Fitness trainer and lifestyle guru Jillian Michaels is urging the government to cut subsidies for “big loser” foods.
In letters written to House Speaker John Boehner and Senate Majority Leader Harry Reid, she spoke in favor of a five-step program that would eliminate programs that support the consumption of processed meat, cheese, candy, sugar and processed/junk food.
The program is laid out by the Physician’s Committee for Responsible Medicine (PCRM), and suggests that the government: end direct agribusiness payments, privatize crop insurance, force factory farms to clean up their own waste, reform food stamps and reform commodity food purchases. According to the PCRM, these five changes could save taxpayers $383 billion over a 10-year period, as well as reduce obesity weights and future health care costs.
Michaels wrote in her letters, “Cutting subsidies for unhealthful foods would trim the nation’s budget—and Americans’ waistlines. Some of our government’s current policies and programs actually promote obesity and other diseases by supporting the production and consumption of the very foods that contribute to… health problems.”
PCRM President Dr. Neal Barnard is particularly interested in reforming the Supplemental Nutrition Assistance Program (SNAP), aka food stamps, to offer incentives for healthy food purchases. “SNAP is under threat when more Americans than ever need help. These reforms save SNAP and will serve more people for less money with healthier food.”
PCRM’s plan would also work toward providing school children with healthier food options and fighting childhood obesity.