A study by the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity "suggests that living in a food swamp — a neighborhood where fast food and junk food outlets outnumber healthy alternatives — is a stronger predictor of high obesity rates" than so-called food deserts with limited access to nutritious food, says ScienceBlog.
A year ago, Washington D.C.’s Capital Area Food Bank — one of the largest food banks in the country — decided to turn away junk food, joining a growing trend of food banks who are trying to offer healthier options to low-income Americans. From soda to chips, the CAFB has reduced the junk food it supplies to its 444 nonprofit partners, including soup kitchens and food pantries, by 84 percent.
A large majority — 85 percent — of the parents polled about food marketing said foodmakers should reduce advertising to induce children to eat unhealthy foods, said the Rudd Center for Food and Obesity. The University of Connecticut center said that since 2012 support increased among parents for "policies to promote healthy eating habits for their children in the media, schools and communities."
Nearly half of the French population is overweight or obese, an unflattering rebuttal to the national reputation of responsible indulgence in a toothsome cuisine, says the Telegraph. Intending to slow the collective weight gain, the Treasury suggested two options -- a new tax or an increase on the current VAT (value-added tax) of 5.5 percent on junk food to a rate as high as 20 percent.
Better access to supermarkets and grocery stores doesn’t necessarily inspire people to eat better, according to a study out of the University of Illinois at Urbana-Champaign. In fact, researchers found that U.S. adults buy most of their junk-food at such stores. The findings fly in the face of the “food desert” theory, which holds that people in neighborhoods without grocery stores are more likely to eat unhealthy food.
A backlash is brewing to our age of food perfectionism, reports The Atlantic. With all manner of "experts" prescribing how and what to eat, there now comes an eruption of blogs, tweets, Facebook groups, listicles, Pinterest pages, and other celebrations of "dishes that are disastrous, unattractive, or just unhealthy."
The Navajo Nation will begin collecting a 2 percent sales tax next month on pastries, chips, soda, fried food, sweetened beverages and other foods with minimal nutritional value -- the first junk-food tax in the United States, says Mother Jones.
Americans buy more food, in terms of calories, after the year-end holidays than during the holiday season, often maligned as a period of over-indulgence, says a study in PLOS ONE, according to Feedstuffs.
First Lady Michelle Obama and AgSec Vilsack announced new school food rules that would phase out advertising of junk foods and sodas in schools, a follow-on to provisions that require schools to serve healthier meals.