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Skinny jeans, skinnier wallets

Natalie Veissalov, Editor in Chief

Natalie Veissalov, Editor in Chief

A junk food tax has caused some uproar and disappointment. Many people who enjoy their high-sweetened sodas, potato chips and other preservative packed foods think it is unfair to impose such a tax, especially since we are taxed enough as it is.

Local governments and medical institutions believe taxes should be imposed on people who buy junk food because of the medical problems these people face from eating unhealthy foods, which leads to high amount of spending on treating heart disease and diabetes.

But there should be no tax imposed until local governments resolve some problems.

People on the other side who enjoy their junk food believe this is not fair because many industrial cities such as Detroit, only have convenience stores and no grocery stores with fresh produce.

And many people think the government has too much control over lives and should not but into our eating habits.

I think it is logical for the government to impose taxes on junk food because our country is facing high obesity rates and this will allow many to turn their life around by eating sensibly.

According to a statistic in the Los Angeles Times, if the price of soda is raised by 10 percent, the outcome would be an 8 percent to 10 percent decrease in soda consumption.

I believe in the long run people will be grateful for this junk food tax because they will have more energy during the day, face less medical problems and add years to their life.

However, I believe before the government imposes a junk food tax, they should take some things into consideration.

Many people believe placing taxes on junk food would make the poor even poorer.

Many people use the excuse of produce being more expensive than junk food, thus they choose preserved products over fresh fruits and vegetables.

First, cities, which only have convenience stores available, should create accessible markets where produce is sold.

Second, farmers markets should accept government issued food vouchers so low come families could buy fresh produce.

In addition to this, there should be guidance and encouragement on starting gardens in people’s home.

Not only would this be a cheaper option to eating more fruits and vegetables rather than junk food, but it would also be easier for those who do not have access to farmers markets or grocery stores where fresh produce is sold.

Not only does planting gardens in your backyard allow you to save money and have easier access to fresh produce, it allows a person to be active and relieve stress, which also could decrease obesity, heart disease and other medical problems.

When people garden, they tend to forget their stressful problems, relax and just concentrate on gardening.

Consequently, it would decrease the impact obesity has on healthcare costs.

Another benefit of planting a garden would allow many people to save money on gas since they do not have to make trips to the market.

They have fresh produce right in their backyard.

A junk food tax would be a blessing in disguise.

Governments should begin to impose them once these big issues are resolved, to ensure people are maintaining a healthy lifestyle and preventing obesity, which will prevent high medical spending associated with obesity.

For tips and information on gardening,visit

Natalie Veissalov, a junior journalism major, is editor in chief of the Campus Times. She can be reached by e-mail at

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