Should the Government Slap Tobacco-Style Regulations on Fatty Foods?

If the government wants to make progress in lowering obesity rates, it needs to start regulating fatty foods much the way it does tobacco.

That’s the recommendation from a pair of international health organizations pushing policies it says would answer the obesity epidemic.

Specifically, the groups recommend that the government control the way the food and beverage industry advertises, to ensure companies aren’t implying unhealthy food is good for children and adults. Additionally, they advise governments to require statements on food packaging about how high or low the content of salt, saturated fat, and sugar is in relation to dietary guidelines. On a broader scale, the organizations call for a reversal of food policy, calling on taxes for unhealthy foods and subsidies for healthy ones.

Consumers International and World Obesity Federation are presenting the global framework this week to the World Health Assembly in Geneva, Switzerland.