Mandatory Calorie Labeling To Induce Self-Loathing Before Seeing That Adam Sandler Movie

The requirement to display calorie counts on menus placed in ObamaCare by noted hipster and Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-Ct.) is making movie theaters nervous enough about popcorn sales to lobby for exemption, according to The Washington Post: (HT:Matt Yglesias)

Movie theaters and grocery stores are lobbying the Food and Drug Administration to avoid the proposed regulation. Theater chains led by Tennessee-based Regal Entertainment Group generate as much as one- third of their annual revenue from concessions. Congress didn't mention theaters in the law and the idea of regulating them never came up at legislative hearings, said Patrick Corcoran, a spokesman for the National Association of Theatre Owners, a trade group.

Naturally, the head of the National Restaurant Association and National Council of Chain Restaurants both want theaters to play by the same rules, noting that they are “competitors.” The Post describes the horrors of asymmetrical information that might result should theaters get their way:

If concession stands are exempt, a customer of McDonald's would know that a Big Mac meal with a medium order of fries and a medium soft drink has 1,130 calories while a theatergoer at Regal Cinemas would not know that a large popcorn with butter-flavored topping packs 330 more calories than the fast-food combo. A Big Mac alone has 540 calories.

The level of ignorance shown these menu-board guilt trips indicates that consumers realize judging foods on their relative calorie count is like comparing baseball players by their batting average. Even among those who claim changed behavior, the more visible information doesn’t do much.

More from Reason on government hating flavor here.

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  • ||

    I'm sure that Tony would offer that the guy in the photo would not indulge as he is pictured if he only knew how many calories were in those extra large extra buttered pop corn boxes.

  • ||

    I'll have four of those, please.

    With triple butter.

    And extra salt.

  • DNS||

    I'll have four of those, please.

    With triple butter.

    And extra salt.

    And a diet coke.

  • ||

    Don't forget the 12 scoop, three giant brownie sundae, with extra chocolate sauce and double whipped cream.

  • oncogenesis||

    Large diet.

  • ||

    But, but...he looks like he's enjoying himself. It's possible he might eat that popcorn anyway, just for pleasure.

  • cynical||

    I believe he would simply say the guy should be given a chance to do what progressives expect of him willingly before he is forced to do so.

  • ||

    Yup, the more people find out what's actually in the bill, the more they like it.

  • Mango Punch||

    There is a resturaunt in Murray Hill (nyc) called Cinema that shows black and white, silent movies during dinner. I used to live near it - it was always full of lame couples on awkward first (or second) dates.

  • ||

    Full of "lame pairs." "Couples" should be reserved for pairs who couple.

  • ||

    A couple of wise guys, eh? Not dat dere's anything wrong wit' dat.

  • ||

    The world is different for you now, isn't it?

  • dhex||

    that's kind of an odd pet peeve to have.

  • DNS||

    Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-Ct.)

    1) I'm not convinced of DeLauro's gender proclamation and requires forensic analysis for confirmation. I nominate David Caruso for this task.
    2) What is Rep. DeLauro's caloric content and why isn't it posted?
    3) Under this type of legislation, can Rep. DeLauro be regulated?

    (HT:Matt Yglesias)

    4) Is Yglesias starting to feel the fatty hate?

  • ||

    Congresswoman Rosa DeLauro (D-Ct.)

    Moe Howard called. He wants his likeness back.

  • Robert||

    I was thinking Marty Ingels -- plus a little Marty Feldman, come to think of it.

  • ||

    Popcorn itself is low calorie, right? So the topping must be made out of some sort of insanely concentrated substance. Is there a way we could harness this energy for the greater good?

  • ||

    Leela: I guess I was so desperate to find out who I really was, I forgot who I really was.

    Farnsworth: No harm done. In the many decades you'll work to repay me for that shipment of popcorn you destroyed, you'll have plenty of time to search for your true home.

  • ||

    She's learned to enjoy the kindness of strangers. Which she'll need with that freaky cyclopean eye.

  • MNG||

    I really used to like the Simpsons but just never could get into Futurama. It seems the show tries way to hard imo...

  • ||

    There are some pretty great episodes, you know. Maybe you should have Episiarch draw you up a must-watch list.

