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$2.1 million to reduce obesity rates in Canberra

By Barcham 28 August 2013 48

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Community Groups aiming to reduce obesity in the ACT are being encouraged to apply for a Healthy Canberra Grant.

Katy Gallagher launched the $2.1 million 2014 program today.

Community groups with program and project ideas to reduce obesity in the ACT are being encouraged to apply for a Healthy Canberra Grant, following the launch of the $2.1 million 2014 program by Chief Minister and Minister for Health, Katy Gallagher today.

“We know that the incidence of people who are overweight and obese is increasing in our community and the ACT Government is actively working to roll-out programs that deal with this health problem,” the Chief Minister said.

“As well as the many policies and programs being progressed by the government many community groups and not-for-profit groups also have great ideas to reduce the rate of obesity but are lacking the funding to get them off the ground,” the Chief Minister said.

“Healthy Canberra Grants will provide groups including community groups, school communities, and not-forprofit organisations with these funds so that they can help to address this growing health problem in our society.”

There’s going to be an information session on Tuesday the 3rd of September from 4.00 until 5.30 at the Rheinberger Centre in Yarralumla.
Check out www.health.act.gov.au/hpgrants for more info.

[Photo by Alan Cleaver (CC BY 2.0)]

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48 Responses to
$2.1 million to reduce obesity rates in Canberra
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devils_advocate 11:10 am 29 Aug 13

dtc said :

Its not just the thermic effect. For example, carbs result in insulin production which results in the energy being stored as fat; whereas protein doesnt result in insulin production so reduced fat production (this is very simplistic and the effect differs between people – some people can carb out without gaining weight, but for others cutting the carbs may be all that they need).

Also differs within the same person based on age. In my teens and early twenties I could eat crap without any ill effects. Since hitting my 30’s I’ve had to put some thought into my diet.

dtc 10:35 am 29 Aug 13

bundah said :

Ben_Dover said :

dtc said :

If we could just get rid of the ‘calories in vs calories out’ belief, that would be a good start.

???????

Yep it’s apparently not that simple for not all calories are the same

http://www.antiagingworld.net/calories-weight-loss/

My version

Calories are just a measurment of energy. Everything can be measured by its calorific effects. As an extreme argument, no one expects that 10 calories of petrol will be treated by your body in the same way as 10 calories of protein.

So why should people think that 10 calories of protein will be dealt with by your body in the same way as 10 calories of carbs or 10 calories of fat? Their only similarity is that they are digestible by the body, but otherwise do not think they are ‘the same’. As mentioned, a calorie is only a unit of measurement; it doesnt mean that things with the same calorie measurment are the same thing.

Its not just the thermic effect. For example, carbs result in insulin production which results in the energy being stored as fat; whereas protein doesnt result in insulin production so reduced fat production (this is very simplistic and the effect differs between people – some people can carb out without gaining weight, but for others cutting the carbs may be all that they need).

Anyway, have a read through people like Tom Naughton or Gary Taubes etc. They are a bit OTT in my view (‘how do you know if someone is on the paleo diet’ ‘they will tell you’) but a lot of their claims are backed up by actual science rather than general belief.

devils_advocate 10:06 am 29 Aug 13

thebrownstreak69 said :

magiccar9 said :

devils_advocate said :

My initiative is to amend the discrimination act so that it is no longer illegal for people or organisations to discriminate against the obese. So basically business as usual but with more complete information.

No direct costs to society and builds financial incentives into the system.

Very nice idea. When an obese person realises they can’t get a job because they’re too fat, perhaps that will be a better incentive. Same goes for getting into a restaurant, on a bus/train, etc. This change would allow the interviewer (or whoever) to tell them so.
I think we need less ‘hand holding’ for obese people. In most cases they got themselves into this situation, so they need to step up and take some responsibility to get out.
I also don’t see how the Government’s money is going to do anything about the issue, they can fund all the incentives under the sun, but its not going to get the fatties through the door to utilise them.

I wonder how this would read if we changed the words ‘obese person’ to ‘drug addict’.

Not very much. AFAIK it’s currently not legal to discriminate against someone purely on the basis of an addiction (drug affected maybe different, addiction discrimination probably a no-no). But as with obesity, people are probably reluctant to hire addicts of any kind and the only effect of the law will be to force them to find some other plausible reason for them not getting the job.

devils_advocate 10:04 am 29 Aug 13

Ben_Dover said :

dtc said :

If we could just get rid of the ‘calories in vs calories out’ belief, that would be a good start.

