After my little rant the other day I felt that I needed to expand on some of my comments so here it is.
I referred to the fact that as a society there seems to be a push towards acceptance of obesity. The promotion that being obese is something we should be comfortable with and that it’s ‘ok’. I am certainly not against the notion that big is beautiful or anything like that, I have some amazing beautiful friends who carry more weight than they really should from a health perspective and also from their own aesthetic satisfaction.
Remember the saying ‘It’s whats inside that counts’ it couldn’t be more true. I know what the true definition of this isn’t what we’re getting at but it DOES stand true in this discussion.
I was the fat kid at school and know all of the crap as a child that comes with it. I’m fundamentally the same person I was back then. I’m happier with the skin I’m in, healthier, more confident for the most part and a high chance I will live longer. If we where to write all the pros and cons of being overweight it would be a VERY one sided list right?
I understand that personalities may not change, as I said I know plenty of amazing and attractive individuals that carry more weight than they really want. Maybe they’re happy with it, maybe they’re not? I don’t know and the purpose of this article isn’t to beg that question.
The purpose behind this article is to express concern. As a nation with a very large obesity problem that is without doubt slowly killing people and lowering quality of life are we starting to give in and accept its ok for people to eat badly?
I am concerned by the conclusive association between visual obesity and actual extreme levels of visceral and central abdominal fat. This is the main stuff responsible for killing people.
‘It’s whats inside that counts’
Fig 1. Scan looking at visceral and central abdominal fat.
Now this isn’t reserved to visually obese people. This is infact as big of a problem with those blessed with fast metabolic function and what we class as ectomorph tendencies. These people eat ‘what they want’. Opportunity and the ability to consume substandard and processed foods without visual impact lead to an even higher incidence of ‘silent death’. As much as you may not want to believe it, the vast percentage of people will only be concerned by health when it impacts them visually or financially.
This whole issue, the way I see it revolves right around to the fact that as a nation we are embracing as well as becoming addicted and reliant on junk, convenience and processed foods as our staple. Those that choose not to be drawn into this are looked at as outcasts or people who are ‘obsessed’ and those that do are accepted. Only last week it was reported that a woman from Arizona dreamt of being the worlds biggest bride, gorging on 30,000k/cal a day with a goal body weight of 1600lbs??
If I am seen to sit down on public transport and open Tupperware full of high quality ‘food’ I am treated like a minority. If I eat a pre packed piece of processed food from a brown paper bag or a bottle of sugar and water it’s ok as ‘that’s normal’ and acceptable.
We continue to accept anti social behaviour and fail to see distinct patterns with the foods we eat, we accept chronic and degenerative illness and the same patterns. We live in a society with more knowledge about human physiology, health and medicine than ever before in history but we yield to convenience. We have let food become a poison and we are slowly succumbing to its effect (slowed down by prescription drugs). This sadly all revolves around money and the greed of others to profit from it.
The seven deadly sins are very much alive and kicking people.
Do I know a solution? All I do know is that there is more than a distinct lack of education across multiple generations about food and basic human physiology. This stems and resonates across the political make-up of the country. In the entire health department of the UK government, the people ultimately making the decisions regarding our nations health they are all from anything BUT a background where this basic knowledge would exist. I would even be confident if I was to speak to the whole department about basic nutrition they would know very little besides what foods we need to sell more of in agricultural circles.
It’s a VERY big topic and one that needs further work. We are reliant on people to get out there and educate across every generation. There are solutions to these issues but what we can’t do is give in and believe it’s hopeless!!