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Couch potato lifestyle is worse for your health than smoking
September 4, 2002 6:38 PM   Subscribe

Couch potato lifestyle is worse for your health than smoking Poor diet and lack of exercise cause more illness than smoking, new figures show. The lifestyle of couch potatoes has overtaken smoking as the major cause of ill-health in EU countries for the first time, the World Health Organisation says. Great, now reading Metafilter is bad for me.
posted by Coop (12 comments total)

 
Yow! Smoking, diet, AND exercise all in the same thread.

By the way, is everybody else as confused as I am by all the nutritional advice? The latest word is that the switch to a low fat diet has grossly increased the intake of carbohydrates leading to a corresponding increase in adult-onset diabetes. I realize that 1) calories count and 2) eat plenty of fruits and vegetables, but after that it seems like there is so much conflicting information.
posted by Secret Life of Gravy at 7:00 PM on September 4, 2002


I used to smoke and was a couch potato, then I quit smoking. So am I now better off than I was, worse, or what?
posted by mr_crash_davis at 7:01 PM on September 4, 2002


and let's not forget this EUROPE we're talking about. Walk to the train, eat at 9pm, smoke 6 packs a day and make love all night long, Europe. What will WHO find when they brave the wilds of Champagne-Urbana?
posted by pejamo at 7:02 PM on September 4, 2002


Which is why we need to slap couch manufacturers with a massive class-action lawsuit.
posted by risenc at 7:11 PM on September 4, 2002


Yeah, like I'm going to miss a night of The Osbournes for that.
posted by mr_crash_davis at 8:38 PM on September 4, 2002


Yeah, like I'm going to miss a night of The Osbournes for that.

Well, if you're watching The Osbournes, then you have worse problems then cancer anyway.

I loved this quote:

"Telling people to eat more fruit and vegetables and to take exercise did not work if there were no policies to help people change, she said."

WTF? People need a *policy* in order to eat veggies or exercise? Oh, wait, later it says,

"It is possible to produce enough fruit and vegetables for all of Europe to follow the recommendations by spreading the fresh food across the countries, but current policies do not support this."

So, people can't just go to the store and ask for fresh fruit, with farmers then increasing supply, supplies have to be mandated by some law?

Wow.
posted by Ayn Marx at 10:27 PM on September 4, 2002


risens: Which is why we need to slap couch manufacturers with a massive class-action lawsuit.

Yeah... let's also sue TV manufacturers while we're at it :)!
posted by freakystyley at 5:56 AM on September 5, 2002


It's really quite simple. Don't smoke, or make smoking rare. Eat your veggies and cook your own food. Avoid TV dinners, other insta-foods, and junk food. Exercise regularly. If you're a real keener, you can even tweak your body through exercise. Simply put, make an effort to do what you were taught in grade school: eat and exercise properly. There no such thing as insta-health, a myth perpetuated by the pharmaceutical industry. Look at where it got Elvis. Turned him into a pill-popping cheese burger eating kung fu fighting fatass with greasy sideburns.
posted by freakystyley at 6:06 AM on September 5, 2002


By the way, is everybody else as confused as I am by all the nutritional advice?

The Harvard School of Public Health tries to address this confusion. It's chock full of good information on a variety of nutrition subjects. My favorite is the revised food pyramid we Americans grew up with.
posted by moonbiter at 6:52 AM on September 5, 2002


Great, now reading Metafilter is bad for me.

Now there's your class action suit. ;)

Seriously though. Is a desk potato the same as a couch potato?
posted by Ufez Jones at 7:10 AM on September 5, 2002


yeah but we also get carpal tunnel syndrom
posted by Coop at 8:24 AM on September 5, 2002


It reminds me I once read that the introduction of e-mail and IM at the workplace (thus keeping workers on their desks) meant that the average worker would gain a couple of kilos over the next 5 years.
posted by edsousa at 12:25 PM on September 5, 2002


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