Mississippi lawmakers want to ban fat people from eating out.

I’m not sure if I qualify as obese, but I’m definitely on the heavy end of the scale and I know more than a few obese people. Then again, in America these days, who doesn’t? I’m aware of the health problems that being overweight brings with it and how much better off everyone would be if more of us could stick to a healthy diet, but I’m not sure this proposed law in Mississippi would really help:

FEBRUARY 1—Mississippi legislators this week introduced a bill that would make it illegal for state-licensed restaurants to serve obese patrons. Bill No. 282, a copy of which you’ll find below, is the brainchild of three members of the state’s House of Representatives, Republicans W. T. Mayhall, Jr. and John Read, and Democrat Bobby Shows. The bill, which is likely dead on arrival, proposes that the state’s Department of Health establish weight criteria after consultation with Mississippi’s Council on Obesity. It does not detail what penalties an eatery would face if its grub was served to someone with an excessive body mass index.

Let’s repeat that so you fully grasp what the bill is saying: They want to make it illegal for restaurants to serve you food if you are considered obese by the State government’s standards. In short, they want to turn every fast food joint and high-hifalutin bistro into the Food Police charged with the responsibility of not feeding you if you’re too much of a fatty. Apparently they think that you’ll just go home and start jumping rope if you can’t eat out as opposed to, say, going home and downing an entire tub of Ben and Jerry’s as comfort food therapy. 

Somehow I don’t think they have thought their clever plan all the way through.

47 thoughts on “Mississippi lawmakers want to ban fat people from eating out.

  1. Wow.  Whoever came up with that idea has never even been to the Mississippi Delta…probably never been out and about in Mississippi either.  If that law passed, restaurants would go OUT OF BUSINESS.

  2. I don’t really know what I think of this. On one hand obesity is not only connected to ones individual health it is also connected to the health of the planet, global starvation, the exploitation of third world countries, the meat murder industry. child abuse (as letting a young kid get fat is abuse) and probably more. Yet on the other hand I value individual freedom and am sick of the nanny state. Hmmm in the end I suppose my anarchist tendencies win out and I have to oppose such legislated stupidity. lol

  3. Hmmm…. Let’s see how will they measure obesity?  There’s the BMI, which is often wrong, then there’s the skin-caliper measurement, as least invasive.  More accurate, however, is the Near-Infrared Interactance measurement in which a beam of infra-red light is transmitted through the skin of the biceps. The light is reflected from the underlying muscle, and absorbed by the fat. Or, failing that, we could use the dual energy X-ray absorptiometry method in which two different types of X-ray scans the body, one that detects all tissues and another that doesn’t detect fat. A computer can subtract the second picture from the first one, giving only fat detection.

    Or, better yet, to avoid too much radiation exposure around the restaurant’s entrance, perhaps the State could do the measurement then stamp the back of your hand so you could get in.

    SG

  4. I’m sticking with my own idea, don’t let overweight people drive, then they have to walk to the restaurants smile  Saves gas, cleans up the air, gets people out and enjoying a brisk walk as they make for the state line to get the hell out of Mississippi….

  5. It’s just another way to remove the responsibility people have from themselves to something else. Why not create a well thought out and funded program to help teach people how to get in shape an eat right? Oh right… that would make sense.

  6. It’s just another way to remove the responsibility people have from themselves to something else. Why not create a well thought out and funded program to help teach people how to get in shape an eat right? Oh right… that would make sense.

    just like all smokers know how bad it is , most of fat people know how bad it is but food is addiction so if you want to cut down on drugs you seek punishment on drug dealers , not users and if you wana get rid of smoking you go down on producers of cigarettes and mot on users.
    seek passing laws for standard Nutrition conditions and qualities for sold foods an organized health department that sends agents to check on food producers food quality.
    some people associate food to emotional state just like others do with smoking , drugs , music , sports , video games , driving and even crime but as long as they are not hurting any one but them selves then it is a discrimination to their rights to do what ever they want with their most valuable property , their life.
    if you at some point find your life so miserable to live no one can take your right of ending it (if i was at a very late stage of cancer with no hope to live forward i wouldn’t hesitate to end the pain).

