Some medical experts predict that by 2020, three out of four Americans will be overweight or obese. They suggest we immediately moderate our diets and begin exercising daily. Fat chance!

Instead, one bold legislative stroke would help reverse the trend by requiring licensing of TV remote control devices and making it as difficult to get that license as it is to get a permit to carry a concealed weapon. Any person capable of waddling unaided to his or her refrigerator would be ineligible.

If licensing isn’t politically possible, calorie expenditure and muscle-toning could be improved if the remote devices were only available in heavier designs, perhaps in the size and weight of bowling balls and dumbbells. Another advantage of king-sizing would be the remotes would not easily slip between the couch pillows or end up in a jacket pocket and ultimately, the washing machine.

Way back in pre-remote days, as a channel surfer, I would cover a quarter mile in my average size living room on any evening trudging back and forth to change channels or to silence annoying commercials or politicians.

With the New York Mets and Yankees games airing on separate channels, I’d expend as many calories as one of their infielders in my lunges from couch to TV to keep up with both games. The same applied to Sunday’s New York Giants and Jets football games. I was exhausted after hours of broken field running around the coffee table to the channel knob.

There was a primitive voice-activated remote control system back then. I would call out, “Carolyn, please change the TV to Channel 2 for Daddy.” But that wasn’t always reliable. Carolyn was in kindergarten then and wasn’t sure what 2 looked like. If she happened to come across a cartoon show, all was lost.

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