Technology is Cause of Obesity Say Harvard Economists

Posted on Nov. 10, 2003, 11:31 p.m. in Weight and Obesity

David Cutler, Edward Glaeser, and Jesse Shapiro, a team of economists from the Institute of Economic Research at Harvard University have come up with a new reason as to why America has such a problem with obesity. While most people blame the nation's weight problem on fatty food and a couch potato lifestyle Cutler et al say that the real culprit is technology. Their theory suggests that advances is technology have made food more varied and convenient, so much so that our rather feeble will-power is unable to cope with the temptation. They also dismiss the idea that portion sizes have got bigger, saying that we simply eat more often instead. Furthermore, convenience food means that less time, and thus less calories, are spent preparing food. Put all these findings together, and the Harvard study suggests that food producers' innovations were the direct cause of obesity. Thus, while such advances may have made our lives easier in the short-term, they may also be making our lives shorter as well.

SOURCE/REFERENCE: Reported by www.bbc.co.uk on the 17th January 2003

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