Market manager Kelsey Abad organizes local hydroponic-grown tomatoes at the Wild Ramp food store in Huntington, W.Va., in 2019. The city undertook slow, incremental changes to reduce its obesity rate.

It’s weird that we’re still fighting about the root of obesity. In two decades of journalism, I’ve talked with a wide swath of the public health community, and one obesity-related issue — and possibly only one — unites them. When you peel back the objections to fat, or carbs, or processed foods, you get to the real problem: The food environment changed.

Just this month,in a paper about obesity as a risk factor for severe novel coronavirus infection published in the BMJ, the authors say: “The obesity pandemic is the result of living in food environments where it is difficult not to overconsume calories.” Full stop. It is not controversial.

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