

            • Blazer

               /  June 20, 2018

              send an email to big barger Brownlee ..then.

          • Trevors_Elbow

             /  June 20, 2018

            No the government shouldn’t get too involved… some information campaigns…but otherwise stay out

            Reply
            • PartisanZ

               /  June 20, 2018

              How’s your “fat shaming” gonna happen then Trevor?

              Best campaign for the return of stocks on the public green first eh …

              When we were a marvellous, long ago lost ‘DIY No 8 Wire’ society, we were just fat in different ways … Those were the days of massive beer pot … and all the shite that went with that …

              Oh for the good old days … of Salem Massachusetts …

    • growing ones own should be compulsory for long term benificiaries, perhaps as part of the induction process get some training, seeds and sheep poo lol…..

      Reply
      • PartisanZ

         /  June 20, 2018

        Long term beneficiaries would need a house and some land to do that though …

        Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  June 20, 2018

      Obesity is a symptom. The cause is between the ears. Who put what there is the issue.

      Reply
      • Kitty Catkin

         /  June 20, 2018

        I sometimes see adults and children eating pies in the morning and drinking soft drinks whose colours indicate that they probably taste nothing like the flavour on the label. When i was a child, some people had things like fish and chips all the time and historically some people have always lived on the equivalent There were many takeaway shops in ancient Rome.

        There are many fat people who are obviously not poor, as one can see on city streets. Obesity can be genetic, in which case the person has to work at not letting it happen.

        The Aunties did themselves no favours by their refusal of things like chickpeas and tomatoes which, contrary to their beliefs, take little or no skill to cook. What’s wrong with combining them and having them like that ? The spaghetti that they wanted to give people is no easier to cook and has very little nutritional value, besides being laden with sodium in some cases.

        Reply
  3. Gezza

     /  June 20, 2018

    PI communities are likely to be dragging the average up. The kind of food they have become acculturated to is seriously fattening & this shows up in the dialysis wards down here in Welly. You can see renal patients with obesity related diabetes that’s caused kidney failure being visited by their families bringing mountains of home-prepared food that caused the problem while they’re visiting someone doing their dialysis in hospital. Breaking thru this masses of cheap but unhealthy food culture is a major challenge.

    Reply
  4. MaureenW

     /  June 20, 2018

    Funny how poor people in western countries tend towards obesity yet in non-western countries they are thin. Surely the issue isn’t therefore, one of education.
    From what I’ve seen of people I know who fall into this western obesity category, is laziness, teamed with lethargy and a morbid craving for dough and sugar.

    Reply
  5. Corky

     /  June 20, 2018

    Ever watched people running or walking? What have they in common.

    1- White.
    2- Middle class.
    3- Have a basic knowledge of nutrition.
    4- Have a normal weight.

    And..probably don’t eat white bread, or eat sugar.

    Reply
    • David

       /  June 20, 2018

      I can’t say that has even been an observation I’ve made. I’ve seen plenty of fat, non-white people walking and running and almost every runner I’ve ever known had not a clue about nutrition. And every runner I’ve ever known consumes sugar.

      Reply
      • Corky

         /  June 20, 2018

        ‘I can’t say that has even been an observation I’ve made.”

        If you have seen plenty of fat non-white people walking then by simple extrapolation that should mean many of such folk across the country should be reasonably healthy. But that’s not the case. Polynesian health stats are terrible.

        Maybe demographic areas have something to do with things. But again, I have not found that, even in high population Polynesian areas.

        ”And almost every runner I’ve ever known had not a clue about nutrition. And every runner I’ve ever known consumes sugar.”

        How do you know that? Did you ask them? I have while doing a course at Polytech.
        Although, admittley. I didn’t ask about bread, and the sample group was only 50 people over three months. And it was six years ago. Nutritional knowledge has skyrocketed amongst the middle class during that time. But not amongst Polynesian, would be my guess.

        Reply
        • Blazer

           /  June 20, 2018

          whats the nutritional value of raspberry buns there Corky?
          you still tipping the scales at 100kg plus?

