A(n overly) simple finding in the obesity fight

Baylen Linnekin writes for Reason.com about a new nugget of research in the fight against fat.

I was heartened this week to learn about a University of Iowa study that’s revealed what may just be the one and only simple truth behind the cause of obesity: “Obese people eat more food because it simply tastes better, a new study has found.”

This new research suggests a simple fix to the problem of obesity: by law, all food shall now taste worse. After all, if obese people eat more food because it tastes better, mandating that food taste worse will force obese people to eat less food. That will, in turn, make obese people thin.

Once every last obese person is thin, lawmakers can mandate that food may taste good again. No one will overeat because—and here’s the key—only obese people eat more food because it tastes better. With no obese people left, thanks to the success of my all-food-shall-now-taste-worse diktat, everyone will eat exactly the right amount of tasty food.

I jest, of course. But just like the premise that “obese people eat more food because it simply tastes better,” new research often doubles down on things that sound suspiciously obvious. Take a new study showing obesity is a risk factor for other illnesses. I don’t know what (if anything) was lacking with the old research that said largely the same thing.

Mitch Kokai / Senior Political Analyst

Mitch Kokai is senior political analyst for the John Locke Foundation. He joined JLF in December 2005 as director of communications. That followed more than four years as chie...

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