  • ||

    This may be my favorite episode, but that's because I love Calculon so much.

    "I only pray they like me half as much as I do."

  • ||

    Nah. Three Hundred Big Boys is the best one.

    "The Spiderians, though weak and gilrly in combat, are masters of the textile arts. Taste like king crab, by the way. The lazy bugs actually wove this tapestry celebrating my victory as I was killing them."

  • AU H20||

    Wrong and wrong.

    Best episode: Amazonian Women in the Mood.

    From the "Death by SNOO-SNOO!" to "This restaurant is built like a diner, but she handles like a bistro!" and of course, "Did you explain how the women's superior fundamentals makes up for the lack of dunking?" "Yes, they still laugh." It's the funniest Futurama.

    I'd say the second is "Where No Fan Has Gone Before", but that's only really good if you're into Star Trek. As a Trekkie, it is a brilliant parody.

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    Damn straight about the Snoo-Snoo episode. My favorite part is when we see what happened to the men that came before.

    "They die from crushed pelvises."

    We then see skeletons with ... crushed pelvises enjoyed after-Snoo-Snoo cigarettes with big toothy grins. That's how a man dies.

    Worst Episode: That fucking one with Fry's dog: Jurassic Bark.

  • Robert||

    Depends how you measure. Air-popped popcorn on a per-volume basis is remarkably low-cal. On a per-mass basis, not so much. Oil if used for popping gets absorbed and adds considerable calories, and there are all sorts of toppings nowadays that can be used too.

    I know a theater that provides the toppings separately; I wonder how that works with nutrition labeling. Presumably the toppings station gets a separate label, and where you're served the popcorn itself, the labeling would be based on untopped.

  • Barack Obama||

    But when you CHOOSE to consume fatty and unhealthy foods you are CHOOSING to increase your risk for health problems which in turn will affect health costs across the nation. Interstate commerce bitches!

  • ||

    Dear POTUS BO,
    Of course, restricting calories has never been shown to be an effect weight-loss method, nor even an effective weight-gain preventer. Much to the contrary, the ineffectiveness of semi-starvation plans is common knowledge to the chronically dieting public, and to doctors as well. Losing and keeping off even as little as 20 pounds that way is rare. So why does government and media preach it?

  • Mango Punch||

    So why does government and media preach it?


    Because coke is illegal?

  • ||

    YIKES! I knew pepsi had an in on the hill, but I had no idea... Tell me they didn't get doctor pepper not going through FDA approval!

  • Warty||

    Cartman: [as A.W.E.S.O.M.-O] Um... Okay, how about this: Adam Sandler is like in love with some girl. But it turns out that the girl is actually a golden retreiever or something.
    Mitch: Oh! Perfect!
    Executive: We'll call it "Puppy Love"!
    Mitch: Give us another movie idea, A.W.E.S.O.M.-O.
    Cartman: Um... How about this: Adam Sandler inherits like, a billion dollars, but first he has to become a boxer or something.
    Mitch: "Punch Drunk Billionaire"!

  • ||

    Hey there have you heard about my robot friend?
    He's metal and small and doesn't judge me at all.
    He's a cyberwired bundle of joy.
    My robot friend
    I like to dip and daddle with my robot friend.
    He's smart as can be and emotion-free
    And he's computed his way to my heart.
    My robot friend
    My robot friend
    My robot friend
    My robot...friend.

  • ||

    I enjoyed Little Nicky. There, I've said it. I can't take it back.

  • Spoonman.||

    The level of ignorance shown these menu-board guilt trips indicates that

    wat

  • omg||

    He just accidentally a word.

  • MNG||

    Why is it so horrible to require sellers to accurately represent their wares? I'd be against preventing anyone from buying and eating as many Whoppers as they want, but I'm not against BK having to represent their Whopper accurately at the point of sale. That increases voluntariness imo. What makes fraud appalling is the person is not getting what he thinks he is, the only difference between that and an ignorantly mistaken customer is in the former there was a misrepresentation. But in no way is voluntariness different in the two...

  • MNG||

    It seems like the difference between my view and libertarian's on this is that they would like to see the onus rest on the customer to find out what they are getting at while I think it should be on the seller (I think that in large part because, well, they would have knowledge of ingredients and such much more readily available).

