I think the “SUPER SIZE ME” movie has a huge impact on public health relating to the obesity epidemic. “SUPER SIZE ME” shows a real subject who eats MacDonald's for 30 days, becomes overweight and suffers bad health effects. A lot of health problems are caused by eating MacDonald's such as massive headaches, depression and exhaustion, mood swings, heartburn, liver damage, high cholesterol, high blood pressure, and reduced libido. It also shows that there is a dose-relationship between eating Mac Donald and health consequences. Fast food is revealed to be addictive. The actor has massive cravings for Mac Donald. People should not want to try it if they don’t want to become dependent on it. “SUPER SIZE ME” provides convincing information about the effect of eating Mac Donald on health on a real person.
In addition, the “SUPER SIZE ME” presents the perception of health experts about the effects of eating Mac Donald. The interviews with 100 nutritionists show that 95% of them agree that Mac Donald contributes to obesity. It uses images of stars that change soft drink into lettuce, and Mac Donald into orange. (????) It may have a good impression on the population about the value of information and motivation to change their behaviors. School food is also mentioned here. The author shows two schools, one has healthy food and another one has unhealthy food. They point out that healthy food costs the same amount of money as unhealthy food. The schools would have no reasons not to change their school food policy when the cost of healthy food is similar to that of unhealthy food. This campaign also gets involvement of parents who may influence on changing food policy in schools. One school in Illinois has a recreation center funded by fund raising and parents’ contribution. This may be a lesson for other schools to apply.
Although the movie has a good advocacy for obesity prevention, It emphasizes much on Mac Donald but neglects to mention other reasons for obesity such as other fast food, and especially lack of physical activity. It may make people misunderstand that only Mac Donald causes obesity, if they don’t eat Mac Donald they will be fine, and it will be fine to eat small size.
Furthermore, they report that Mac Donald accounts for 40% of fast food in the US but they don’t provide information about it in other countries with low prevalence of obesity. People in other countries may eat Mac Donald as much as American do but the prevalence of obesity is not as high as it is in the US. For example, in the Netherlands people eat Mac Donald everywhere, many of them eat Mac Donald for breaskfast. They go to the train station and get Mac Donald then eat on the train. Mac Donald contributes to obesity but its role is not clearly compared to other reasons.
“SUPER SIZE ME” brings out the role of physical activity with obesity but not much. It takes New York as a good example but not say really little about it. Only walking is implied as physical activity.
Experimenting on human beings is an ethical issue. The impact of the movie is really large (efficiency) but its cost-effectiveness should be considered. Finally, the movie doesn’t come up with concrete recommendations which population can follow in term of diet and physical activity, so the impact on obesity epidemic is partly limited.
- Provide information about causes of obesity in the US and in some other countries as references.
- Provide more information on kinds of foods and amount of eaten foods causing obesity
- Provide information about alternative foods
- Provide a variety of physical activities which are appropriate to target groups.
- Give out regulations/law about components of Mac Donald
Tam, I haver had a quick look through- please change it always to MacDonald's and done say 'the' with the film title.
- For Teachers