          Reply
          • Corky

             /  June 20, 2018

            102.5 kgs. Talking about tipping the scales, you could lose a little off your posterior. You need to do a set of Kettlebell swings every hour to counteract the 10 plus hours a day spent posting.

            Reply
            • PDB

               /  June 20, 2018

              The average brain weighs in around 3 pounds so at least Blazer doesn’t have that adding to his total weight.

            • Blazer

               /  June 20, 2018

              @PDB….you must be well burdened wiht all that saw dust between your …ears.

            • Corky

               /  June 20, 2018

              Lol..PDB. I must confess I’m worried for the health of Blazer and Parti this coming Sunday when Sunday interviews a banking insider about NZ banking practices. Stress and poverty, plus a non- nutrient dense diet may finish them off.

        • David

           /  June 20, 2018

          “Polynesian health stats are terrible.”

          Yes they are. That data is far more useful that making guesses based on your observation about who is a jogger. For a start you avoid the selection bias inherent in who is a jogger and who is not, and that’s before you factor in where you live and who you see.

          “How do you know that? Did you ask them? I have while doing a course at Polytech.”

          I know that because to a large degree that is what the data tells us. And that was using a much larger data set than you did.

          “Although, admittley. I didn’t ask about bread, and the sample group was only 50 people over three months.”

          Runners eat carbs. Bread and sugar will be staples for most.

          Fun facts about joggers in the US;

          68% are married
          Cluster in the 35-54 age group
          70%+ degree educated
          Likely to believe they are gluten intolerant.
          Cluster in the middle income group $35-90k pa
          Average male weight 172lbs
          Average male BMI 24.4
          53% are unhappy with their weight
          75% have had an injury in the last 12 months.

          Data is from a national survey of several hundred thousand and is likely biased towards ‘serious’ runners.

          Reply
          • David

             /  June 20, 2018

            Just to add the race figures;

            88% white, against a general population figure of 72%.
            African Americans don’t like jogging.

            Reply
            • Gezza

               /  June 20, 2018

              Hardly surprising. If a bro doesn’t shoot them a cop will.

            • Corky

               /  June 20, 2018

              Just to answer two of your points.

              ”Runners eat carbs. Bread and sugar will be staples for most.”

              I’m talking about fitness, not pro runners. As in my point of ” runners and walkers.” i don’t think many people go to the track to watch people run.
              My interviews took place on the street and I did cop some abuse ( people who keep fit don’t like stopping. However, most came around when I explained my motive).

              ‘That data is far more useful that making guesses based on your observation about who is a jogger. For a start you avoid the selection bias inherent in who is a jogger and who is not, and that’s before you factor in where you live and who you see.”

              Nice bit of Goggly Gook there, Dave. Either Polynesian are running or not. Guess what? I didn’t interview one because there were none to interview. My observations bear out the stats with regards to the importance of exercise and lack of Polynesian participation.

              So we get back to my original post. I guess the difference is , Dave, I have used observation and actually interviewed some of these people.

              You have relied on a a Google search.

            • Corky

               /  June 20, 2018

              Forgot to mention:

              ”Runners eat carbs. Bread and sugar will be staples for most.”

              That is not true anymore. Many runners are switching to a high fat diet to counteract the spikes of blood sugar carbs create. Carb loading is not as popular as it was. I’m not say it’s dead yet.

            • David

               /  June 20, 2018

              “Either Polynesian are running or not. Guess what? I didn’t interview one because there were none to interview. ”

              Try a rugby club.

              “My observations bear out the stats with regards to the importance of exercise and lack of Polynesian participation.”

              Was this a serious attempt at this? One person randomly stopping people in the street?

            • David

               /  June 20, 2018

              “You have relied on a a Google search.”

              Yes. It accesses a vastly greater volume of data that you can standing on the sidewalk.

              “That is not true anymore. Many runners are switching to a high fat diet to counteract the spikes of blood sugar carbs create. Carb loading is not as popular as it was. I’m not say it’s dead yet.”

