Children Choking On Their Own Fat

3 year old dies from obesity.

Now I’m all for people taking responsibility for their own food intake. But in cases like this you have to wonder what the hell kind of society we’re creating. Sure, you can blame the parents, but the evidence suggests that parents (and people in general) need protecting from their own stupidity and the ruthless marketing of the junk food industry.

Certain classes of food should be regulated in exactly the same way as tobacco. It’s a sad statement of the human condition, but given the means and left to their own devices too many people are just greedy.

I’m not getting into arguments about individual cases and “it’s my glands” here. I’m just speaking generally. In modern Western society it’s too easy to stuff your face with junk and be a lazy slob. We need to change this before the current generation starts outliving the next.

I agree that there is a big problem that needs addressing, but is it the food that is the problem or is it English culture that needs addressing?

How many parents are cooking their children a healthy meal, and how many are nuking processed crap is what i’m wondering.

What evidence? I think you have intelligence confused with discipline. From your own cite, Dr Nigel Meadows says, “Some may say the parents are responsible, but if a child is demanding food it can be very difficult to refuse it.” Frankly, what parents (and people in general) need protection from is authoritarian know-it-alls who think everybody else besides them is stupid.

Er…“no” is still only spelled with two letters, right? How is that difficult?

I think parents who always give their child what they ‘demand’ are stupid and no better than children themselves. The evidence in the field is clear: both parent and child can’t be trusted to moderate their greed by themselves.

What evidence?


The fact that obesity has risen to a scary level in the UK and Ireland and everywhere else in Europe even though there has been info about this for some time now.

Food production needs to be regulated and adequate warnings placed on food items.

This may go against your libertarian values but it’s now going to stop it over here.

We’ve put warnings on cigarettes and stopped some forums of advertisements, why not food? Obesity is becoming as big a problem as smoking and also a very expensive one.

I’m sorry, but it has to be said - What the hell were the parents thinking?!

The other problem is that in the UK there is a publicly-funded health service. The strain that obesity-related illnesses are putting on it could mean that it is no longer viable in 10 years. Since the vast majority of the UK population wish to keep this health service, the government has to do something to prevent the epidemic.

What would you suggest should be done, Lib? Nothing?

It’s very hard to protect people from their own dumb choices - if we should even try to do so. Unless people from the junk food industry have started force-feeding little kids, they’re not the ones to blame. The problem is people who are being stupid.

Your handle is Futile Gesture, and that’s exactly what this sounds like.

So the government has to protect people from junk food because they’re too dumb to do it themselves?

But how do you regulate stupidity, ignorance and laziness?

Gargh it drives me nuts when people blame an industry for something that plain and simple intelligence would avoid. First of all, I dunno about the UK, but I’m fairly certain food there DOES have labels - the Nutrition Labels. Secondly, any parent who watches their child balloon up to over 80 pounds at the age of 3 years old without saying, “Holy shit why the hell is my kid getting so fat,” is just unconscionably ignorant. I refuse to believe that the child didn’t have at least one medical incident before her death that didn’t bring her into contact with a medical professional. This person didn’t say “Holy shit, your child is getting huge! Replace his candy bars with apples”?

Fuck me man, blame stupidity, blame ignorance, blame laziness, but don’t fucking blame an industry which happens to have plenty of consumers who know the meaning of the word moderation.

That said, I don’t have numbers, and I’m about to head to work… But is the UK rate of obesity much different/worse than the US? I can’t imagine they’re too far ahead of the pack in this.

It seems to me that those MPs are simply using the death of this 3yo child to advance their agenda.

Besides, they have been flirting before with ideas such as the “Fat Tax” (putting a special tax of fatty foods).

To clarify, because after posting, I realized my post could be taken the wrong way. I in no way was trying to imply people who suffer from obesity are stupid, ignorant or lazy.

However, I daresay, any mother who actually gives her child unrestricted access to food to the point where her child dies from obesity-related heart failure at age 3, is all of the above.

It’s one word, two little letters, “No”.

“No, you cannot eat an entire bag of potato chips, but I’ll tell you what, here’s an apple, why don’t you go play outside?” (If you do not subscribe to the “Because I said so” method of parenting)

If someone cannot even muster the will to enforce enough discipline as to not allow the child to eat himself to death, I most gravely question their ability to parent at all.

New advertising legislation is in the pipeline in Ireland at any rate which prohibits adverts for processed foods and snacks and other junky food products being shown during children’s television programmes. Ads with sports stars or other aspirational figures will be barred from advertising any of these products to children in the Irish media.

I’ll see if I can find a link.

I know that the TV stations are up in arms about it, based on their fears of loss of advertising revenue. Since we get all the UK telly as well, consrtraints on advertising on Irish channels will probably be diluted as the kids can still see the “banned” ads on the foreign telly.

So this is an attempt to re-educate the kids and reduce pester power. It’ll be interesting to see how it pans out

You don’t.

You can control advertising practises, proper labelling and removal of misleading info on packaging, targets on lowering salt and fat levels in food especially those aimed at children for a start.

I think it’s likely that nobody wants to be seen blaming the bereaved parents, so they’re taking it out on the snack food companies because the public is less likely to flip out over it.

Yeesh! I know analogies are never exact, but the difference between food and tobacco products is such a significant one that the analogy fails because of it.

There is a certain amount of ‘unhealthy’ food that can be incorporated into a ‘healthy’ diet - the fats, proteins etc that you get from an occasional trip to McD’s can actually be beneficial to your overall health, if they are treated sensibly in the context of a balanced diet.

As far as I know, there is no amount of smoking that is beneficial to your health.

Legislation is the wrong way to deal with this problem because the problem itself has stupidity(or ignorance, if you prefer) as a significant component. Enacting laws to protect people from their own stupidity could actually make the problem worse - why bother to think about something when the government will do your thinking for you wholesale?

It would be better to invest the resources in education.

Come on! When something is publicly funded, it means it is funded with taxpayer’s money. Taxpayers have payed for that service, and they have payed dearly.

Maybe it’s time for government to declare a War on Stupidity. Perhaps it will be as successful as the War on Drugs and the War on Terrorism.

And thus it would be a distinct problem if it went bankrupt.