Obesity a disease now?

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    Obesity a disease now?

    Heard on the news that officials want to declare obesity a disease. Here's my problem with that.....

    1. The goverment has put out the food "pyramid". I never did agree with it, for various reasons, but the primary being that I think it's using flawed and misleading logic in the way it is presented.

    2. Now MY tax dollars have to treat someone who can't figure out that MickyD's and the like aren't serving healthy food? This is akin to that guy that tried to sue fast food places for "making" him fat. (I know that we are already paying for obese people's health problems, but if WE have to pay for gym memberships and whatnot, why can't they?)

    3. If the goverment really cared about peoples health they would rid some of the food industries practices. They would give major tax breaks to organic producers, and the ranchers that raise grass feed beef ONLY since that's the natural diet for these animals anyway.

    I dunno....I am off base here? Sorry if this sounds like a rant. Just torks me off that they would even consider this a disease when it's really a matter of willpower and education. If you have kids in school that eat a school lunch, take a good look at what they serve. Not exactly the healthiest stuff you can eat.

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    I agree with you bud. I dont think its a disease also. I know when I was fat (morbidly obese) I would eat shit. I got tired of it and got my ass in the gym because I saw myself and did not like what I saw. Its ridiculous that the government would help these people who do not have willpower to do the same. I understand that moral may be down but still its not a thumbs up in my book.
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    anyone down for a group lawsuit to sue burger king cuase they got us fat?

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    I wonder if laziness, lack of motivation, and passing the buck are diseases too.

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    Originally posted by NeedMuscleMass
    anyone down for a group lawsuit to sue burger king cuase they got us fat?
    Let's get Twin Peak and we'll do a class action!

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    I use to think similar things as you all about it all being attitude, laziness and nutrition. There is truth in this thinking up to the point that a person permanently damages one’s metabolism. At which point (barring psychological disorders) obesity begins to look like a true disease since it just cascades out of control as mobility and metabolism slow down. If you read the literature there is a clear indication that after exceeding a certain threshold of excess weight one’s metabolism can be permanently damaged and it may become impossible to get the body to ever again select fat tissue as the preferred fuel. There are also various studies that link obesity with childhood feeding and how heavy the mother was at gestation and what she ate. We really need a whole lot more study since it is clearly better to never get overweight in the first place. It’s extremely hard to lose weight and keep it off if you get over certain thresholds (typically about 20 lbs overweight) since one’s metabolic set point changes and the adipose tissue actually becomes like a new organ that adapts in ways not fully understood. Once insulin insensitivity sets in (pre diabetes and insulin insensitivity are one of the most common aliments in this country) about the only natural way to improve things is with resistance training. But there seem to be limits on how far this will revert the condition. Other than that option it’s a life long regiment of special drugs and very narrow diet intake to hold it all in check. So for a guy that is not big on taxation in this case I am all in favor of putting up the red flag and calling it a disease. This moniker it will lead to more budget being spent to help an extremely large majority of US citizens. It’s certainly money better spent that many many other programs and hopefully it will result in money being taken from those other wasteful programs that serve only small special interest constituencies.
    "Doc, If I had known I was going to live this long I would have taken better care of myself..."

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    I dont believe that everyone eats out of controll portions that is overweight, but numbers would not be increasing so rapidly if laziness and diet didn't have something to do with it.

    Poor diet and lack of excersize are part of todays society.

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    This should be discouraging enough to not eat fast food, which helps make America the most over weight nation.

    The Fast Food Nation:The Darkside of the All American Meal by Eric Schlosser

    http://www.amazon.com/exec/obidos/tg...books&n=507846

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    Originally posted by Mudge
    I dont believe that everyone eats out of controll portions that is overweight, but numbers would not be increasing so rapidly if laziness and diet didn't have something to do with it.