              Well, I know quite a lot about high fat diets (keto, CKD, TKD etc) and athletic performance (specifically weight lifting). Anyone doing endurance work at any serious , or even half arsed level is going to typically perform worse on this type of diet. There are some exceptions to this, some people are simply better suited to low carb diets than others, but it’s exactly that, exceptions. Spiking blood sugar would be an important part of getting performance from these diets too, the ability to do this is one of the keys to performing on low carb diets. Loss of insulin sensitivity is one of the things your trying to combat on low carb diets.

              The Ketogenic Diet by Lyle Mcdonald would be the best reference source for you.

            • David

               /  June 20, 2018

              Just to add, this might be worth a read. Just note the tiny sample size. I haven’t read it btw.

              https://www.ncbi.nlm.nih.gov/pubmed/28706467

            • Corky

               /  June 20, 2018

              ”Anyone doing endurance work at any serious , or even half arsed level is going to typically perform worse on this type of diet.”

              There’s a simple reason for that…their body is not in ketosis. So it is
              burning fat inefficiently. For the keto diet to work your body must be accustomed to working in ketosis.

            • Corky

               /  June 20, 2018

              ”Try a rugby club.”

              And when rugby is finished? What problem do the All Blacks have with some Pollly players? They become fat slobs in the off season because they don’t equate fitness as being part of a life style, unlike a white bank manager who walks five nights a week year around.

            • David

               /  June 20, 2018

              “There’s a simple reason for that…their body is not in ketosis. So it is
              burning fat inefficiently. For the keto diet to work your body must be accustomed to working in ketosis.”

              I understand what a ketogenic diet it.

              By definition a keto diet required the body to be in ketosis. It’s not complex, you will switch into this 2-3 days into said diet once muscle glycogen has been depleted.

              I really suggest you read Lyle’s work on this.

            • David

               /  June 20, 2018

              ” They become fat slobs in the off season because they don’t equate fitness as being part of a life style, unlike a white bank manager who walks five nights a week year around.”

              Low carb diets may be a solution to some of this, that is a cultural bridge that isn’t going to be easy to cross. The benefit of this would be it’s effective at addressing things like type 2 diabetes.

              Jogging, on the other hand, is simply not a solution for anything.

            • David

               /  June 20, 2018

              Another interesting read, but alas no link to the actual paper.

              https://drbubbs.com/blog/2017/3/7-effects-of-ketogenic-diet-on-weekend-warrior-athletes

          • PartisanZ

             /  June 20, 2018

            The fact is that in our corporate-capitalist society a lot of what we call “business” would, in a more ethical world, be deemed scams and frauds …

            Fad Diets and a lot of Fast Foods are prime examples …

            Reply
  6. its a lot of factors, even as much as extra work hours with both parents at work due to low incomes leaves little time for a conventional dinner, so quick meals are often the go. (chicken drums and fries are my laze meal) With a relatively disabled wife I am guilty of the same, she cant do her share of the mahi, so I’m working, cooking and parenting what feels like solo sometimes, so the conventional meat and 3 veg is out the door usually.

    Reply
    • MaureenW

       /  June 20, 2018

      Something that worked for me was cooking double amounts of slow-cook meat cuts on the weekend, eating one and freezing one, gradually building up until I had freezer supplies of cooked meals to cover for 3 days per week, and making faster short-cut meals on the other days.

      Reply
  7. Blazer

     /  June 20, 2018

    In the early 1900’s the average AB was 5 9′ and weighed 11 stone.

    Reply
    • PDB

       /  June 20, 2018

      Which has nothing to do with obesity…

      Reply
      • Blazer

         /  June 20, 2018

        as if laziness has.

        Reply
        • David

           /  June 20, 2018

          In the early 1900’s almost everyone worked a physical job.

          Reply
          • Kitty Catkin

             /  June 20, 2018

            That isn’t accurate, David, It’s a generalisation that doesn’t stand up to scrutiny.