  • omg||

    I think a reading of "What Is Seen and what Is Not Seen" should answer your questions to your satisfaction.

  • ||

    Do you make such a demand when dining at The Palm or only when slumming it?

  • Anonymous Coward||

    MNG, I hate love to be the bearer of bad news, but there are people in the world who are not motivated to do what is good for them all the time, in every situation. Some people don't even give too much of a care as to the quality of the product they buy.

    McDonald's has sold over 1 billion burgers. Are McDonald's burgers the greatest burgers in history of the world? No. Do they advertise their burgers as the greatest burgers in the history of the world? No. Then how did McDonald's sell 1 billion burgers? Because they're cheap, they're ready to eat, and they bear enough of a resemblance to food that you can hold it down after you've eaten it.

  • ||

    ONE billion burgers!?

    Just how long were you in that coma?

  • Anonymous Coward||

    Excuse me.

    Over 99 billion.

    But you take my point, right?

  • ||

    Then comes the question of what constitutes "good for them," "quality" and "great."

    [Damn my typing stinks today!]

  • Robert||

    Out of all the things that could be said about the product or service, how do you decide which they should be made to tell on the spot? Apparently according to the coffee spill lawsuit, it was the temperature that should've been specified. Didn't Bloomberg want to make it the amount of sodium?

  • Draco||

    "I will be satisfied with nothing less than a full specification of the positions and momenta of all particles in the product sold at the time of sale, from which all of the rest can be deduced."

    -- Pierre-Simon de Laplace

  • A Serious Man||

    If you've ever seen a fast food commercial you'll know that they NEVER advertise the health quality of their burgers. Instead they accurately portray them as being enjoyable to eat. Thus there is no false advertising. Common sense should tell you that that Whooper you're about to down isn't good for you in excess.

  • MNG||

    It's not about misrepresentation, it's about accurately describing the product. That way people know exactly what they are getting and that increases the voluntariness of the transaction.

  • DNS||

    That way people know exactly what they are getting and that increases the voluntariness of the transaction.

    How's this: "People, fast food is not optimal nutrition, but it's relatively inexpensive, delicious, and comforting. We leave it up to you if you wish to buy our product. Thank you and enjoy your meal." You really are the perpetual answer to a question nobody asked, Lisa Simpson.

  • ||

    There is no question that a massive fast food retailer would stand apart by its willingness to accurately inform its customers of the calories and ingredients contained in the junk which they peddle. Whether such an open and honest approach would yield greater dividends is an interesting question.

    Of course, I do not agree with MNG that sellers should be required by the state to disclose such information; however, I would applaud any commpany which had the decency to do so. I do say decency because, in and of itself, it is the better company which honestly discloses what its customers are consuming. In other words, ceterus paribus, the company which discloses such information is better than the company which does not.

  • DNS||

    Whether such an open and honest approach would yield greater dividends is an interesting question.

    That, my friend, is for the free market to decide.

  • Quiet Lee||

    This is NOT the fucking state's business. The time will come when the people will take up arms. The state can only push so far.

  • cynical||

    Yes? Forcing the seller to expend the effort to acquire information that the seller doesn't actually have in order to make it available to a buyer who is happy to remain ignorant is a deadweight loss to society.

    It's not a disclosure requirement, it's a research requirement, and one that that becomes particularly error-prone for items like food that are typically not produced with any sort of machine-like precision and vary from instance to instance, moreso when customers have input into their preparation (as is very often the case).

    Needless to say, it also a requirement that hurts small businesses much moreso than larger ones, as the cost tends to be proportional to the size of the menu rather than the actual volume of items sold. Even when very small businesses are exempt, it just means entrenched behemoths are favored over medium-sized upstarts; it also undermines the rationale for the necessity of the law when it can be waived aside as inconvenient.

  • Jeffersonian||

    "It's not a disclosure requirement, it's a research requirement..."

    One that you can be sure will be verified by enterprising trial lawyers.

  • oncogenesis||

    Why is it so horrible to require sellers to accurately represent their wares? [...] That increases voluntariness imo.

    It's not voluntary if it is required by law (i.e., coerced).

  • ChicagoSucks||

    I'm for mandating that nutritional information be made available to consumers but this is just ridiculous.

