By Casey Frye, CCNN Writer
Nobody will disagree that smoking cigarettes is terrible for your health, as puffing away on tobacco can cause health problems ranging from cancer to heart disease. What you may find surprising is that during the annual summit of the World Health Organization on Monday, United Nations (UN) expert Olivier de Schutter declared that unhealthy diets are a greater risk to global health than tobacco!
In fact, considering how controlled and government-regulated tobacco products are, the UN investigator said nations should move quickly to crack down on unhealthy food items by taxing them. He has also called for restrictions on junk food advertising and legal limits on food high in saturated fats, salt, and sugar.
Besides recommending negative business consequences for unhealthy food producers, de Schutter also called for special perks that make it cheaper for farms to buy healthy ingredients and increased support for local growers “so that consumers have access to healthy, fresh, and nutritious foods.” While he acknowledged that governments have been curbing the quantity of calories with their laws and regulations, he says it’s just as important to control the quality of those calories.
Why all the fuss? Well, being overweight can cause heart disease, high blood pressure, stroke, breathing issues, type 2 diabetes, abnormal blood fats, cancer, sleep problems, and weakened knees, hips, and lower back. And that’s just a few of the terrible obesity-related health problems!
Featured image courtesy of Vox Efx on Flickr. Image of smoking chicken courtesy of James McCauley on Flickr.