Nutrition in the News: The new focus is on prevention

The health bill is gaining more traction in the nutrition-fitness world as more measures are being taken against obesity and more focus is being placed on prevention. According to an article in the NY Times, published in Sunday’s edition, the health reform bill is putting more eggs in the prevention basket, which is what needed to happen all along.

As I mentioned in a past NITN[Nutrition in the News], the health bill is taking a stronger stance on obesity by forcing all restaurant owners with 20 or more stores to post nutritional information in their venues, placing special importance on the fast food industry. By providing this knowledge to consumers, the hope is that this will work to prevent over-eating and eating fatty foods, which in turn, can help to prevent obesity related deaths and help to dwindle the obesity epidemic.

The bill also discusses how most insurance companies will have to cover all recommended screenings and preventative measures [such as cancer screenings], which will do wonders to help give people the necessary tools and the necessary time to fight off deadly diseases. Medicaid and Medicare are also going to have to start providing patients with free physicals and yearly wellness visits.

Not only that, but there are also grants and amendments being issued under the bill that will provide funding to communities for more bike paths and playgrounds.

Many companies and employers are focusing more on prevention as well by providing health perks to their employees, such as comped gym memberships, free race entries and having blood drives and flu shots on site. Not only does this help keep employee’s safe and healthy, it boosts morale and can get the employers some perks of their own, such as tax breaks.

One of the reasons I support this bill is how proactive it is in enforcing healthy habits among Americans. A focus of this bill, especially as it relates to nutrition, is on prevention, which is so much more important than most people realize. [And is alot easier to practice as well!] By providing calorie counts and fat totals, it is giving people the necessary ingredients to choose healthier options, which will work to prevent obesity and obesity related complications. Providing employees with incentives to work out and get flu shots helps to prevent disease spreading [which is all to common in a tight-knit office] and helps to instill healthy habits in employees. 

A hope I have for the bill is that it shows us how we all need to be a little bit more cautious in our own lives and work to prevent many of the diseases and complications that kill millions of a us a year.

Prevention can save our lives, so why not support something that reinforces that? 

To read the article I am referencing, visit

~ by therealnutritionist on April 6, 2010.

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