  • ||

    Why is it so horrible to require sellers to accurately represent their wares?

    To summarize thousands of postings on this topic:

    (1) It is a trap for the unwary. There is a lot of variation in meals.

    (2) Anyone who really cares about nutritional information can decline to purchase the meal if the vendor doesn't provide said information.

    (3) Its none of the government's fucking business up to the point where I actually cause quantifiable harm to someone by misrepresenting my product.

    I think that about covers it.

  • MNG||

    Why is the harm terrible when caused by a seller's misrepresentation but fine and dandy when caused by consumer ignorance?

  • A Serious Man||

    Do you honestly believe that donuts are good for you? How about lard? Again, common sense. Consumer advocacy groups can spread the word about the quality of fast food but the government has NO BUSINESS regulating it beyond punishing fraud and blatantly false advertising.

  • MNG||

    It's a widely held view for example that grilled chicken sandwiches as sold in many fast food places are "not so bad for you." The sellers have done marketing research that informs them this is what many people think. Why not give the information on the menu or wrapper? If they still want to scoff it down, fine, but what is so wrong with informing them? Is it just the satisfaction people get from watching dumb people engage in harmful stupidity?

    Don't you get enough of that at GOP nominating conventions?

  • ||

    "It's a widely held view for example that grilled chicken sandwiches as sold in many fast food places are 'not so bad for you.'"

    They're not, of course neither are most of the burgers either. The fries are pretty much useless as food goes (tasty though) and if you can eat your sandwiches without the buns they serve (which like the fries aren't particularly useful foods), it's probably quite possible to have a McDonalds burger every day and lose weight, and all and all lead a very healthy lifestyle.

    Fast food gets a very bad rap when it's really just the fries that are the killers and even that's a little exaggerated.

  • Warty||

    Lard is just fine for you, for what it's worth.

  • MNG||

    We use it for cooking, I agree, very little foods are cosmically bad for you.

  • zoltan||

    Seconded.

  • zoltan||

    Seconded.

  • ||

    Indeed. Lard is 47% monounsaturated fats, 12% polyunsaturated fats, and only 40% saturated fats. And only about 2/3 of the saturated fats are "bad for you." The rest is stearic acid, which is now known to be good for you.
    So lard is good for you by more than a 2 to 1 ratio.
    Besides, the latest science shows "LDL cholesterol" is bad for you, because of the "LDL" -- low density lipoprotein, and only a particular type of that -- not the cholesterol. And the bad kind of LDL does not come from eating lard.
    Why doesn't the government's dietary guidelines bother to tell us about that?

  • zoltan||

    The government is in the pocket of wheat, soy, and corn farmers. They take money from some people and give it to others to grow poison. That gets them votes. Then they justify it with an absurd food pyramid that places bread products at the base and encourage the average 2,000-calorie-eating American to consume 300 grams of carbohydrates.

  • KD||

    This

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    Sounds like you've seen FAT HEAD as well. I'm considering using it as an excuse to eat a lot more steak.

    It's too bad all those subsidies and government blessings on some farmers have helped crowd out those who produce shit our bodies actually need: namely animal fat surrounding animal protein and most vegetables. And no, vegetable oil does not count. I wonder if pork rinds are now on the side of the angels...hmmm...

  • ||

    Cool site, thank you sir! No, I did not know about it.
    My journey started with "supporting a coworker in going back on Atkins" at the request of another coworker 7 years ago. I agreed to do the 2 weeks and lost 20lbs, more weight than I had in the previous 2 years of a doctor prescribed diet and exercise plan.
    I decided to read Atkins' book (boy, the testimonials were a drag), then read everything I could find about research on weight loss, diet and exercise. (My wife is always kidding me about the "textbooks" I read.)
    One of the things I learned along the way was Archaeologists can tell exactly when agriculture became the primary way people fed themselves because of the change to a less healthy diet. Then, as they get richer, they eat more fatty meat again and get healthier.
    Discover Magazine did an article around that time called The Inuit Paradox all about how they thrived on a diet that excluded vegetable matter almost all year, and was extremely high in fat.

  • Colonel_Angus||

    There was actually a time when the government was the entity trying to convince people that lard was good for them.

