|Future fat? Young women leave a Bogotá McDonald's |
with ice cream cones.
This NY Times story has got to be one of the most startling (and ignored) pieces of news reported in recent years: Immigrants to the United States, despite better education, nutrition and health care, are dying younger and suffering more chronic diseases than did their parents and grandparents back home, mostly in Latin America.
That's because, along with the benefits they find in the U.S., these immigrants also adopt U.S. habits, including too much food, especially fatty foods, and a sedentary lifestyle. The predictable results include obesity, diabetes and cardiovascular disease.
|Celebrating American culture! Lots of Dunkin' Donuts in |
(Hint: Maybe because corporations make huge profits from it.)
The recent book 'Salt Sugar Fat,' by Michael Moss, documented how big corporations aggressively market unhealthy foods to kids and adults with few scruples. Why should we expect companies to behave any better in Colombia?
|On the path to the American Way, forget traditional |
fruit markets like Paloquemao....
|...and head to processed, fat-packed products at chain stores.|
The chronic diseases caused by overeating create huge costs for health care systems and are compounded by trends toward sedentarism, fueled by increasing car use.
|These two people just bought churros - |
deep fried fat in batter.
Peru recently passed such a law, which restricts advertising to children and the sale of unhealthy foods in kiosks. The law is, naturally, opposed by stores and advertisers, which make lots of money by pushing harmful stuff onto children. But, incredibly, a Catholic Church leader also attacked the new law as a restriction of freedom and parental authority. Strange, isn't it, for a church that's so eager to prohibit so many other things. Or is it that abortion, euthenasia and gay marriage are moral issues, but child obesity and heart attacks are not?
In practice, the avalanche of junk food advertising just leaves both kids and parents at the mercy of predatory corporations.
|Vitamins! But the churros seller has the nerve to label their junk food 'nutritional.'|
|Another goal of the American way of death is to stamp out low-profit habits such as bicycling...|
|and replace them with the profitable car driving.|