Science & Tech

Americans don’t see obesity as serious health problem

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Kennedy School study reveals Americans’ attitudes on issue

Using unique survey data that they collected, researchers Taeku Lee and J. Eric Oliver presented the first examination of public attitudes towards obesity and obesity policy. They found that, contrary to the views of health experts, most Americans are not seriously concerned with obesity, express relatively low support for obesity-targeted policies, and still view obesity as resulting from individual failure rather than environmental or genetic sources. Lee is an assistant professor of public policy at Harvard’s John F. Kennedy School of Government and Oliver is an assistant professor of politics and public affairs at the Woodrow Wilson School, Princeton University.