  7. Right, and nothing says “Shoot yourself now” like the State of Mississippi telling you that your ass is too big to go have a salad bar.

  8. According to Missippi based commenters on other blogs running this story, the bill in question in not to be taken seriously.  It was cosponsored by three smoking members of the legislature protesting a seriously proposed ban on smoking in public areas in the state.

  9. For all the suggestions about how to “combat obesity” how about we just chill the fuck out and let people live their lives! How cares if people are fat and what ever happened to the outlook that “fat is beautiful”?

  10. Duckhugger- I have mixed feelings about this.  Part of me says “yes, everyone’s beautiful, let’s not discriminate, live and let live”.  On the other hand, fat people die sooner, cost more in health care, and eat a lot, in a world where lots of people don’t have enough to eat.

    Not that poor Africans will automatically have more to eat if Americans go on diets.  No easy answers or judgements.

  11. That shit is just a pile of lies Zilch! You’re sucking up the bullshit with a straw!

    Fat people don’t always die sooner than skinny ones… it’s often possible for people with extra girth to outlive and be healthier than many skinny and emaciated little fucks! There have even been societies that have seen fat as the “picture of health” rather than skinny.

    Also, the issue of food. The supply in starving countries has nothing to do with “fat people eating the food”. Has a lot more to do with economic/poverty issues… being unable to grow or import the food properly… poor distribution of food… etc. Here in America we have an abundance of food, for sure! Sure some poverty-stricken people have troubles getting access to that food at times… but once agian, it’s not due to any fat boogie man snatching food from their pantries!

    You’re also ignoring the part about being fat that relies heavily on genetics! You know… it’s like… someone who is 6’5” takes up more space than someone who is 4″5… but should be make a value judgment for the smaller person because they “use less resources” or some shit?

    I question the science behind many of the studies that have come touting figures that show we all need to fall in step with the BMI and keep away from the dreaded “obesity disease”! In actuality I don’t think being “fat” should be seen as such a horrible thing and I don’t think we know how long someone will live or how healthy they will be just because of their body size!

  12. Let me guess, you’re a big fatass yourself, right Duck? Afraid that someone won’t let you have an extra piece of pie one day?

  13. Hmmm.  Duckhugger, you say:

    That shit is just a pile of lies Zilch! You’re sucking up the bullshit with a straw!

    Well, that has the advantage that I get all the juicy stuff, and leave the indigestible lumps behind.  In any case:

    Fat people don’t always die sooner than skinny ones… it’s often possible for people with extra girth to outlive and be healthier than many skinny and emaciated little fucks! There have even been societies that have seen fat as the “picture of health” rather than skinny.

    True, fat people don’t always die sooner than skinny ones.  And smokers don’t always die sooner than non-smokers, and soldiers don’t always die sooner than librarians.  But statistically speaking, fat people die sooner.  Quote:

    Illnesses caused by obesity are already shortening the average U.S. life by at least four to nine months—greater than the impact of car accidents, homicides and suicides combined—a first-of-its-kind analysis has determined.

    Within 50 years, if the trend is not reversed, obesity will cut the average life span by at least two to five years, which would exceed the effects of all cancers, the researchers estimated. That could overtake all gains from healthier lifestyles and medical advances and cause longevity to plateau or perhaps decline, they projected.

    Going on with your comment, Duckhugger:

    Also, the issue of food. The supply in starving countries has nothing to do with “fat people eating the food”. Has a lot more to do with economic/poverty issues… being unable to grow or import the food properly… poor distribution of food… etc. Here in America we have an abundance of food, for sure! Sure some poverty-stricken people have troubles getting access to that food at times… but once agian, it’s not due to any fat boogie man snatching food from their pantries!

    Didn’t say any different: “Not that poor Africans will automatically have more to eat if Americans go on diets.”  True, getting food to people who need it is a complex issue.  But, ignoring the fact that there’s no direct causality here, a lot of Africans could be fed on what Americans don’t need to eat.  I don’t claim to have any easy answers here, though.

