Friday, June 01, 2012

The Big Hole In Bloomberg's Health Kick

Just days after calling for an outright ban on super-sized soda portions in most New York City establishments, Mayor Mike Bloomberg saw fit to issue a proclamation honoring National Donut Day.

I'd say that's a huge hole in Bloomberg's health policy.

As it is, I doubt that Mayor Bloomberg would be willing to ban any serving of Waygu beef larger than 4 ounces (or any steak for that matter), considering that most 4oz portions of beef have as much calories as the size soda he's looking to ban (and beef has more fat, but more other nutrients as well).

If the issue is calories, why not ban super sized juices or milk shakes (those are exempt under the proposed rule). And if you're a soda maker, why not add other nutrients to show that the sodas aren't merely empty calories - one of the justifications for the ban/taxing of soda proposals.

Fact is that obesity is a problem but it's not only due to nutrition (or bad nutrition). The fact that so many people sit on their asses all day and don't get exercise is a major contributing factor. We simply eat far more than we burn off - and that packs on the pounds.

Portion control would go a long way, but that's personal choice too. And nothing is being done - either by individuals or the companies selling them - to deal with the super-sized portions at restaurants of all stripes. People keep consuming stuff without regard to the consequences. The calorie counts may help with that, but ultimately it comes down to the individual to decide what, and how much, to eat or drink.

Nothing is going to stop a person from buying multiple beverages other than the costs (which is an indirect tax on those who want to get those beverages).

However, if you're interested - both Dunkin' Donuts and Krispy Kreme are giving away free donuts (though I think you need to buy a beverage at DnD to get the freebie).

Bloomberg is busy rationalizing the discrepancy between calling for a super-sized soda ban and honoring donuts. One donut may be as bad or worse than one of those super-sized sodas, depending on what that donut is.

The reason he thinks he can get away with a soda ban is that soda will continue to be sold in other sizes, but he can't ban donuts (or other regularly sold food products) because of the uproar had he even thought about it.

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