Our obesity epidemic
George Monbiot’s analysis of the obesity epidemic (24 August) is surely on the mark about the role of sugar we now ingest from products marketed by food and drink companies. But it cannot be correct that daily kilo-calorie intake and physical activity remain the same as compared to 1976. Weight gain comes from some combination of excess intake and reduced energy outgo taken over time. Social status, environment and failed public policy are, as Monbiot states, drivers of the imbalance. Norbert Hirschhorn London, UK
• I was disappointed that George Monbiot came to no conclusion as to why we are becoming fatter while eating less. Could it be because we now have too little fat in our diet? Low-fat yoghurts don’t make us feel full.
The sugar in everything we eat is too efficiently absorbed. Fat is not very efficiently absorbed by our digestion, makes us feel full and kept us slim in the past, when fat in the diet was acceptable. Fifty years ago, my uncle’s frying pan would be awash with lard as he cooked his bacon and eggs. By today’s standard, he was far from fat. David Woodroffe Luton, UK