According to the latest Time magazine, not a single state in the union has an obesity rate of less than 20%—-and a thinner population is not on the horizon. An August 13th report from the Center for Disease Control and Prevention found that more than a third of U.S. adults were obese in 2011, and the number of states with a very high percentage of obese adults has reached 12. Whenever I read these kinds of statistics I am consumed with the question “why” has this happened and how fat will we get? If this is the path we are following than how we live is going to have to change. There will have to be bigger cars with larger seats, king size beds will only be good enough for one person, houses will have to be made with timbers that are strong enough to hold the weight of a small elephant. Fuel costs for travel will skyrocket. If the passengers on a plane exceed the weight in the cargo hold then how will the plane get off the ground? And what will happen to the fashion industry? Forget the little shrink wrapped tops and short skirts and shoes with needle heels. The sidewalks will be pockmarked from the weight on the heels and let’s face it short skirts are not exactly an obese woman’s fashion fantasy. There might be a return to caftans and shrouds which certainly would be a lot more comfortable and have a lot more room for expansion. Okay, I’m being silly about some of the above, but the “why” of increased weight is a hot subject. Blame is placed on excessive sugary drinks, red meat, dairy, fat and a host of other foods. Lack of exercise is always seen as the culprit. And then there are those who believe they have found the “answer” by developing diets that remove the culprits, or create combinations that refer back to days of yore. There is the Paleo diet, the Hunter/Farmer diet, the 21 day Carb program. You name it, create it, swear that you lost weight, bingo you’re rich. Whatever happened to common sense. Farmers worked in fields all day, and hunters walked all day. The average person today has something they now call the “sitting disease”. If you don’t move, you don’t lose, and if you eat too much of anything you gain weight! However in my humble opinion the real culprit is stress. We are a nation of under nurtured, not undernourished individuals seeking comfort. And food has become the next best thing to soothing ourselves from the onslaught of being overwhelmed by our busy schedules. The mounting pressures of trying to keep up are not only adding to our guts but they are also reducing our ability to savor life.
6 Replies to “How fat will we get?”
This was dead on…our lives are so out of balance. I’ve been saying this for years…you can make restricted options the law of the land and it wont solve this issue…truly we are emotionally and spiritually emaciated.
” houses will have to be made with timbers that are strong enough to hold the weight of a small elephant.” Lol but true! three of my friends sitting in the RV broke the bench seat.. one sat on my sofa .. when she got up the sofa stayed flat :/ I had to have the good couch carried upstairs to prevent it from getting ruined. 300-400 pounds is a lot to carry and it’s a lot when you put it down too. this is a true story: Denise’ mom went to a fancy restaurant that had Captain’s Chairs. As she consumed she expanded. By the end of the meal she wasn’t able to extricate herself from her seat and had to be Cut Out! Do you really think it is stress? my Dad, “Jolly (fat) Jack” was stressed into eating those danish pastries? I’m the reverse. I can’t even smell food when I am upset. my pants are hanging off me now, too much sadness in this world. My dog is dying 🙁
to my obese friends: I need your cheerfulness and laughter! I don’t care how fat you get but you should. your experiences won’t be so limited. Can’t we Love each other’s stresses away?
It’s not just the stress, it’s also all the medications for all of the illnesses related to stress. Those medications come with a host of side effects, and weight gain is usually one of them. Obesity rates have been level for the last 10 years or so, so we aren’t getting fatter, it’s just that there’s more notice taken of it, more hand-wringing done over it, more “we have to do something about it NOW” in the media.
Fat people have been around for thousands of years – who do you think was the model for the Venus of Willendorf? It wasn’t a thin woman, and she wasn’t a figment of the artist’s imagination. The ability to store fat is what enabled humanity to survive times of famine, and if we eradicate that ability now, we’re dooming humanity to extinction – if global warming continues, and crops fail, and food shortages come to be the norm, the first people who are going to die out are going to be the ones who don’t have the ability to store every calorie they can as a reserve. Fat people have that ability, and fat people are going to be the ones who survive the longest, hopefully to be able to repair what’s been broken…………..
If the real culprit is stress, how about the stress of constantly, thousands of times a day, being told that no matter what you do you’re a useless drain on society because you’re fat? Being told you’re going to die any second now? Newspapers printing misleading articles about small, poorly conducted studies because they found an insignificant correlation between weight and some poor health outcome (while ignoring large, properly conducted studies that found no correlation or occasionally a negative correlation, as in, it’s not even correlated with much less the cause of whatever they were studying to begin with).
What about the stress caused by bloggers who think it is just hilariously funny to compare you to a small elephant, suggest that you need to hide yourself under a caftan, or that just walking on a sidewalk with heels on will cause structural damage?
You know, someone here DOES need to get a life. And it isn’t the targets of your bigotry.
My husband and I really enjoyed your programs that aired on PBS a few years back.
When I listen to the gurus of weight loss, I have to laugh because you called them
terrorists of the table. i grew up in a family much like yours (Italian-American) and
we really ate well and none of us was fat (no junk food). Unlike the gurus, who
think we should eliminate everything from our diets that is the least bit enjoyable
or tasty, we ate EVERYTHING, BUT IN MODERATION. And we were always
very active. Thank you so much for these wonderful commentaries. And,
come back to PBS.
Stress certainly is a key issue but its not just emotional stress from work its chemical stress from parabens & the like in our cosmetics, its electromagnetic stress from lack of quality sleep & too much tv. Obviously consuming a diet from Real foods not cutting out Fat(good fat- coconut oil, organic butter etc) is also a major contributor as the amount of pesticides, herbicides, fungicides, preservatives & colourings are chronically upsetting our hormonal balance therefore slowing down our metabolism.
We must first get healthy to lose weight, not lose weight to get healthy!
Any attempt to do this without a Holistic approach is set for failure…