The administration of Mayor Michael Bloomberg has taken obesity seriously. His most recent proposal is to ban the sale of any sugary soft drink in a larger serving than 16 ounces.
As most readers know, The Restaurant Dieter spends a lot of time in New York City. It is both a dieter’s dream and nightmare. On nearly every corner, temptation lurks — from the fancy cookie shop near our apartment to the store that specializes in cream puffs. (The latter is next to the store that specializes in gelato, of course.) But the city is also full of heath-conscious people, so a salad bar may well offer egg whites. And the mayor has championed several initiatives to combat obesity.
In spirit, the idea of a ban on huge sodas is fine. When I was a kid, soda pop came in two sizes: 12 ounces and 16 ounces. I don’t remember anybody feeling deprived.
But the idea that this will address the city’s obesity problem is silly. Those who want more, will simply buy two.
The real answer is higher taxes on soft drinks, which the mayor supported. But the measure died at the Statehouse in Albany.