  • ||

    And they were right about that. Look up rabbit starvation.
    A diet of lean meat without enough fat causes problems, including insatiable hunger.
    And lard has a 70:30 "good fats to bad fats" ratio.

  • ||

    At what point is the ignorance of the consumer the consumer's fault? For instance, fast food information is and has been available, not to mention that you'd have to be pretty simple not to understand that fried everything isn't exactly healthy.

    Another issue I have with the whole business is that it's one thing to compel disclosure, it's another to do so while exempting some groups, favoring others, and otherwise turning consumer protection into industry protection. Which is what has happened with things like food pyramids and the like.

  • MNG||

    Pro
    I agree it becomes their fault at some point. But putting it on the menu as opposed to having to ask for it when you get to the cashier after waiting in line with two kids screaming about the Batman Brave and the Bold happy meal toy and lines of people behind you...that would probably inform quite a few more people. What's wrong with having them more informed?

  • ||

    maybe they should ban the happy meal toy.

  • ||

    What's wrong with having them more informed?

    As a service to the customer? Nothing.

    Under the threat of violence for failure to comply? Give me a sec to put my finger on what's hinky about that.

  • Drax the Destroyer||

    Here's an idea MNG: If you want nutrition facts, and a restaurant does not provide them, DON'T EAT THERE. Start a website complaining about the lack of nutritional information. Petition the company (or small business) to provide said information, and maybe, just maybe, they might win some new customers int he process. What? That's too much work? It's just easier to give blow jobs to corrupt assholes "we" "elected" in exchange for stomping on the necks of those who don't provide your precious nutritional information?

  • MNG||

    it's another to do so while exempting some groups, favoring others, and otherwise turning consumer protection into industry protection

    Conceded here.

  • ChicagoSucks||

    The way I see it, free markets are arguably predicated on rational economics. Rational economics requires that consumers will behave "as if" they are perfectly rational. I fail to see how an uninformed consumer can behave as if they are perfectly rational.

    Prepared food items present a unique challenge to free markets. It's very easy to broadly analyze consumer food products in terms of "good for you" or "bad for you" but it's an entirely different thing for a consumer to make an informed decision weighted against say a food allergie. I think it's perfectly reasonable to mandate that producers of prepared food items publish or at least make available the raw ingredients of their products.

  • cynical||

    "The way I see it, free markets are arguably predicated on rational economics."

    Not really. A lot of microeconomic theory assumes rational actors (much like game theory), but free markets themselves can be seen as an emergent phenomenon that tends to arise when economic freedoms like property, trade, and contract rights are strongly protected. That is, if you assert a moral case for economic liberty, then you don't need to explicitly defend free markets themselves, they just happen.

  • oncogenesis||

    I fail to see how an uninformed consumer can behave as if they are perfectly rational.

    The consumer could, you know, ask for the information.

  • ||

    Ask? Ask?
    Where's the gun in that?
    I mean, where's the fun in that?

  • Ray Pew||

    The way I see it, free markets are arguably predicated on rational economics. Rational economics requires that consumers will behave "as if" they are perfectly rational. I fail to see how an uninformed consumer can behave as if they are perfectly rational.

    Free markets require no such assumption. Such assumptions are creations of the Neo-Classical Schools required for their models that amazingly never can predict reality.

  • ||

    Why is the harm terrible when caused by a seller's misrepresentation but fine and dandy when caused by consumer ignorance?

    It has nothing to do with whether the harm is terrible or not. It has everything to do with who should be responsible.

    The seller is responsible for not representing what the seller sells. It is not responsible for any given consumers baseline information about nutrition. Whether the consumer is a Ph.D. in nutrition science or an ignorant whackjob who thinks bacon-wrapped donuts dipped in corn syrup are health food is no concern of the seller's.

  • Ted S.||

    What if it's caused by CSPI?

    They were for transfats before they were against them.

  • zoltan||

    It's the guyyyyyyyyyy from CSPIIIIIIIII!!!

  • ||

    Yep. And CSPI called salt "the deadly white powder." Studies show halfing salt intake (no mean trick) lowers blood pressure at most 5 mmHg, which is rather like a 5'8" 365lb man losing 10lb.

  • Ray Pew||

    Why is the harm terrible when caused by a seller's misrepresentation but fine and dandy when caused by consumer ignorance?

