The Newsletter 60 Summer 2012

Tackling the overweight problem: healthy Japan was no exception

Kaori Takano

Researchers announced in May 2012 that 42% of Americans will be obese by 2030. This rekindled the national concerns for children’s health in the United States. According to the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention, the prevalence of obesity among American children has tripled since 1980, partly because American society has promoted increased consumption of less healthy food.1 The problem lies in excessive access to sugary drinks and high caloric foods for purchase in schools, advertising toward children, and lack of regulations. Japan, on the other hand, has always been known as one of the healthiest countries in the world in terms of its diet, which is low in fat and high in protein. And so it was a surprise to find that even Japan could not escape the threats of obesity, and was no exception to the global rule.

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