It is clear that one of the greatest challenges to healthcare is obesity. Even if you’re not fat or overweight, Americans are getting fatter by the minute. Don’t believe me. Go to any mall, sit down and watch. It shouldn’t take long before the enormity of the problem begins to sink in.

From USA Today:

“Obesity is going to be a leading driver in rising health-care costs,” says Kenneth Thorpe, chairman of the department of health policy and management at Emory University in Atlanta. Thorpe did this special analysis on obesity for America’s Health Rankings, the 20th annual assessment of the nation’s health on a state-by-state basis.

“There is a tsunami of chronic preventable disease about to be unleashed into our medical-care system which is increasingly unaffordable,” says Reed Tuckson of United Health Foundation, sponsor of the report with the American Public Health Association and Partnership for Prevention.

One of the things that we have to do is simply eat better. I understand that’s easier said than done. It is much easier to grab a hamburger than it is to fix a healthy meal. Yet, we have to figure out a way to make it easier and more efficient to eat healthy. Harvard has come up with a guide called the healthy plate – this is a start.

Did you see that Denmark just instituted a fat tax? This is what we need. We need to encourage Americans to eat healthy. In the long run it is best for all of us. (I’m waiting for the usual objections from conservatives – liberals always want to tax x, y or z. This isn’t true. If they have a better idea, I’m all ears.)

Denmark has introduced what is believed to be the world’s first fat tax – a surcharge on foods that are high in saturated fat.

Butter, milk, cheese, pizza, meat, oil and processed food are now subject to the tax if they contain more than 2.3% saturated fat.

Some consumers began hoarding to beat the price rise, while some producers call the tax a bureaucratic nightmare.