    You continue to sling the perjorative of "misrepresentation", when none is occuring. Is the local farmer misrepresenting his wares when he sells produce that doesn't have a caloric breakdown? An analysis of total and fecal coliforms? Fungi? Mycotoxins? Bug parts?

  • MNG||

    "It is a trap for the unwary"

    More so than total ignorance????

  • zoltan||

    Ignorance is the fault of the consumer, not the seller. If consumers want to buy something they are ignorant of, they are more than welcome to do so.

  • Quiet Lee||

    Caveat Motherfucking Emptor.

  • ||

    More so than total ignorance????

    A trap for the unwary set by government fiat is a very different thing than going through life fat, drunk and stupid.

  • Quiet Lee||

    My concvern is that if they post the calorie content of buttered popcorn, some fucking bureaucrat inspector will show up, test the popcorn, find the number of caloies to be slightly inaccurate and then fine the theater.

    Governments are strapped for cash. In my city, they can fine you $320 if you dog is off-leash In your own fucking yard.

  • MNG||

    Well that would be misrepresentation, illegal even in most Libertopia. But I see your point, the government would force a representation and then pounce at any misrepresentation...

  • zoltan||

    If they are forced to do so in the first place, it isn't Libertopia.

  • Quiet Lee||

    "Well that would be misrepresentation"

    Bullshit. You think some 16-year-old concession stand kid is going to pump the butter the exact same way everytime?

  • DNS||

    You think some 16-year-old concession stand kid is going to pump the butter the exact same way everytime?

    Proof positive the Teachers' Unions need even more money.

  • cynical||

    A nice thought, but there's nothing to be done for MNG at this point.

  • ||

    Nothing wrong with more and better information, I think the issue is the government compelling it. amirite ?

    Another result, common to compulsory government schemes, is that they favor the large corporation. McDonalds can afford to figure out the caloric content of their Big Mac, but Wild Willy's Burgers...not so much. So does Willy get fined ? or does he get an exemption ? but if the info is so critical for the ignorant customer, where's the sense in that ?

  • creech||

    Compelling information is the problem. Where does one end? Why just with nutrition? Maybe some kid wants to know the name of the cow that got slaughtered for his burger. Or what state the meat came from. Was the tomato grown locally or shipped from Chile? How many minorities are employed by the chain? Do any employees smoke? How often are the aprons washed? How hot is the water used to sterilize the cooking equipment? Is the CEO's name spelled
    Shaun or Sean? Does the hot cashier have a boyfriend or what? No matter where you draw the line between need to know and silliness, there will be some busybody who thinks it an imperative of social justice for the restaurant to disclose.

  • ChicagoSucks||

    Does the hot cashier have a boyfriend or what?

    I think you just proved your counter-argument with this one.

  • Devil Inchoate||

    Should restaurants be compelled to disclose the level of microbes on five specified surfaces of their rest rooms?
    The level of CO in ppm in the air (both kitchen and dining area)?
    The MSDS for cooking oil used in the fryer?
    The concentration of phosphorous in the fertilizer used in landscaping the exterior?

    Can you agree that these are all things that it would be nice to know at all times? But what is the burden on the business person? Who is to judge what is necessary to disclose? In other words where do you draw the line?

    I for one like the calorie disclosure, but I don't like it being done by force.

  • Devil Inchoate||

    creech wins.

  • Congress||

    Why is it so horrible to require sellers to accurately represent their wares?

    Psst. Ix-nay on at-thay equirement-ray.

    On second thought, never mind. We're not technically "sellers".

  • Jim||

    Instead of nit-picking at restaurants constantly, why don't we just attack the root of the problem and outlaw being fat (unless caused by a proven medical ailment, i.e. non-functioning thyroid, etc.)? That way it puts the onus on the consumer to regulate their own behavior!

    I can't believe no one has thought of this before.

    Also, does anyone else have the hots for the daughter on 'Sons of Guns'?

  • ||

    Look up metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes -- both diseases involving insulin resistance due to abnormally high insulin levels in the blood -- and you will realize most "being fat" is a proven medical ailment. Insulin sends glucose to be stored as fat. If the insulin levels don't decline enough as excess glucose levels decline, remaining glucose is hijacked to go to fat as well. It also keeps the fat from being used as fuel when glucose levels are low.
    That's the big reason the low carb diet works. It suppresses the insulin response.

