Counting Down To End Obesity? - KAUZ-TV: Newschannel 6 Now | Wichita Falls, TX

Counting Down To End Obesity?

Food and beverage companies cut calories to help fight obesity. The Robert Johnson Foundation said on Thursday over 40 companies managed to cut 6.4 trillion calories from its products in the past five years.

Those companies formed a non-profit organization in 2009. It’s goal, to reduce obesity levels by 2015.  

Jessica Morath, a Nutrition Service Manager at the Wichita Falls Area Food Bank, said that it’s going to take more than companies cutting calories in products to fight this deadly disease.

"I think it’s a great way to start reducing the obesity, but there's many other factors that play into what actually causes obesity,” said Morath.

Morath said she wonders how much of an impact cutting calories is having on Americans’ waistline.

"For example, one of their goals was to reduce calories and that included the hundred calorie packs,” said Morath. “So it’s a way of changing the food packaging, but or we eating one, one hundred calorie pack or two hundred calorie packs.”

A lot of the obesity problem, Morath blames on the lack of people being educated on food nutrition. An issue she said the Wichita Falls Area Food Bank is striving to address.

"What we’re trying to do here at the food bank is to provide that population with no access to that and try to clear up some of those misconceptions about food and what they're eating," said Morath.

The people most affected by obesity live in low income populations and have less access to healthy foods.

Ashley Benavides, a Midwestern State University said she does not watch her calories. She said her being a college student makes it extremely difficult.

“I know it’s an issue I should probably pay attention to but I’m a college kid, and I eat what I can,” said Benavides.

 Benavides said cost and convenience plays a major factor in choosing what food she eats.

“A good salad cost you $8 to eat something super- healthy, but I can just go to McDonald’s and buy a dollar cheeseburger,” said Benavides.

However, other Texomans Newschannel 6 talked to said, fighting obesity is also a personal choice.

“I think majority of people need to just take charge themselves,” said Winky Berkewowski, a Texoma resident.

“In the end, it’s a personal decision,” said Tony McCurdy. “You have to want to be healthy.”

Jimmie Johnson, Newschannel 6 
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