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Should Fast Food Companies Be Blamed in Causing Obesity?

June 30th, 2010 · 8 Comments ·


With obesity becoming a health issue among kids, government from different countries are taking steps to discourage them from eating fast food. In June 2007, Malaysia Government has banned fast food companies from sponsoring television shows for children or advertising during children’s programs. The Healthy Ministry believed that the television advertisements has a higher influence on children aged 12 and below compared with other media such as newspaper and radio.

Also, fast food companies are instructed to display the nutritional content of their food in large print on wrappers and on displays in their outlets. In fact, in February 2007, Malaysia Government has also considered imposing a sin tax on fast food, similarly with what it does for alcoholic drink and cigarettes.  I am not sure whether it is will disallow fast food company operating 24 hours.

On one hand, this is a bold move from Government to discourage children from eating fast food. On one hand, it may not be fair to constantly blaming fast food companies alone for causing the issue.

Why do I say so?

We should bear the responsibility too. City folks do not like spending 2 hours in kitchen cooking dinner. People want it easy. People want it tasty. People demand it fast. Some people even complain the drive through is too slow. So, consumers are the ones who want fast food. Kids will not eat fast food if the parents do not agree so.

No one put knives on our throats forcing us to eat fast food. Who willingly lifts the burger or French fries to his mouth, manually chews, and swallows?

Things not right with us is NOT necessarily somebody else’s fault. So, it is our responsibility to eat what we want. Furthermore, exercise is equally important in weight control.

We can’t keep on blaming others. This time, McDonald, KFC and Pizza Hut are to be blamed. Are we going to take on Starbucks next? Probably.

We are what we eat. We also decide what we eat.



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8 responses so far ↓
  • khengsiong // Jun 30, 2010 at 4:57 PM

    Roti canai and nasi lemak aren’t exactly healthy. It’s just that Americans never bother to study Malaysian food.

  • Tami // Jun 30, 2010 at 5:17 PM

    The problem isn’t the fast food companies, the problem is the food education.

    Some people in this country (England) consider crisps as one of your 5 a day because they have potatoes in them. Also Jaffa Cakes (a cake/biscuit thing with orange jelly filler) because it has ‘natural orange’ in it. Ignorance can allow people to fool themselves into believing this tripe.

    There has been an add campaign in the UK ‘food for life’ which involves children growing and eating their own produce. Which has more nutrients than anything in a supermarket. see
    Thats better than just plain taxation on food. Other solutions involve make healthy food cheaper. Make people realise that a slightly disfigured carrot is still good and tasty. Get people involved in growing their own food. I know someone who doesn’t eat any kind of fruit or vegetable because they don’t like it (an adult of 30 odd!!!) they don’t like Strawberries!?!?! Thats a psychological issue because it hasn’t got anything to do with the taste of strawberries! Who doesn’t like strawberries? Or any other fruit or veg for that matter.

    rant over.

  • Callie Durbrow // Jul 1, 2010 at 2:13 AM

    I agree that the responsibility should also be on us, the consumers. We choose to eat at these places time and time again. Though my problem lies when there is a surplus of fast food establishments in the inner city.
    I also think that food education is the problem as well. Many of us aren’t well educated in nutrition and what foods are good and bad for us besides the basics. We have to educate ourselves and want to change.

  • jarkody // Jul 4, 2010 at 10:40 PM

    I don’t blame the fast food companies completely because they can’t make anybody buy their food. People have to take responsibility for their own bodies and they have to take care of themselves. It’s common knowledge that people need exercise, but not exercising plus eating tons of fast food is a bad combination. At the same time fast food companies should be more concerned with making their food healthier.

  • Ines Garcia // Jul 8, 2010 at 12:41 PM

    I couldn’t agree more. It’s starts with is first. We have to be able to be conscious, as well as educate ourselves about Fast Food!

  • ms.broccoli // Jul 9, 2010 at 5:01 PM

    Totally agree with this quote — We decide what we eat. We can always choose what to eat and not to eat. So we can’t keep blaming on the fast food companies.

  • Julia // Sep 13, 2010 at 10:59 AM

    I really believe that fast food restaurants are not to blame for the growing number of obese people in the world. That is the equivalent of saying that because stores offer cigarettes and alcohol, we have so many alcoholics and people addicted to cigarettes. Eating fast food is a choice that people make just as smoking and drinking are. There are so many alternatives to the bad fast food restaurants that are just as fast and taste just as good. For example, as quickly as one could go through the mcdonalds line, they could run into subway, or grab a pre-cooked chicken from the publix bakery. There are also healthier options on a fast food menu, if that is really truly the only place there is to go. On most menus there are salads, grilled choices, and fruits and yogurt. Therefore, I strongly believe that it is totally ones own choice and responsibility to keep up with what they eat and to maintain their body by putting healthy foods into it and regularly exercising.

  • veronica // Sep 30, 2010 at 11:53 PM

    I think that fast food is not the blame for obesity its the people themself. They choice to go out and eat at a fast food resaurnt then stay at home and make somthing more healthy. This also goes with the lack of exercising they choice to eat fating food and not exercise well thats not good on them. So people shouldnt blame fast food they should blame themself for not making the right choices.

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