17 January 2012

Fat is the New Normal.

Get over it, people.  Really.  It bothers me that someone would even say that 1 in 3 adults is "obese."   I looked up the definition and it said "very fat or overweight; corpulent."  Obviously if 1 in 3 people are above a given BMI, it is now NORMAL to be in that weight category.  One THIRD of ALL people are in that weight category.  That means they need to adjust the charts because you can't say it's unusual any more; it must be evolution or something (cough cornsyrupandotheradditives cough).   How can you even be called "fat" if 1 in 3 people, 1 in THREE, is also "obese."  Um, good grief, they aren't even bothering to get hepped up about "overweight" any more.

When I was a size 5 and walked for six miles a day and lived on 1600 calories, I was actually overweight.  By a pound.  And that pound really, really REALLY bothered me.  Now?  I would be ok with about 40 pounds over that ideal for reallio.  Actually, I think about 30 over is a healthy weight, not this running about, living on diet pop and a handful of chocolate chips and a bowl of cereal.  Not that I do that anymore.  At all.

I think decisions about who needs to lose weight and who doesn't should be made by a physician and a patient.  The physician can keep build and family history and other factors in mind when advising his patients. 

It really bothers me that people are just looking to the charts and not just being realistic about things.  People of "normal" weight can be overweight and "overweight" people can be just fine.  And yeah... I won't dispute the central premise of articles like these... you can't really expect to be 4 ft 2, weigh 899 pounds, and be perfectly healthy... I get that.  I'm not disputing that.  Nor am I disputing that most of us could stand to lose a few.  But don't say they're obese because that's a more relative term.  Overweight.  You can be overweight by a pound or 500 based on YOUR body and what its best weight would be.  Why do we have to classify people by HOW overweight they are on some dopey chart?  Is it a case of "yeah, I'm fat, but not quite as dangerously fat as you?"  Why do they do that on the charts?  Why do they even have charts?

I can't imagine people have less willpower today than they did in 1874... and yet until recently the number of people considered overweight has increased.  I wonder why.  Just seems the more we measure this the worse it gets.  SOMETIMES I think that we should just toss the scale and look at our pant sizes, what we should realistically be able to wear.  We really don't need an exact weight unless our doctor needs it for dosing medications.  Based on my pant size scale, I have a lot of work to do.  :)


  1. I don't worry about numbers...I worry about over all health, how you feel, how you move, how you breathe.

    BMI is an imperfect measuring resource, too.

    But we will be making changes this year....you never know when a surprise trip to NY could happen! :) Love you.

  2. I joined Weight Watchers recently mostly because when I go to the doctor about ANYTHING... my ears, my PSOS, anything, they look at me and say.. It's your weight (duh). Of course there's they PCOS excess weight vicious circle.

    I figure if I get rid of 70 percent of what is considered excess weight, maybe a doctor will take me seriously before I go deaf and/or a cyst bursts.

  3. I'm overweight by 30 pounds and it hasn't bothered me too much until just recently. I'm healthy enough, but I'm only five feet tall and carrying too much weight for my small bones. Still didn't bother me overly much, but last weekend it was very hot here, so I was wearing short shorts and a tank top to clean the house, and I saw myself in the big mirror. Too big boobs, a "spare tyre" (car sized) above the waist, another "spare tyre" truck sized below the waist, big jelly belly below that and a big bum behind it all. NOW the weight bothers me. I just don't look good and it's time to do something about it. Starting with the amount of icecream and chocolate I eat. No more. Well, a lot less anyway. I'll settle for losing 20 of the 30 pounds.

  4. Actually Elf Mom, people weigh more in 2012 than they did in 1874 because in 1874 they ate real food and not this processed stuff we eat today.

    It's pretty simple and comes into focus clearly for nerds (or weight fanatics) like me who care enough to analyze the difference between the way the stuff on the shelves today affects body chemistry compared to what they ate way back when.

    That said, I do think that most weight loss charts set an unrealistic standard and I myself have gotten quite comfortable with being 10-15 pounds above what the charts say is my "ideal" weight.

    I think the charts and categories are meant to scare people into losing weight. It's not going to work.

  5. If you haven't seen the documentary "Fat Head" yet, check it out. It's not terribly we'll put together, but he makes some really good points (many aimed directly at "Super-size Me").

    But one thing he reveals is that the "1 in 3 are obese" stat is based on a change in the definition of obese that improperly handles the data. Very fascinating bits of information in there...


  6. When I went down to 140lbs, Wii Fit was saying I was really, really overweight. My husband told me to please not lose anymore weight or I would look unhealthy. I decided not to listen to Wii Fit and go by what really mattered.

  7. A couple of years back there was a study that found that people in the "mildly overweight" BMI category actually lived longer than people in the correct BMI category. Obviously, the BMI scale needs to be corrected.

    I'll see if I can find a reference ...


Non-troll comments always welcome! :)