Should government determine serving sizes?

People in Elkhart County talk about food and obesity issues in America.
Posted on March 29, 2013 at 1:00 a.m. | Updated on March 29, 2013 at 4:19 p.m.

Correspondent Mark Shephard visited Coppes Commons in Nappanee this week and asked, “In light of New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg’s recent attempt to regulate soft drink sizes in order to help battle obesity, how much influence should government have in determining serving sizes?”

April Ba, nurse, Goshen:

“I don’t think they should have any. It’s a personal thing. You can’t really control what people are going to eat. If you make it a smaller size, they’ll just get another one.” Follow-up question: Do you feel that there is enough information on products and foods to let you know what you’re consuming? “I think so. People that are eating the stuff they shouldn’t know that it’s not the best thing for them, but they still make those decisions.”

Cassy Griffin, stay-at-home mom, Nappanee:

“That’s up to parents and individuals. They’re their own person, so they know what they’re doing.” Follow-up question: Do you feel that there is enough information on products and foods to let you know what you’re buying? “Yes, we pay attention to labels and ingredients. How do you make your decisions when you go to a movie or a mom and pop shop, and you don’t see the information? Those are splurges, so you’re kind of taking it upon yourself (to realize) this is going to be my day, and I’m going to eat what I want, and not pay attention. That’s my splurge, I guess. When I go to a movie theater I know I’m going to eat a snack that I wouldn’t eat daily.”

Jerry Meek, retired electrician, Nappanee:

“None. I don’t think they should be at all. We have lost so many rights that I fought for already. We can’t smoke if we choose to. No, I don’t think they don’t need to be involved. And what about these gay marriages? They shouldn’t be in on that either. I’m sorry, I just don’t think the government needs to step into that. Let’s get the government to do what they’re supposed to be doing, which they’re not, in my opinion. Let’s save this country before it goes down. Let’s concentrate and work together. They are not working together.” Follow-up question: Do you feel like you get enough information on food products that you are purchasing, or do you feel like you want to see more, such as when you go to a movie? “There should be some kind of information so we know exactly what we are consuming. We need to live healthy, and that’s the trouble with America, we’re not living healthy.”

Randy Lowery, meat clerk, Nappanee:

“Zero.” Follow-up question: What do you think of the obesity problem in America? “Computers — that’s one of the main problems. Guidance by the parents — that’s another problem. We need to be more active as a nation. Get the kids off of their rear ends — out from in front of the computer, in front of the television — and make them go out.

Jeremie Studebaker, server, Westminster, Colo.:

“I guess I don’t think that the government should be regulating serving sizes. If somebody wants to kill themselves drinking sodas and get diabetes, that’s their deal.” Follow-up question: Do you feel like food and beverage products give you enough information overall? “No. I think a lot of people are ignorant to what is in food products, and maybe if they were given enough information, maybe they would not drink soda or eat fast food.”

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