  • Jim||

    If that's the cause of "most" fattness (is that a word?), what is your theory on the sudden increase in those ailments over the last few decades?

    After a quick google research of those two items, I noticed that 1) lack of exercise, and 2) poor diet can be a major contributing factor. So ultimately the ball is back in the court of the consumer.

  • zoltan||

    Sugar and vegetable oil. Here's a clue, Jim: the obese people are not on low-carb diets. Fuck exercise, by the way (unless you're throwing around the big girl weights).

  • ||

    Correct.
    Increasing consumption of easily digestable carbohydrates (blood glucose) increases insulin resistance of the cells, sending it to the liver to be processed into fat. Eventually this gets bad enough the cells stop getting all they need, inducing more hunger and lethargy.
    IOW they overeat and get lazy because they are getting fat. They start on this path following the government's dietary recommendations.
    And while there are lots of great reasons to exercise, weight loss is not one of them. Remember the exercise craze hit about the same time the obesity surge started? Olivia Newton John's Let's Get Physical was a big hit. And exercise equipment and memberships have soared. When I was a little kid, people like that were considered exercise freaks. It was considered bad for you to exercise too much.

  • Jim||

    And as to exercise, it DOES matter. I didn't change my diet one bit when I left the army, and rapidly gained weight. I started running again, not to the extent that I did when I was in, but 3 - 4 times per week, and I dropped a lot of the weight again. That simple.

  • ||

    Don't get me wrong, I'm glad what you did worked for you, but this discussion is predicated on the idea that government recommendations and requirements will somehow reduce obesity. Are you or were you obese? "A lot of weight" to you is likely all of 20lbs, which would be an encouraging start for the obese, but typically of little practical benefit to a man who is a minimum of 20% overweight.
    In less than 10 months I lost 125lbs, over a third of my body weight. I did it by making good use of the science. I have kept the weight off since. In the world of weight loss, that's considered nothing short of miraculous, yet it was the easiest thing I ever did once I understood how.
    Prior to that, I had managed to lose a total of 15lbs in 2 years of exercising 1 to 2 hours a day and eating a low calorie diet and being tired and cranky (from the diet, not the exercise).
    An awful lot of body shape has to do with what you're predisposed to. Look at Jersey cattle versus Angus cattle. One clearly shows ribs, the other one you can barely tell has ribs. Do the dairy cattle get more exercise? Or are the Angus just gluttons? It's a matter of where their genes cause their energy to be sent.

  • ||

    The idea that eating fats makes you fat took hold after George McGovern's 1977 Dietary Goals for the United States. By encouraging people (on the basis of very poor science) to shift away from fats, it necessarily shifted them toward more consumption of sugars and starches (easily digestible carbohydrates). Glucose requires a lot of insulin, protein requires very little, and fat requires none for the cells to absorb it. Repeated pulses of glucose keep overfilling the reserves in the cells, encouraging them to stop taking it in. This is called insulin resistance, which the body responds to by producing more insulin. The extra insulin pushes the glucose to the liver to be processed and stored as fat. As the problem becomes worse, the cells get less of what they need because too much of it is going to fat to leave enough energy going to the cells. This is why type 2 diabetics tend to gain weight even when they eat less than normal people. It's also why they can go into "low blood sugars" (hypoglycemia) hours after eating when normal people can go for days without eating. The insulin still present in the blood will not allow for the release of fat to feed the body.
    The shame of it is, none of this science would be controversial if we were talking about farm animals or wildlife.

  • Jim||

    I'm still not hearing anything that shifts blame from the consumer. So is the vegetable oil and starch already included on the raw meat & vegetables you get?

    Hell, who even GETS raw ingredients anymore; it's so much easier just to buy that processed shit and heat it up. Ultimately, you have a choice: fresh fruit & veggies, with lean protein that you cook yourself so you know what's in it, or the alternative, with the starches & etc. No one put a gun to their head and made them chug vegetable oil.

