Trans Fat Ban Goes Voluntary Route in L.A.
Los Angeles county and city officials on Tuesday are expected to propose a voluntary ban on trans fat in restaurants, according to KQED's "California Report" (Myrow, "California Report," KQED, 1/29).
A report released on Friday by the county Department of Public Health found that current state law prohibits the county from banning artificial trans fats in restaurants or requiring restaurant to disclose nutritional information in menus (California Healthline, 1/29).
The Los Angeles City Council is expected to propose that restaurants voluntarily phase out trans fats over the next 18 months, KQED reports. Some local restaurants and national chains have expressed support for the voluntary ban.
Los Angeles County is considering a voluntary ban as well, according to Supervisor Yvonne Burke.
A number of state lawmakers also have proposed legislation that would limit trans fats (Myrow, "California Report," KQED, 1/29).
"California Report" on Monday also examined how a decrease in physical education programs at public schools has led some parents to enroll their children in private gyms.
Private children's gyms, such as the San Fernando-based chain My Gym, offer fitness class for children ages three months to 13 years, KQED reports.
Simon Marshall of the Department of Exercise and Nutritional Sciences at San Diego State University said private gym classes, which cost around $70 per month, likely will do little to reduce childhood obesity in low-income or minority populations.
"We know that the highest rates of obesity and inactivity are not children of white, affluent parents," Marshall said, adding, "It's usually minority children, especially girls" (Ford-Roth, "California Report," KQED, 1/29).
Audio of the segments is available online.