The United Kingdom is banishing so-called “guilt lanes,” supermarket cash register aisles permeated by junk food. This is a necessary step in the nation's fight against obesity. But what's really needed is a comprehensive approach.
To help people avoid overeating, the kinds of policies effective in controlling alcohol consumption should be applied to food — standardizing portion sizes, limiting impulse marketing and reducing the convenience and salience of foods most closely associated with obesity and chronic diseases.
Obama called for “a year of action” to achieve his 2014 agenda — from helping people sign up for health insurance, to immigration reform, to completing the mission in Afghanistan. RAND is committed to raising the level of public policy debates and offering evidence-based, actionable solutions.
Is eating more fruits and vegetables the key to reducing obesity? Evidence suggests this may not be the most effective strategy. A recent RAND study of more than 2,700 adults found that calorie intake from cookies, candy, salty snacks, and soda was about twice as high as the recommended daily amount.