Friday, July 06, 2007

Federal Fat

Just days ago, I wrote about the uselessness of Kellogg's announcement that, to help fight the child obesity "epidemic," they would make their cereals healthier -- an effort I believe will have no effect on the eating habits and size of American children.

Now, a report says federal programs, at a cost of over a billion dollars each year, do not convince kids to eat more nutritiously, either. The Associated Press reviewed scientific studies of 57 programs targeting nutrition education, and found that 93% of them failed. Only four showed any success in changing the way kids eat.

One program gave free fruits and vegetables to fifth-graders, but the longer the program continued, the less they ate. Why? They didn't like the taste. Another program rewarded kids who ate fruits and vegetables, but guess what happened when the rewards stopped? So did the consumption of fruits and vegetables. Their eating habits hadn't been changed at all.

Have none of the people behind these programs ever been a child? Do none of them have children?

What's ironic here is that, while kids aren't changing their eating habits, those intent on affecting behavior still refuse to change their own -- they'll continue to throw good money after bad.

That money, of course, is really your tax dollars in action. And you were going to spend it in the produce aisle this weekend, weren't you?