???????

As noted below, not all calories are the same. Cliffs version: some calories require a lot of effort on behalf of the body to process. For example it is much harder for the body to process, say, a steak or some vegetables compared with a sugary soft drink or chocolate. Healthy foods create a ‘thermic effect’.

Sugar is the devil. It takes zero effort to digest, and leads to accumulation of visceral fat, which is the bad one that everyone seems to ignore. Probably also why sugary junk gives you immediate gratification then you have a sugar crash and either feel like crap or need more. By contrast a nice steak with some veg and maybe a little bit of complex carbs if not too late in the day and you’re ready for anything.

bundah 9:03 am 29 Aug 13

Ben_Dover said :

dtc said :

If we could just get rid of the ‘calories in vs calories out’ belief, that would be a good start.

???????

Yep it’s apparently not that simple for not all calories are the same

http://www.antiagingworld.net/calories-weight-loss/

thebrownstreak69 8:39 am 29 Aug 13

magiccar9 said :

devils_advocate said :

My initiative is to amend the discrimination act so that it is no longer illegal for people or organisations to discriminate against the obese. So basically business as usual but with more complete information.

No direct costs to society and builds financial incentives into the system.

Very nice idea. When an obese person realises they can’t get a job because they’re too fat, perhaps that will be a better incentive. Same goes for getting into a restaurant, on a bus/train, etc. This change would allow the interviewer (or whoever) to tell them so.
I think we need less ‘hand holding’ for obese people. In most cases they got themselves into this situation, so they need to step up and take some responsibility to get out.
I also don’t see how the Government’s money is going to do anything about the issue, they can fund all the incentives under the sun, but its not going to get the fatties through the door to utilise them.

I wonder how this would read if we changed the words ‘obese person’ to ‘drug addict’.

Ben_Dover 7:40 am 29 Aug 13

dtc said :

If we could just get rid of the ‘calories in vs calories out’ belief, that would be a good start.

???????

magiccar9 6:17 am 29 Aug 13

devils_advocate said :

My initiative is to amend the discrimination act so that it is no longer illegal for people or organisations to discriminate against the obese. So basically business as usual but with more complete information.

No direct costs to society and builds financial incentives into the system.

Very nice idea. When an obese person realises they can’t get a job because they’re too fat, perhaps that will be a better incentive. Same goes for getting into a restaurant, on a bus/train, etc. This change would allow the interviewer (or whoever) to tell them so.
I think we need less ‘hand holding’ for obese people. In most cases they got themselves into this situation, so they need to step up and take some responsibility to get out.
I also don’t see how the Government’s money is going to do anything about the issue, they can fund all the incentives under the sun, but its not going to get the fatties through the door to utilise them.

Postalgeek 10:40 pm 28 Aug 13

I’d like to see some of the money invested in mouth gags for over-compensating ex-fatties who preach on and on about their belated discovery of self-discipline.

Thumper 9:19 pm 28 Aug 13

LSWCHP said :

I’m tall with low bady fat and high muscle mass, 60 bpm resting heartrate, BP is generally around 115/65, great cholesterol etc etc. In short, I’m in tremendous shape for an old bastard.

If the gummint gives me only half (yes, you read that right) of that $2.1 Million, I will tell them my secret.

I’m short, but in pretty good nick. Okay, I drink about ten times the recommended daily intake but I’m still in good nick. I’ll sell my secret as well…

milkman 9:08 pm 28 Aug 13

LSWCHP said :

I’m tall with low bady fat and high muscle mass, 60 bpm resting heartrate, BP is generally around 115/65, great cholesterol etc etc. In short, I’m in tremendous shape for an old bastard.

If the gummint gives me only half (yes, you read that right) of that $2.1 Million, I will tell them my secret.

Pole dancing.

Ha – secret’s out, you get nothing!

Doc Dogg 8:52 pm 28 Aug 13

neanderthalsis said :

as a wee lad in primary school in the early 80’s we did what was termed a “health hustle” every morning.

