Seeing a few comments about "personal responsibility" here. I used to feel this way, but only toward behavior that came naturally to me. For things I have to work toward, it's always a work in progress.
There are a good amount of productivity hacks and emphasis on time management skills on HN; should I dismiss those articles with a complaint about personal responsibility? No. 'Just try harder' rarely works. If it was that easy, you wouldn't have to try harder in the first place.
Personal responsibility exists, but the human brain is lazy and impulsive, and it takes a ton of outside intervention to get it aligned with modern society (parents, schooling, socialization, etc.). It's no wonder we have appetite control problems since we're dealing with human hardware that's hundreds of thousands of years old.
I'm surprised no one has mentioned the Seattle Sugar Tax . Forgive me I don't know much about it and I don't live in Seattle, but I saw this on the /r/seattle subreddit and was surprised. (I am entertaining the idea of relocating to Seattle from Austin. Thus, that's why I was browsing that subreddit.)
To avoid a nanny state, I'd prefer to see taxation and education be the sole solutions. People should be allowed to eat whatever they want, but they need to pay their own healthcare costs somehow.
Good. Sugar is a horribly addictive substance, and the outcomes of it's consumption and abuse are a massive drain on Australia's public health infrastructure. Hopefully however the sugar tax is coupled with some form of subsidy or relief from high prices of healthier alternatives (the groundwork exists with a GST exemption for fruit & veg) because obesity has a disproportionate affect on people in lower income brackets due to how cheap and easy it is to buy some processed garbage.
How about making nutrition facts label to tell me how much added sugar per serving. Yesterday, I had to search the internet to find added sugar in Chobani yogurt.
Then we make law to print warning labels about the danger of sugar on every product that has added sugar.
These would be more effective than tax.
I would prefer a war on processed foods if you absolutely need the the war metaphor. The sugar issue would resolve itself if people ate mainly real foods. For example: don't drink fruit juice but eat fruit.
I don't get why as humans we like to have "wars on things", can't we just educate people about things and use some self control to tackle these kind of issues.
I mean look what happened to "the war on fat", the sugar war will be no different. I feel that excess consumption of artificial sweeteners, salts or fats will be the next problem.
Watch: "That Sugar Film", "Sugar Coated", "Fed Up".
Sugar is not the primary problem. I eat copious amounts of sugar (probably too much). This ranges from refined sugar in sweets, lots of fruits, juices and even soda. I've been vegetarian for over a decade now, and my BMI Is 23.5, my body fat percentage is 14.5% and my blood sugar level is still considered in the good range for preventing diabetes. I don't think the problem is sugar, the problem is living a sedentary life style, and perhaps even eating lots of processed red meats.
My point being, a war on sugar is the wrong way to battle the obesity crisis. Get people to eat more fruits and veggies and to spend more active time outdoors.