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Critically Speaking

Aug 28, 2019

Welcome to the second part of our interview with Dr. Hugh Waters, Director of Health Economics Research at the Milken Institute.  A few weeks ago, Dr. Waters presented us with the astounding economic costs of the rise of obesity in the United States, both from health expenditures and lost work and wages.  1.7 trillion (with a T) dollars in one year. These costs are not born only by the obese individual but are distributed across society in ways that affect us all.  So, we all need to think about ways to reverse this trend and today Dr. Waters will discuss some ideas about how. 


Key Takeaways:  

  • Increasing taxes on sugary and processed foods, like with cigarettes, does decrease the consumption of these unhealthy foods. Subsidizing healthy foods also increases the consumption of healthy foods. 
  • As a society, we need to get involved at all levels, federal, state, local governments, employers, communities, families – everyone plays a role in decreasing the obesity and overweight levels. 
  • The pocketbook is the most effective way to get people’s attention. 


"The key is not to make people feel badly about their bodies, but to let them know that they have other options and there are healthy alternatives and ways to lead full, healthy lives." —  Dr. Hugh Waters 


Connect with Dr. Hugh Waters:   

Milken Institute: Hugh Waters    

Milken Institute Report: 

Economic impact of excess weight now exceeds $1.7 trillion, new Milken Institute report reveals.  


Connect with Therese:  


Twitter: @CritiSpeak  




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