Government needs to lead by example on treats
It's a case of 'Do as I say, not as I do' when it comes to the Government and nutrition. Ireland is on track to become Europe's fattest nation by 2030, nearly two-thirds of the public are either obese or overweight and the crisis is costing us €1.13bn annually.
The Government seemed serious when it publicly pledged to tackle this, but, in private, it seems it doesn't follow its own advice.
Just like former Taoiseach Charlie Haughey who wore Charvet shirts while telling the nation to tighten its belt, our politicians have been scoffing on junk food while telling the rest of us to drop a few notches on our waistbands.
A look inside the fridge of the private jet tells us everything we need to know about their attitude to nutrition - there's not a piece of fruit on board. Instead, Pringles, toffee sweets, sucky mints, Doritos, sour cream, sugar-laden breakfast bars, cereals with 23g of sugar, salsa dips, Guinness, Coca-Cola, wine, Tayto crisps, biscuits and more dominate. There's the option of salad of course - but do you want me to believe that ministers are reaching for lettuce leaves in place of the other on-flight staples: pastries and white bread sandwiches?
Who knows what the stock of "ketchup, mustard and mayonnaise" is spread on.
To his credit, Taoiseach Leo Varadkar has been a shining light in recent months, shedding three stone and is often spotted jogging. He has also only flown on the jet twice since becoming Taoiseach but that was two months ago - how difficult is it to give a PA a memo to stock up on fruit and yoghurt? Remember, this is the former Minister for Health. Sure, a junk food-only stash on board the government jet is small fry in the grand scheme of things.
But, as with obese children - whose problem can often be traced back to the home - a similar link can be made between a country's shocking record on obesity and the attitudes of those in charge. How serious are we really about getting to grips with our addiction to junk food?
As French gastronome Jean Anthelme Brillat-Savarin once wrote: "Tell me what you eat and I will tell you what you are."
I wonder what he would have made of our lot.