David Bourget (Western Ontario)
David Chalmers (ANU, NYU)
Rafael De Clercq
Jack Alan Reynolds
Learn more about PhilPapers
Public Health Ethics 5 (3):222-228 (2012)
In this response to Jonny Anomaly’s ‘Is Obesity a Public Health Problem?’ I argue, contra the author that public health actually increases individuals’ abilities to choose actions that further their health goals, specifically in the case of obesity. The intractability of obesity as an individual medical problem combined with the health benefits of modest (5–10 per cent of body weight) weight loss suggest that public health measures helping people make small changes in eating habits improve population health. I argue that such measures are available to public health via behavioral economic research and policy proposals from libertarian paternalists. I respond to author’s claim that obesity does not constitute a public health problem because: (i) it is not an epidemic and (ii) obesity reduction is not a public good. I argue that epidemic status is not required for classification as a public health problem, but that obesity does have the status of an epidemic. I also point out flaws in author’s reasoning about obesity, public health and social costs. I conclude by suggesting that public health, in partnership with stakeholders and other areas of government, is poised to help create conditions for modest weight loss and increased population health overall
|Keywords||No keywords specified (fix it)|
|Categories||categorize this paper)|
Setup an account with your affiliations in order to access resources via your University's proxy server
Configure custom proxy (use this if your affiliation does not provide a proxy)
|Through your library|
References found in this work BETA
J. -F. Menard (2010). A 'Nudge' for Public Health Ethics: Libertarian Paternalism as a Framework for Ethical Analysis of Public Health Interventions? Public Health Ethics 3 (3):229-238.
Citations of this work BETA
No citations found.
Similar books and articles
Jonny Anomaly (2012). Is Obesity a Public Health Problem? Public Health Ethics 5 (3):216-221.
R. A. Skipper (2012). Obesity: Towards a System of Libertarian Paternalistic Public Health Interventions. Public Health Ethics 5 (2):181-191.
Ross Upshur (2013). What Does Public Health Ethics Tell (Or Not Tell) Us About Intervening in Non-Communicable Diseases? Journal of Bioethical Inquiry 10 (1):19-28.
Lenny R. Vartanian & Joshua M. Smyth (2013). Primum Non Nocere: Obesity Stigma and Public Health. [REVIEW] Journal of Bioethical Inquiry 10 (1):49-57.
Gordon R. Mitchell & Kathleen M. McTigue (2007). The Us Obesity “Epidemic”: Metaphor, Method, or Madness? Social Epistemology 21 (4):391 – 423.
Jonny Anomaly (2011). Public Health and Public Goods. Public Health Ethics 4 (3):251-259.
Norah Mulvaney-Day & Catherine A. Womack (2009). Obesity, Identity and Community: Leveraging Social Networks for Behavior Change in Public Health. Public Health Ethics 2 (3):250-260.
Alex Rajczi (2008). A Liberal Approach to the Obesity Epidemic. Public Affairs Quarterly 22 (3):269-288.
Federica Russo (2012). Public Health Policy, Evidence, and Causation: Lessons From the Studies on Obesity. Medicine, Health Care and Philosophy 15 (2):141-151.
Y. Tony Yang & Len M. Nichols (2011). Obesity and Health System Reform: Private Vs. Public Responsibility. Journal of Law, Medicine and Ethics 39 (3):380-386.
Jantina de Vries (2007). The Obesity Epidemic: Medical and Ethical Considerations. [REVIEW] Science and Engineering Ethics 13 (1):55-67.
Jantina Vries (2007). The Obesity Epidemic: Medical and Ethical Considerations. [REVIEW] Science and Engineering Ethics 13 (1):55-67.
A. Vilhelmsson, T. Svensson & A. Meeuwisse (2011). Mental Ill Health, Public Health and Medicalization. Public Health Ethics 4 (3):207-217.
Added to index2012-12-07
Total downloads6 ( #238,636 of 1,692,597 )
Recent downloads (6 months)1 ( #181,402 of 1,692,597 )
How can I increase my downloads?