Probably the Best Picture of a Haggis Ever

Maybe Haggis Is the Answer to America’s Excess Obesity

The birthday of Scotland’s beloved poet, Robert Burns, is upon us. Kilts, Scotch, and haggis will be the centerpiece of celebrations in Scotland — but the haggis will be hard to find in the U.S. Lord McColl of Dulwich sees this as a compound problem. The retired professor of surgery and Conservative member the British House of Lords told his peers:

Mirror Infographic - The Slimming Power of HaggisThe U.S. government are depriving 24 million American Scots of this wholesome food which satisfies hunger very much more than the junk food Americans consume. This would help to deal with the greatest epidemic they have – the obesity epidemic, which is killing millions, costing billions of dollars and the cure is free.

That was easy!

But some skeptical party poopers beg to differ. Another retired medical professor, Lord Winston of the Labour Party, calls Haggis “disgusting” and says that if it’s so effective against obesity, “maybe we should be promoting it a little bit in Glasgow.” Though Scotland’s obesity rate is lower than the rate in the U.S., Japan’s is lower still. Perhaps we should emulate the Japanese instead. Others have pointed out that high saturated fat and salt in haggis will keep it out of the health foods category.

haggis_nutritional_information[1]There’s also the matter of getting FDA to approve lungs — the key ingredient in haggis — for consumption in the U.S. Then restrictions on importing lamb from the UK get in the way as well.

Lord McColl got our hopes up. But it seems that haggis will not be solving the American problem with obesity anytime soon.

Click here to read more from the Mirror and here to read more from Business Insider.

Probably the Best Picture of a Haggis Ever, photograph © Janet Ramsden / flickr

Subscribe by email to follow the accumulating evidence and observations that shape our view of health, obesity, and policy.


7 Responses to “Maybe Haggis Is the Answer to America’s Excess Obesity”

  1. January 20, 2015 at 8:11 am, Susan Burke March said:

    Is it April 1?

    • January 20, 2015 at 8:40 am, Ted said:

      This guy is serious. In fairness, his idea is backed by as much evidence as some of the policies we’ve tried without his help.

  2. January 20, 2015 at 8:33 am, Mary-Jo said:

    Oh my! Well, Ted, I lived in Scotland for awhile and have been to many a Burns Night supper. The ceremony and fun of this event certainly made us eat less, dance more, as well as reflect quite a bit as the words of Robbie Burns are read out while the haggis is presented, cut, and served. But, I think the main reason why it may help is people would eat alot less — it’s, shall we say, an ‘acquired taste’. Nutritionally, it has a few fantastic ingredients, like oatmeal, onions, and healthy spices, but it is high in sodium and fat. Scotland has the highest obesity prevalence in the UK, so I think Lord McColl of Dulwich needs to get all his facts together before we start prescribing it for the masses! Scottish Nationalists are a fiercely opinionated group, but are the best people I’ve ever met!

    • January 20, 2015 at 8:40 am, Ted said:

      Well said, Mary-Jo.

  3. January 20, 2015 at 8:47 am, Mary-Jo said:

    I don’t doubt for a minute that he is serious and certainly you’re so right that the evidence for the haggis effect is as robust as some of the policies that have been tried. 🙂

  4. January 20, 2015 at 6:34 pm, Susan said:

    Agree with the first comment. Scotland is the home of the deep-fried Mars Bar.
    However, Japanese food is very high in salt and they are not averse to deep-frying as well – the key to the slimmer Japanese waist line is the quantity they eat.