Extracts from Telegraph report:
"Fat people will be offered cash incentives to lose weight and take regular exercise under a radical Government strategy announced yesterday to tackle the obesity epidemic.
Employers will be encouraged to set up competitions with money, vouchers and other rewards for people who give up junk food in favour of healthy eating and living. Those losing the most weight would earn the biggest prizes.
Ministers believe that by giving people incentives to do something about their weight now, it will help avoid larger costs associated with treating cancer, heart disease and diabetes caused by obesity. Similar schemes have worked well in America and British medical insurance companies already offer discounts for people who go to the gym regularly.
Experts say that most of the population will be obese by 2050 unless urgent action is taken and the associated rise in ill health would cost the NHS £50 billion a year.
The Government wants Britain to be the first major nation to reverse the rising tide of obesity and said it would focus on reducing within 12 years the proportion of children who are overweight back to the 2000 level of 26 per cent.
At present, 30 per cent of children are obese or overweight."
"The Government is investing £372 million over three years to implement the strategy and annual progress reports will be published.
Dr David Haslam, the clinical director of the National Obesity Forum, said the incentives scheme smacked of "desperation". There was little evidence that payments would work and it would be difficult to check whether people were regularly taking exercise.
A recent analysis of nine research studies which used financial incentives found there was no effect on weight after 12 months. Aberdeen University's Health Services Research Unit said eating more fruit and vegetables was more effective than paying for weight loss."
The trouble with offering cash incentives to lose weight is that it will encourage people to eat less food/diet, and dieting does not reduce weight; dieting usually causes weight gain and is very harmful to health. The best way to reduce obesity is to tell the truth about how it is caused and how to reduce it safely. - Dieting (reducing calorie intake) does not reduce obesity because obesity is not caused by overeating. Obesity is caused by fluid retention in people who are vulnerable/sensitive to salt. These people can lose weight easily and fast by avoiding salt and salty food. - They can lose excess weight even more rapidly by eating plenty of fruit and vegetables because these foods contain a lot of potassium,and potassium helps to remove excess salt from the body - i.e. potassium displaces sodium in the body. - See vulnerable groups