Respite From Continuous Stream Of Bad News: 40 States Fatter Than California | The Informer | Los Angeles | Los Angeles News and Events | LA Weekly
Health & Nutrition

Respite From Continuous Stream Of Bad News: 40 States Fatter Than California

Comments (0)


Wed, Jun 30, 2010 at 3:56 PM

click to enlarge Mississippi on the left; we're on the right.
  • Mississippi on the left; we're on the right.

A new report from from the Trust for America's Health confirms it: We're not as unhealthy as the rest of really unhealthy America. Sure, we're pretty unhealthy, but for now let's take in the good news and celebrate with a Double Down.

California is America's 41st fattest state, sitting in the second tier amongst Utah, Montana and some states in the Northeast. Colorado is the fittest, which is not surprising to anyone with friends from there -- they're always hiking a mountain with a kayak strapped to their back while pregnant. Most of the fat states lost the Civil War.

This data actually matters a great deal to state budget writers, and there's public policies we can enact to improve the situation.

The report notes some stuff the Legislature has done to get a handle on childhood obesity especially:

--We set nutritional standards for school food that's stricter than current U.S. Department of Agriculture (USDA) requirements.

--We have nutritional standards for foods sold in schools on á la carte lines, in vending machines, in school stores, or through bake sales. Meaning, less junk food.

--We're screening kids for obesity.

--We have "Complete Streets" legislation which sought to give some relief to pedestrians and cyclists.

Discouragingly, we're 25th in childhood obesity, with 15 percent of kids obese. Nearly one-quarter of our adults are obese.

Health care comprises a significant share of public budgets, both through Medicaid spending on the poor and blind, and the funding of public employee health benefits. Obese children are at huge risk for Type 2 Diabetes, which is a very expensive chronic disease, so getting Californians healthier could make our tax bills lower, while also reducing significant suffering.

How to do it? Locally, we can develop more walkable neighborhoods and parks so kids can be active. Nationally, we can make healthy food less expensive and unhealthy food more expensive. We could do this by shifting money from subsidies for corn (which is processed into sugar for soda and junk food) to subsidies for getting healthy food in the hands of people who need it.

And that's today's nanny state post.

Email us.

Related Content


Now Trending

  • Dorian Nakamoto Is Crowdfunding His Fight Over Newsweek's Bitcoin Article

    Almost as soon as it appeared, a March Newsweek article that called L.A's own Dorian "Satoshi" Nakamoto "The Face Behind Bitcoin," faced questions about its veracity. See also: Language Doesn't Point to L.A.'s Satoshi Nakamoto as Bitcoin Inventor Chief among the critics was Nakamoto, who said the piece was downright wrong:...
  • LAPD Moves to Fire Frank Lyga Following Racially Charged Remarks

    Controversial Los Angeles Police Department Det. Frank Lyga, whose racially charged comments to a police training class prompted his bosses to send him home with pay, was recommended for termination by the LAPD's Board of Rights this week, a police official said. The ball is now in the court of...
  • John Deasy Might Run For Public Office

    Newly freed from the shackles of running the second largest school district in the country, former LAUSD Superintendent John Deasy took part in a conference call this morning, answering reporters' questions for the first – er, second, if you count his Morning Edition interview he did earlier. See also: LAUSD...
Los Angeles Concert Tickets