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Saturday, March 16, 2019

Food labeling combats obesity in low-income communities - Vital Record

Information isn't sufficient to change behavior. For instance, the mandated inclusion of caloric value and the common labeling of healthier options with a red heart or green leaf icons on menus have not curbed the obesity epidemic. People make choices psychologically by what offers "joy in life." If something offers joy in life now but may harm later, we tend to choose joy now. Eating what you want and what you like now offers a bit of joy in life now. We'll deal with potential downstream consequences later...we'll practice self-restraint with the next meal or go for a jog tomorrow. And, we know how those self-promises tend to work out. Curbing the obesity epidemic will require more than labels and posted calorie counts. It will require acceptance by an entire culture that an alternative lifestyle offers more joy in life than the current.
from Rajesh Harrykissoon, MD

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