How to cut back on obesity with Hartz IV?

The President of the German Teachers' Association, Josef Kraus, "in the last instance" also calls for child benefit or Hartz IV cuts to be made if advice and information are not fruitful.

(04.06.2010) The President of the German Teachers' Association Josef Kraus has triggered initiatives at Hartz-IV. In order to tackle the overweight of children, the teacher association boss "in the last instance" also suggests cuts in child benefit and the Hartz IV standard rates. Kraus told Bild Online: "Neglecting one's health, even neglecting it, is an offense. In extreme cases, if parents do not take care of healthy nutrition and enough exercise for their children, this is the start of child abuse." If the parents do nothing on the advice of the doctors, the youth welfare office should also be informed. In the last instance, child benefit and Hartz IV benefits should also be reduced, says Kraus. Furthermore, "regular mandatory advice with weight control" should be carried out by doctors in schools.

The "unemployed forum Germany" sharply criticized the statements of the head of the teachers' association and even called for resignation. Martin Behrsing said: "We even accuse Josef Kraus of being close to dangerous social racism and black pedagogy. He demands nothing more than that problems of overweight in poor people are punished by starvation." Behrsing added: "In our view, resignation from Kraus is the least".

The Hartz IV critical initiative "" also sees Kraus' statements, defamation towards the parents in the Hartz-IV. For example, the underestimated standard rate for children is to blame for malnutrition. The children have just 215 euros per month. "A healthy diet is closely linked to the prosperity of parents today. Children only receive 60 percent of the parents' Hartz IV standard rate. That's just 215 euros a month," says Sebastian Bertram from "".

The criticism of the two initiatives is not entirely unfounded. Inexpensive foods are often processed with artificial flavors and additives. Low-wage earners in particular are dependent on cheap finished products. Due to the constant supply of artificially produced aroma substances, the consumer loses control over his eating sensation. The result: you need more and more and in higher concentrations, a natural taste sensation is almost completely lost. Without realizing it, you become a "flavor addict". Nutritional science explains this connection as follows: The aromas almost trick the body. For example, if aromas signal artificial beef flavors, the human organism assumes that the consumer is actually eating beef. As a result, digestive glands are activated, which set the whole system to process beef. But instead of eating beef, you only eat artificial flavors. The body is betrayed and demands more food. As a consequence, the paradoxical phenomenon of civilization occurs, people become overweight at the same time and are still malnourished. (sb)

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