Tag Archives | Fat
So sayeth some Danish scientists, as reported in Science Nordic:
No, this is not 1 April — and this is not an April Fool’s hoax. Mad as it may sound, Danish researchers have announced a theory that may not only explain why people all over the world are getting fatter and fatter, but also warn of the serious consequences for life on Earth of continued pollution of the atmosphere by CO2 emissions. In itself, the theory is quite simple: CO2 contributes to making us fat.
This article proposes a new “transfer of energy stores that can ease our fuel burden” by harvesting human body fat for fuel!
“In energy terms, the average BTU of a gallon of human body fat is actually 11% higher than the BTU of a gallon of diesel gasoline,” reports science writer James Kent — noting that the IRS is already granting a 50-cent-per-gallon incentive for the conversion of other animal fats. (And he tells the story of a Beverly Hills plastic surgeon who powered his SUV with fat from his liposuction patients — plus his girlfriend’s SUV.)
While fat-sucking may seem like a strange response to gas shortages, there’s the equivalent of 637 million gallons of fuel stored in our fat, and the average person carries at least two gallons of high-grade biodiesel fuel in their body. (This article even suggests low-cost liposuction clinics — possibly covered by Medicare, and receiving government subsidies as an alternative fuel source.)”… Read the rest
Is Denmark’s new fat tax a just response to the societal problems caused by obesity? Or is it sweet, buttery tyranny? Via the BBC:
Denmark has introduced what is believed to be the world’s first fat tax – a surcharge on foods that are high in saturated fat. Butter, milk, cheese, pizza, meat, oil and processed food are now subject to the tax if they contain more than 2.3% saturated fat.
Some consumers began hoarding to beat the price rise, while some producers call the tax a bureaucratic nightmare.
Danish officials say they hope the new tax will help limit the population’s intake of fatty foods.
However, some scientists think saturated fat may be the wrong target. They say salt, sugar and refined carbohydrates are more detrimental to health and should be tackled instead.
The apartment complex in the Bronx is designed to help curb the residents’ obesity, with features such as “inviting” stairways. But, how does one make stairways inviting to people disinclined to use them, other than with, say, cups of soft serve awaiting on each landing? Blisstree writes:
Can the building you live in help you lose weight? That’s the idea behind NYC’s new “anti-obesity” apartment complex, an eight-story Bronx building called “The Melody” that was unveiled last week. The building was put up by a private development company, not the city, but units are only available to families making under $90,000 per year. It has a gym on the first floor, exercise equipment for adults and children out back, and “inviting” stairways to encourage residents to avoid elevators. Motivational slogans and signs hang on the walls.
I don’t think this will do much in the way of combating obesity — the kind of person who chooses to buy a condo in a fitness-friendly complex is probably someone who’s already concerned with diet and exercise.
It’s not exactly good news, but the United States is no longer the world’s fattest nation. It turns out that the rest of the world is gaining on us, putting on more weight at a faster pace. This is especially true in Pacific island nations and in the Middle East, where the United Arab Emirates Kuwait now represents the world’s fattest industrialized nation. Both regions seem to be struggling to adapt to modern, sedentary lifestyles over a rather short period of time.
The most recent data comes from an exhaustive country-by-country report on obesity from the Imperial College London, Harvard University, and the World Health Organization, which was published in The Lancet. A Body Mass Index (shown on the x and y axis above) is a measure of body fat based on height and weight.
Agence France-Presse via the Raw Story reports an interesting story about the London sewage system. A buildup of solidified cooking fat has become a hindrance in the flow of the city’s piping:
“A team of workers sporting breathing apparatus and carrying shovels has started clearing around 1,000 tonnes of fat from sewers around London’s Leicester Square, a water company said Tuesday.
Cooking fat being poured down drains under one of the city’s main tourist attractions is thought to be causing blockages.
Leicester Square borders London’s Chinatown and its bustling restaurants and cafes, as well as the West End and Soho entertainment districts.
The clean-up, which could take up to two months, is described as the biggest ever of its kind by Thames Water, the firm organising it.
Danny Brackley, one of those involved in the clean-up, said they could not even access the sewers at first as they were blocked by a four foot (1.2 metre) thick wall of solid fat.”