We’ve known for a long time that one out of three schoolchildren in the United States is overweight or obese. It hits us in the face every time we turn on the TV, open up a newspaper, or check the online newsfeeds. So these latest figures announced by the Centers for Disease Control came as no big surprise. However, New York City council member Eric Gioia, a Democrat from Queens, thinks he knows why kids are fat. Blame it on Mr. King, Mr. McDonald, Mr. Bell and even Mr. Hut.
That’s Burger King, McDonald’s, Taco Bell and Pizza Hut. And Gioia also knows how to solve the problem. If he has his way, he’ll have the locations of fast food establishments regulated, by banning construction of any new restaurants closer than one-tenth of a mile from a school. Gioia feels that keeping the fast food away from the kids will keep the kids away from the fast food, therefore saving their waistlines from expansion.
Gioia’s proposal was advanced after a study, done by researchers from the University of California at Berkeley and Columbia University found that students whose schools were within walking distance of fast food joints were five times as likely to be obese than students at schools that were farther away.
“A fast-food restaurant on the corner can have a terrible impact on a child’s life,” Gioia said. “Obesity, diabetes, hypertension — it’s a step toward a less healthy life.”
(Click “Next” to see Banning Fast Food Joints Near Schools)