Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations

Can nudging help fight the obesity epidemic? UK experts debate

Date:
April 15, 2011
Source:
BMJ-British Medical Journal
Summary:
With obesity rates soaring, the UK government has been promoting nudge -- a strategy that does not tell people how to live but encourages them to make healthy choices in respect of diet and exercise. Experts debate whether nudge is an effective way to tackle obesity.

With obesity rates soaring, the government has been promoting nudge -- a strategy that does not tell people how to live but encourages them to make healthy choices in respect of diet and exercise.

Related Articles


Experts writing in the British Medical Journal debate whether nudge is an effective way to tackle obesity.

Professor Tim Lang and Dr Geof Rayner, both from the Centre for Food Policy at City University in London, say that nudge is not new and that it is "a smokescreen for, at best, inaction and, at worst, publicly endorsed marketing."

They argue that the nudging strategy portrays governments in a soft light and allows them to shy away from taking tough action that can be unpopular -- for example introducing more regulation, higher taxes and legislation that restricts or bans unhealthy habits.

The responsibility deals with industry that were formalised in the 2010 public health white paper add further concern to the use of nudging, they say.

Finally, they also worry that nudge "becomes collusion between the state and corporations to hoodwink consumers."

But Dr Adam Oliver from the London School of Economics and Political Science in London, argues that there is a lot of ignorance about what nudge actually means. He says that nudge should not be seen as a replacement for stricter forms of food regulation but rather as "an additional tool to complement regulation by moving society incrementally in a direction that might benefit all of us."

Oliver says that, while nudging is at an initial development stage and that little evaluation has taken place, "the beauty in the approach in that almost everyone can think up and pilot financially costless initiatives in their households or workplaces."

He concludes that, "in tackling obesity, the nudge approach will be no substitute for regulation of the food and drinks industry, but it may nonetheless serve the social good."


Story Source:

The above story is based on materials provided by BMJ-British Medical Journal. Note: Materials may be edited for content and length.


Journal References:

  1. A. Oliver. Is nudge an effective public health strategy to tackle obesity? Yes. BMJ, 2011; 342 (apr13 5): d2168 DOI: 10.1136/bmj.d2168
  2. G. Rayner, T. Lang. Is nudge an effective public health strategy to tackle obesity? No. BMJ, 2011; 342 (apr13 5): d2177 DOI: 10.1136/bmj.d2177

Cite This Page:

BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Can nudging help fight the obesity epidemic? UK experts debate." ScienceDaily. ScienceDaily, 15 April 2011. <www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110415083219.htm>.
BMJ-British Medical Journal. (2011, April 15). Can nudging help fight the obesity epidemic? UK experts debate. ScienceDaily. Retrieved November 27, 2014 from www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110415083219.htm
BMJ-British Medical Journal. "Can nudging help fight the obesity epidemic? UK experts debate." ScienceDaily. www.sciencedaily.com/releases/2011/04/110415083219.htm (accessed November 27, 2014).

Share This


More From ScienceDaily



More Health & Medicine News

Thursday, November 27, 2014

Featured Research

from universities, journals, and other organizations


Featured Videos

from AP, Reuters, AFP, and other news services

Experimental Ebola Vaccine Shows Promise In Human Trial

Experimental Ebola Vaccine Shows Promise In Human Trial

Newsy (Nov. 27, 2014) — A recent test of a prototype Ebola vaccine generated an immune response to the disease in subjects. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Pet Dogs to Be Used in Anti-Ageing Trial

Reuters - Innovations Video Online (Nov. 26, 2014) — Researchers in the United States are preparing to discover whether a drug commonly used in human organ transplants can extend the lifespan and health quality of pet dogs. Video provided by Reuters
Powered by NewsLook.com
Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Today's Prostheses Are More Capable Than Ever

Newsy (Nov. 26, 2014) — Advances in prosthetics are making replacement body parts stronger and more lifelike than they’ve ever been. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com
From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

From Popcorn To Vending Snacks: FDA Ups Calorie Count Rules

Newsy (Nov. 25, 2014) — The US FDA is announcing new calorie rules on Tuesday that will require everywhere from theaters to vending machines to include calorie counts. Video provided by Newsy
Powered by NewsLook.com

Search ScienceDaily

Number of stories in archives: 140,361

Find with keyword(s):
 
Enter a keyword or phrase to search ScienceDaily for related topics and research stories.

Save/Print:
Share:  

Breaking News:

Strange & Offbeat Stories

 

Health & Medicine

Mind & Brain

Living & Well

In Other News

... from NewsDaily.com

Science News

Health News

Environment News

Technology News



Save/Print:
Share:  

Free Subscriptions


Get the latest science news with ScienceDaily's free email newsletters, updated daily and weekly. Or view hourly updated newsfeeds in your RSS reader:

Get Social & Mobile


Keep up to date with the latest news from ScienceDaily via social networks and mobile apps:

Have Feedback?


Tell us what you think of ScienceDaily -- we welcome both positive and negative comments. Have any problems using the site? Questions?
Mobile iPhone Android Web
Follow Facebook Twitter Google+
Subscribe RSS Feeds Email Newsletters
Latest Headlines Health & Medicine Mind & Brain Space & Time Matter & Energy Computers & Math Plants & Animals Earth & Climate Fossils & Ruins