    Poor diet and lack of excersize are part of todays society.
    Mudge, I agree with your final statement about poor diet and lack of exercise (or activity). But I think it is an unfair generalization to call all these people lazy. “Physical Inactivity” is the more scientific and objective view and proper term in my opinion. “Laziness” implies all sorts of bad things like its all fundamentally their choice to be lazy. It may be for some but many others are just at their limit to get by everyday doing the modern work routine and come home to tend to family matters etc. Still others are just nutritionally ignorant and are clueless that they are being fed things that are killing them (both in proportion size and in formulation and absorption rate). I don’t think it is so much laziness as it is our “modern” lifestyle and lack of time. There have always been lazy populations all through history that were not as obese as we are - abundance and the enhanced taste and freshness of food is also much greater now. Really though, exercise is a luxury anymore with an information and serviced based economy. People are literally working themselves to death to pay the bills and posses more material things. So greed or the unhealthy desire for possessions is a part of this too. To get more time out of the day many workers take fast 10 minute lunches from the junk food machines or drive throughs and eat junk that is only one step removed from poison (e.g. trans fats, corn syrups additives, sugars, sodium, hydrogonized and saturated fats). It use to be that humanity got all its exercise automatically in conjunction with their jobs – mostly farming and manual labor. Since the kinds of work in this country have shifted predominantly from labor to information and service (e.g. phones, computers, desk work etc.) we lost the ability to mostly get free activity as a byproduct of our labor. Clearly we need to rethink if this is a better model for society in the long run if its going to wipe out the population. The ones that are healthy are the ones that either have time to do supplemental exercise or have a way to incorporate exercise into their job routines (or even on the job or on the way to and from it). Of course there are also those that have very high metabolisms and have much more margin for error when it comes to nutritional macro nutrient, caloric and activity imbalance.

    In my opinion the biggest factor leading to obesity in our country is the: 1) lack of time and integrated physical activity, 2) abundance of extremely bad formualted foods that are designed to be highly pleasing to the palate and 3) the minute by minute bombardment of food advertising in all forms of media (tv, radio, papers, magazines, internet etc.) that a person is exposed to daily (not to mention peer influences that cascade the media exposure on the job and at home). I also suspect taht there is a cross correlation between the lack of time, stress and the calming effect food initially gives people.

    Bottom line - People are stressed, over worked, professionally targeted for food addiction and have damaged metabolisms. Most have little time available to fight back on their own to health or get educated and are basically under seige. Most will not escape this cycle without help.
    "Doc, If I had known I was going to live this long I would have taken better care of myself..."

    Est unusquisque faber ipsae suae fortunae.

    We Americans scoff at the likes of African witch doctors yet spend 100's of millions of dollars on fake reducing systems.

    The only regular exercise he gets is stretching the truth.

    His intellect is not replenished, he is only an animal, only sensible in the duller parts...

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    Hmmm, good point, but I still don't see it as a disease. Even if they do end up classifying it as such.....when do you start treatment? Pointless if it's later in life when the wieght problem has already caused other health problems. (Diabetes, Hypertension, etc.)

    So, you'd have to start treatment in the childhood years and it would not simply work. Why? Because parents would still let their kids slam down twinkies and soda. Because the school lunches are NOT healthy (IMHO, based on the menus my kids bring home), and even if you made them so they kids would just go buy a bag of chips, a candy bar and a soda from the machines that schools HAVE put in, etc. and avoid the cafeteria.

    I think laziness is part of it, but it's being taught to a certain extent (learned behavior). Look at any 12 year that is obviously obese, then take a look into how they are being raised. Oftentimes, they come home, drink a soda, eat some junk food, and sit down playing video games until it's time to eat. Even if the parents give a healthy meal, they'll let the kid drink soda with it. Either that, or they pick up something at the local chicken and burger joint for dinner 4 out of 7 nights.

    So in that (not so) hypothetical example, is it a disease, or is it abuse?

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    Obviously, I didn't see your your reply above mine when I posted, OceanDude. More of a reply to your first post in this thread.

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    Originally posted by OceanDude
    “Laziness” implies all sorts of bad things like its all fundamentally their choice to be lazy.
    I look at humans in a half empty perspective most of the time. Example; No parking within 30 feet of thier apartment building, so subject drives around the entire apartment complex more than once waiting to find parking nearby as if someone is going to leave. Now they could have parked outside of the complex which is a 4 minute walk (I know that for sure), but instead spent more time, sitting in thier car, going in circles because they are so lazy that they are willing to WORK for it!

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    Originally posted by Stickboy
    Hmmm, good point, but I still don't see it as a disease. Even if they do end up classifying it as such.....when do you start treatment? Pointless if it's later in life when the wieght problem has already caused other health problems. (Diabetes, Hypertension, etc.)

