The UK newspaper "The Independent" just ran an article entitled "Eating ourselves to death".
Obesity is rising fast in the UK. Deaths due to obesity have risen by 35% over five years, even though there is a lot of under-reporting (read the article). By the year 2050, the cost to tax payers of medical problems due to obesity through the National Health Service and other agencies is expected to rise to £50bn a year. That is a huge amount of money. Just maybe spending a small proportion of that sum on truly encouraging cycling might be a way of reducing this vast expense later on ?
It's pretty obvious from walking down the road here that there are far fewer obese people in this country. It's also obvious that there are a lot more active people.
In related news, the BBC recently had a story on how "Increasing activity levels in middle age can prolong life as much as giving up smoking". Another good reason to promote cycling. Dutch over 60s make a quarter of all their journeys by bike. They are relatively fit and trim, and they have a longer life-expectancy than British people - despite the higher smoking rate and availability of food as pictured here.
The image is of poffertjes (small pancakes served in this case with cream, strawberries and lots of sugar) and beer as eaten by a participant on one of our tours last year. Delicious, and not too unhealthy so long as you are getting plenty of exercise on a cycling holiday.