In the late 80s we had the “long run” where we would run a lap around the school after lunch and were timed. Gold stars were given to those kids who improved their lap times. We also had the health hustle (to such classics as Nutbush City Limits, Bad Bad Leeroy Brown and Do the Bartman), Blocko, T-ball, Red Rover and a sports shed full of equipment you could go and grab to have a game.

We also had a few teachers who would make you run laps if you were acting up. Imagine the uproar if that happened in school today.

LSWCHP 7:07 pm 28 Aug 13

I’m tall with low bady fat and high muscle mass, 60 bpm resting heartrate, BP is generally around 115/65, great cholesterol etc etc. In short, I’m in tremendous shape for an old bastard.

If the gummint gives me only half (yes, you read that right) of that $2.1 Million, I will tell them my secret.

Thumper 5:42 pm 28 Aug 13

Give me the money and I’ll go around poking fat kids with a stick for a year.

Seriously, all this will achieve will be, eat less, exercise more, something everyone knows.

dtc 5:30 pm 28 Aug 13

neanderthalsis said :

And think your study on the failings of the food pyramid happened a good many years ago: http://bit.ly/15vF5rP

Yeah, thanks for that. You did notice, however, that nonetheless the governments of most of the western world have just released another ‘recommended food pyramid’ (except as a plate) that is more or less the same as the old one? So maybe they should take money away from the public health people pushing that barrow and give it to the anti obesity people?

If we could just get rid of the ‘calories in vs calories out’ belief, that would be a good start.

Kids at my son’s school have been given a ‘movement band’ that apparently measures how far they move each day (like a pedometer but measures all movement). Everyone is getting 10km plus per day; but its an inner north school, so obviously that is expected….

devils_advocate 4:49 pm 28 Aug 13

My initiative is to amend the discrimination act so that it is no longer illegal for people or organisations to discriminate against the obese. So basically business as usual but with more complete information.

No direct costs to society and builds financial incentives into the system.

rosscoact 4:43 pm 28 Aug 13

Well I for one will be putting forward a proposal for this wonderful initiative

neanderthalsis 4:38 pm 28 Aug 13

dtc said :

neanderthalsis said :

$2.1 million for anti-obesity work against a population of some 380 000 equates to one cheese burger meal per head of population.

Here’s an idea, put the coin into upgrading walking paths around our lakes or putting new community gym equipment into local parks.

Fix the paving along Emu Bank so that runners don’t risk broken ankles on cracked paving that moves underfoot. Put better lighting on walking tracks and bike paths to encourage people to use them after dark. Legislate 30 minutes of compulsory exercise into all schools and workplaces daily. Buy every 10 year old in the territory a new bike.

Just don’t give it to special interest groups who will form a committee that examines how to get Canberrans to drive less and cycle more.

So, basically, improve the facilities for people who already use the facilities, and give kids a bike? Oh, and add another burden to the teachers (because its the kids that are generally obese rather than the 50 years olds?)

How about ‘do a study on the food pyramid and why its wrong for a lot of people’

Maybe I should be less subtle when I transition from sensible options into sarcastic remarks. But on the 30 mins of exercise issue, as a wee lad in primary school in the early 80’s we did what was termed a “health hustle” every morning. We were, rather comically , led by a nun in full habbit and wimple as we jumped, ran and carried on. It didn’t seem to overburden the teachers or detract from other learning back then. In fact I do believe that it drained energy from some of the more boisterous lads (myself included) so that we were less of a disruptive element in class. Developing a good knowledge of nutrition and fitness as well as having good examples set at home and school will set you up for a healthier life later on (unless you choose to ignore that learning, in which case, enjoy your diabetes).

Additionally, improved recreational facilities will increase the number of people accessing them.

And think your study on the failings of the food pyramid happened a good many years ago: http://bit.ly/15vF5rP

dustytrail 4:19 pm 28 Aug 13

Why is the ACT Government wasting OUR money on talkfests about people who should eat less and exercise more? I am sure that the $2.1m could be spent on something that affects ALL Canberrans, not just the obese ones.

Oh, the feet in the picture are not those of an obese person but he /she needs to see a podiatrist, those little piggies look awfully painful.

muscledude_oz 4:12 pm 28 Aug 13

I have just started the muscledude_oz Community Initiative on Fitness and Obesity Reduction. At the moment we have only one member who belongs to three gyms and works out and swims laps seven days a week. Please send our grant to muscledude_oz c/- RiotACT.

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