    You’re also ignoring the part about being fat that relies heavily on genetics! You know… it’s like… someone who is 6’5” takes up more space than someone who is 4″5… but should be make a value judgment for the smaller person because they “use less resources” or some shit?

    Didn’t say otherwise.  But how heavily obesity is related to genetics is moot- and the fact that the rate of obesity is skyrocketing in America is anything but genetic: it’s purely a cultural phenomenon.  Or are fat genes suddenly more successful for some reason?

    I question the science behind many of the studies that have come touting figures that show we all need to fall in step with the BMI and keep away from the dreaded “obesity disease”! In actuality I don’t think being “fat” should be seen as such a horrible thing and I don’t think we know how long someone will live or how healthy they will be just because of their body size!

    I’m not advocating legislation or discrimination against fat people.  I’ve had my bouts with chubbiness myself.  I also have friends who are quite a bit overweight.  But simply saying “fat is beautiful” ignores the fact that it’s unhealthy.

    Most important: every one of my “fat” friends would rather be less fat.  Shouldn’t we encourage them to do something about it, rather than just simper about how beautiful they are?

  14. The way most of the world “encourages” fat people to lose weight is usually pretty fucking heartless and cruel. People should really just mind their own fucking business when it comes to weight matters. Treat everyone as a valid and worthwhile person regardless of what they weigh… realize that fat can be just as attractive and sexy to people as skinny/trim bodies!

    Yes, I am fat myself… and it does run in my family. My father has been wresting with his weight all his life and I have to say I watched him hurt himself over and over with all kinds of diet programs and medical procedures. While I do wish I could get more exercise (something that’s hard to do thanks to a work-related back injury) I’m not going to torture myself just to get my weight down like my father did! Actually, I often wonder if it’s my staying away from diets that is responsible for me not being quite as overweight as he was when he was my age. The diets always did seem to exacerbate his weight!

    I think it’s time society accept fat people and give them the fucking dignity of being human beings with feelings, emotions, sexuality, etc…  Making fat people feel bad about who they are and herding them into the claws of the diet industry is just going to do more harm! I honestly wouldn’t be surprised if so much of the “weight problem” we have in America is found to be hand-in-hand exacerbated by the supposed “cures” that America loves to push onto it’s heavier citizens.

  15. So…let’s summarize:

    You’re fat. It hurts your feelings when people notice that you’re fat. You wish you were attractive like healthy people. [insert excuse here], so you can’t change anything like other fat people who have became healthy.

  16. I think it’s time society accept fat people and give them the fucking dignity of being human beings with feelings, emotions, sexuality, etc…

    I’ll agree with you there, Duckhugger.  And obviously “encouraging” someone to lose weight by telling them that they have a “problem”, or that they are not “as good” as skinny people, is not only wrongheaded, but it’s not going to help anyone.  I don’t bring up the subject with my fat friends, but when they talk about it, I tell them my opinion: they would be happier if they were less fat.  And they agree.

    But where do you draw the line?  Hard to say.  Me, I’m grateful if my wife tells me not to eat that extra dessert.

  17. LOL I love it when people use Bullshit as a source! It basically tells me that they are too lazy to do any real leg work to find credible sources so I don’t really have to take them serious.

  18. That shit is just a pile of lies Zilch! You’re sucking up the bullshit with a straw!

    dude am fat but it doesn’t need all that aggersive reaction so face it , our over-wight problems may kill us sooner , we are no better than smokers because we chose to be fat and it wasnt a trait that we were born with.

  19. Mister Mook, you’re an ass. It just pisses me off to see so many people making self-righteous value judgments about fat people.

    I certainly don’t wish I was like a skinny person. I really find “skinny” to be pretty damn unattractive and sickly looking.

    I’m actually down with the fact that I’m fat… not only that, I think fat is attractive and sexy. I really love bellies and the soft squish of chubby skin. So much of society would tell me that I’m “fucked up” or “gross” for asserting these things. I just say to them, “fuck off! I like what I like!”.