  • ||

    The blame goes to the fact that the government has been lying about what constitutes a healthy diet. I lost 125lbs eating more fat, not less. My blood pressure, glucose, cholesterol, triglycerides, etc, all came down to textbook levels.
    Ideas matter. When the government decides to misrepresent reality in the name of public health, they do great harm. Now they want to use more force to try to fix a problem they made far worse starting 3+ decades ago.
    BTW, I get raw ingredients. But that's a matter of taste and texture, not health.

  • your "science" is wrong ||

    Actually, you might want to look up metabolic syndrome and type 2 diabetes because your statements on insulin are incorrect. Insulin is used by the body to HELP ABSORB glucose so that it can be used as energy. Insulin DOES NOT send glucose to be stored as fat. Also, glucose is only converted to and stored as fat when there is an excessive amount in the body that can either not be used immediately as energy (also making your point below about exercise incorrect) or because your body is not producing enough insulin so that it can be absorbed, otherwise known as insulin resistance. Basically, when there isn't enough insulin or the insulin is not used as it should be, glucose can't get into the body's cells to be used for fuel. Although the body will begin to make more insulin in order to break down glucose, the high levels are not what cause insulin resistance or fat. If you look up information regarding type 2 diabetes, you will find treatment for the disease often includes the use of insulin injection.
    Also, having type 2 diabetes does not always mean you are overweight or fat. However, you are more likely to high insulin resistance if you are overweight because fat interferes with the body's ability to use insulin. Obesity can lead to the development of a disease, but is not a “medical ailment” by itself.
    Finally, people can normally deduct for themselves whether what they are eating is bad for them or not and knowing something doesn’t necessarily mean that you care. While having the calorie content available isn’t a bad idea, I don’t think labeling Big Macs has decreased sales.

  • your "science is wrong" ||

    The only time high levels of insulin would result in weight gain is when the body continuously produces insulin even in the absence of glucose in the bloodstream. In turn, the body responds by storing the excess insulin as fat since it can not be broken down and used as energy.

  • ||

    Government rule number 1. Never, ever, put responsibility or blame on the individual voter. Media rule number 1 is similar. Never, ever put responsibility or blame on your viewers.

  • ||

    Government rule number zero: Never even consider the idea that government intervention causes problems, or that the solution to that problem is to simply get out of the way.
    Media rule number zero: Never even consider that yesterday's news has any intelligent causal connection to today's news.

  • zoltan||

    McDonald's should be required to offer literacy classes for those who can't read the nutritional facts on their menu. It's only fair.

  • DNS||

    McDonald's should be required to offer literacy classes for those who can't read the nutritional facts on their menu. It's only fair.

    They could arguably do a better job than the teachers' unions. Between the Hamburglar and Grimace, McD's does have experience with special needs people. But then they would be accused of indoctrinating their pupils with sedition and bad science.

    And what of the coulrophobics?

  • ||

    Those clowns can just be afraid of themselves.

  • davidst||

    I wonder about the legitimacy of existing calorie information especially for prepared meals (such as frozen food) where cooking times could significantly effect the calorie count by cooking out a portion of fillings and oils and burning it to a nutritionless crisp.

  • ||

    Wow.
    Love all the Calvinistic guilt that goes with the idea of diet and obesity in a group that supposedly believes in doing things to seek their rewards.

  • Red Rocks Rockin||

    both want theaters to play by the same rules, noting that they are “competitors.”

    How on earth these organizations compete with $7 tubs of popcorn, $4 hot dogs, and $5 sodas and candy, I have no idea. :/

  • Colonel_Angus||

    It is the legal responsibility of businesses to deliver what they advertise, and to compensate for any damage that they actually cause. I can't think of anything else that should be required by the government.

  • Truthy||

    Popcorn used to be popped with healthy coconut oil. But those spastic morons in gov't said that animal fat is bad - so they changed to 'healthy' hydrogenated soy oil... aka transfats.

    Never fucking listen to the gov't when it has anything to do with food. Actually, just don't fucking listen period.

  • Truthy||

    Fathead-movie.com, you can watch it for free on hulu. It is low budget but vital for everyone to see.

  • Robert||

    Coconuts are animals?

  • ||

    Coconut fats are good for you, even if coconuts don't eat the grass.

  • ||

    Listen the same way you listen for wolves. They claim they're harmless too, but...

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