            Reply
        • PDB

           /  June 20, 2018

          “as if laziness has”

          Are you living in a bubble by any chance? Takes a very special person to not link declining levels of physical activity over the decades to increased obesity over the same period. In the 1970’s a fat person was a rarity compared to today where it is the norm. Nowadays schools want to get rid of things like cross country because kids don’t like having to do it.

          Reply
          • Kitty Catkin

             /  June 20, 2018

            We didn’t, either.

            Reply
            • PDB

               /  June 20, 2018

              Nor I – but we did it, trained before every lunchtime leading up to the event and no doubt were a little bit fitter for it.

            • Kitty Catkin

               /  June 20, 2018

              We bunked off whenever possible. If there were two options, we were always at the other one, in reality lying in the grass – I forget where, now – reading, talking, chewing grass stems or doing things like lying flaton our faces, which makes grass look like a jungle.

  8. PartisanZ

     /  June 20, 2018

    “Here’s how I see obesity: as a symptom. The larger problem is over-consumption. In a society that identifies consumption with patriotism, valorizes ‘growth’ above all else and assigns status according to how much you consume, we compete with each other to see who can consume the most.” – Emily Levine

    “Contradictory as it seems, malnutrition is a key contributor to obesity” – Madeleine M. Kunin

    The “persuasion architecture” of capitalist production and advertising puts it there Alan – between people’s ears – or more correctly embeds it in their psyches – you ‘want’ this product we’ve called food, despite our production process removing almost all the nutrition from it, to save costs, of course, and make it more ‘affordable’ for you, our valued customers …

    “Obesity in children is growing out of control. A big part of this is economic. Fake foods are more affordable. It’s enticing people to eat more because they think they’re saving money when they’re really just buying heart disease.” – Jillian Michaels

    Reply
    • Alan Wilkinson

       /  June 20, 2018

      I think at base it is a reaction to anxiety – comfort food and drink. Then this becomes a habit and way of life to the family and community.

      To break it requires reducing and better coping with anxiety as well as breaking habits and changing communal life. Not easy.

      Reply
      • PartisanZ

         /  June 20, 2018

        You’re right about anxiety … and capitalism creating ever more anxiety ain’t gonna fix it …

        It’ll sell a shitload more comfort food though … eh? With ripple effects through education, health, welfare and even justice …

        Did you say “changing communal life” Alan!? Tut tut!

        You mean like a massive government sponsored education program to undermine the activities of the corporate-elites who dictate, at best, who the government are or, at worst, what the government does …

        Dog attacks are a perfect analogy … It’s not about the ‘breed’ of food manufacturer … its about learning how to be ‘safe’ around any breed of food manufacturer …

        Let the food manufacturer dictate … like we let the dogs dictate …

        Reply
        • PartisanZ

           /  June 20, 2018

          Mind you … we do have a beacon of hope … Tobacco …

          Reply
          • PartisanZ

             /  June 20, 2018

            Given the right convictional impetus, and a touch of bogey-man, public health and private harm may even be deemed to override freedom of choice … and it’s possible to virtually outlaw something … while simultaneously creating a new criminal black market …

            Would Fast Food do this I wonder?

            KFC ‘Speakeasies’ … and ‘Bootleg’ Makkas

            Reply
            • PartisanZ

               /  June 20, 2018

              Or, in the case of cannabis, given the wrong ‘influences’ and a massive helping of bogey-man, it’s possible to outlaw something that’s evidently and provably ‘good’ for us …

              When you think about it, Freedom of Choice gets over-ridden a great deal in our so-called ‘free’ society …

              … sometimes for very good reason … to contain, for instance, the excesses of unbridled capitalism …

Leave a Reply

Fill in your details below or click an icon to log in:

WordPress.com Logo

You are commenting using your WordPress.com account. Log Out /  Change )

Google+ photo

You are commenting using your Google+ account. Log Out /  Change )

Twitter picture

You are commenting using your Twitter account. Log Out /  Change )

Facebook photo

You are commenting using your Facebook account. Log Out /  Change )

w

Connecting to %s