    So, you'd have to start treatment in the childhood years and it would not simply work. Why? Because parents would still let their kids slam down twinkies and soda. Because the school lunches are NOT healthy (IMHO, based on the menus my kids bring home), and even if you made them so they kids would just go buy a bag of chips, a candy bar and a soda from the machines that schools HAVE put in, etc. and avoid the cafeteria.

    I think laziness is part of it, but it's being taught to a certain extent (learned behavior). Look at any 12 year that is obviously obese, then take a look into how they are being raised. Oftentimes, they come home, drink a soda, eat some junk food, and sit down playing video games until it's time to eat. Even if the parents give a healthy meal, they'll let the kid drink soda with it. Either that, or they pick up something at the local chicken and burger joint for dinner 4 out of 7 nights.

    So in that (not so) hypothetical example, is it a disease, or is it abuse?
    Children are making their own misinformed decisions and doing stupid things in ever increasing numbers. Their parents and supervision are letting them get away with it and in some cases encouraging it (drugs, sex, poor nutrition). Some of the common factors in all these self destructive behaviors irrespective of age are: lack of maturity, lack of responsibility, lack of self control and ignorance or indifference to the consequences of the behaviors. The line between adult and adolescent behavior has become very blurred and many adults are reverting back to irresponsible childish behavior. The children, lacking proper role models and good examples do what all the other kids and their parents do. So this problem is clearly more than just obesity since it transcends an entire spectrum of societal problems that are largely behavioral related (with a lot of encouragement from what I would call the misery merchants). In essence our entire society could be diagnosed as very sick and diseased on many simultaneous fronts other than just obesity. But there are too many issues for us to consider here. Triage is necessary for those that actually want help but the selfish and stubborn would rather infect all of society than give up their freedoms to make pigs of themselves and worse.

    I am told that many schools have actually taken Physical Education out of the curriculum. If this is true many kids will be doomed to physical mediocrity, poor self esteem and lack of overall confidence. When I was in school we had required physical activity almost every day – and it was rigorous and very demanding. The coach would make us all run fairly long distance laps right at the start of class (and more if we were not paying attention to instruction). He encouraged us to go as fast as we could so we would have more time to do the more fun recreational things sooner (e.g. soccer, swimming, football, basketball etc.). There was an important lesson in priorities in all this too – “do difficult things first and play later”. It taught us the universal principals of motivation, sacrifice and reward. We had a lot of fun.

    To answer your question. I think any school administrator or parent that lets a marketer talk them into putting in vending machines and serving junk food in school should be found guilty of child abuse and wanton abandonment of custodianship. This is clearly an encouraged abuse. It becomes an infectious disease (mental) as soon as an adult custodian starts to rationalize that it’s a child’s right to have the freedom to choose which poisons he should take at the same time the schools collect revenues from the sales.
    "Doc, If I had known I was going to live this long I would have taken better care of myself..."

    Est unusquisque faber ipsae suae fortunae.

    We Americans scoff at the likes of African witch doctors yet spend 100's of millions of dollars on fake reducing systems.

    The only regular exercise he gets is stretching the truth.

    His intellect is not replenished, he is only an animal, only sensible in the duller parts...

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    I'm reading "Fast Food Nation" right now - an excellent read. My sister read it before she gave it to me and said she won't ever eat fast food again unless it's totally her last choice.

    As for obesity being a disease, my mode of thought on this is that is is more a mental disease than physical. I agree partially with what OD said about the metabolism being altered, but I also believe strongly that this doesn't occur until the subject is about 200 pounds overweight, not 20. There are dozens of examples of people out there who are 100-200 pounds overweight who do manage to adjust their metabolism and lose weight and have a healthy lifestyle in the long run. I am a big believer in the ability of the body to adapt to whatever you throw at it, no matter what condition you are in.

    As for the whole society thing, I think this all starts with education, reinforcement by the government and proper parenting skills. There is no government agency (at least here in Canada) that does anything for physical fitness. Even the Ministry of Health has no clue about proper guidelines and they do nothing to reinforce the fact that exercise and proper diet can help you be not only in better shape, but happier and help you live longer. As with many other things in life, too many parents want a quick fix and don't actually want to parent their children at all, schools don't want to take the time because pay for teachers is pathetic (or can't because they are overcrowded) or they are getting bought off by food companies. It's a really horrible situation.

    Personally if and when I have children it's going to be a tough call whether or not I even send them to public school at all.
    Today I can do what others will not so that tomorrow I will do what others cannot.

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