Would You Pay a Fat Tax?

burgersThe obesity epidemic costs Americans an estimated 122.9 billion dollars a year. That’s a mighty impressive number for an incredibly preventable problem. With the health care field in crisis and discrepency over funds, I have to wonder: Would you pay extra money for your right to fattening and unhealthy food?

If an idividual makes the choice to purchase trans fat, cup cakes, and chips in lieu of fruits, veggies, and grains- why should their consequent health problems come out of tax dollars? It makes sense that one would suggest a ‘fat tax‘: a percentage of cost taxed onto items that are catagorized as ‘unhealthy’ and ultimately detrimental to health when consumed as a part of the daily diet. This is somewhat unrealistic, however, in the grand scheme of things it could be a nice new government piggie bank to throw towards the health cost of those without diet control. Would you add 1-2 percent to build health care and, hopefully, deter the people with weight and diet control problems from purchasing these foods?

I would- happily.

And I’m no angel- I love a dorito stint now and then followed by a taco bell run- but I also understand that that’s a bad choice on my end and and truthfully- I’d be willy to pay a little more. Especially since, for me, that’s not a bad habit that’s destroying my health and costing this country- its an occational treat. So the extra couple bucks I’d spend on a ‘fat tax‘ wouldn’t dent my budge.

But what would be categorized as ‘unhealthy’? It would likely take a team of experts to studyt the epidemiological trends and then weight the pros and cons of a food item. If the health risks out weigh the health benefits- tax it! And some are already taking action

Certainly some would argue that categorizing foods as ‘unhealthy’ would create very blurred lines and be unfair to those who take responsibility for their health, but, just as cigarettes we’re eventually taxed, maybe a saturated and trans ‘fat tax’ isn’t too far away.