  20. dude for one your medevil taste sucks but any way no one jugged any one from the way they look we as fat people and skinny people are in an unnatural and unhealthy state that might lead to own death, at the other hand extremely sporty people have this huge flow of hormones that makes them so animalisticly emotional not to mention the high possible injuries during extensive training so the best thing is to be fit in between, a normal healthy human with no big piles of mucels or fat and with no bones showing off under their skin.
    Imagen your self as your cave men ancestor and try to calculate the amount of effort you have to put in hunting to get your food and match the equation to your daily diet.

  21. m.wael alkel, have you ever seen babies? Those little larval fuckers are pretty chubby and rolly-polly dude! Most of ‘em anyways… so yeah, not born with it my ass!

    It seems like the process that leads to one’s weight is a mix of both genetic issues AND choices… not just one or the other. Still, if someone chooses not to fight and toil against their genetics proclivity towards being fat… is that so wrong? Do we need to treat these people like disgusting gluttonous pieces of human trash because of this?

    I’ve definitely seen instances of some people have an easier time staying thin than others despite bad eating habits and it also shows that some people can eat less than some skinny people and still become overweight.

  22. is that so wrong?

    yes if that would lead to their death.

    some people have genetically oriented disabilities , some are born without arms for example who would force every one to admire them when they challenge their condition and defeat it (I saw a guy in college assembling a fucking too dam complicated circuit with his feat, I admired him) and on the other hand there is people who give it up and the force people to despite them (I was standing in the food line in the college cafeteria and some slut passed over my feet with her wheel chair saying cant you see idiot and ignored the line, I despited her)
    being genetically oriented fat isn’t just an appearance trait like being black or white, tall or short; it is an illness because there is no healthy fat man.
    so if yu are eating right and exercising right and your aren’t losing weight, you should go and see a doctor because you might have a hormone disorder that might lead you to a heart attack one day.

    Do we need to treat these people like disgusting gluttonous pieces of human trash because of this?

    no we don’t, these people are so ignorant that they hate any thing different than them, in the term of religion , race , nationality , gender , appearance , etc… but i am sure mistermook didn’t mean to discriminate any one like that, he was only trying to seed motivation but if you were right and he meant to discriminate other for the way they look (which I doubt) then fuck him…

  23. This asshole sounds like he’s related to the asshole in Virginia who introduced a bill to ban Truck Nutz (plastic nuts that dangle from a truck’s trailer hitch). 

    He wanted to ban them because his daughter saw a pair and asked what they were.

    rearview.jpg

    http://www.trucknutz.com/

  24. True. There are some people whose weight problems are a symptom of an underlying medical issues. But come on! This whole fat acceptance movement is just pure denial. The majority of obese (i’m talking about OBESE, not just slightly overweight) people make bad decisions about what to eat. The other day I saw an obese woman at the grocery check-out. ALL of her food was highly-processed, high in sugar JUNK food.  There wasn’t a single vegetable, fruit, or lean meat in her cart.  So let’s stop the bullsh**t. You are what you eat. If you only eat junk food and sit in front of the dummy tube all day, then you will be FAT. Unless you have a medical condition, the calories you put in your body need to be offset by the calories your body expends. This is just another example of people not taking responsibility for their own actions and playing the poor victim.

  25. And what about all those skinny fuckers out there who gorge themselves on highly processed sugary junk food. I’ve known people like that who don’t gain any weight on no matter what they eat… then there’s the fat folks I know who eat healthy diets with good intake of fruits and vegetables, and yet still wind up being fat.

    It’s not as simple as everyone wants to make it… and it’s disgusting for you shits to ASSUME that people are fat just because of what they eat and then make fucked up value judgments on how worthy they are as a person!

    Just accept people and accept that fat people have existed throughout time and will CONTINUE to exist. Learn to live with these people and possibly even see the value in them. Being shrill about their eating habits or calling them irresponsible is not going to make them any thinner!

  26. Just accept people and accept that fat people have existed throughout time and will CONTINUE to exist. Learn to live with these people and possibly even see the value in them. Being shrill about their eating habits or calling them irresponsible is not going to make them any thinner!

    Duckhugger, no one here would disagree with you.  But obesity is a public-health problem, and a growing one.  And there’s no reason to believe that it is growing because there is more genetic predisposition to obesity: it’s almost certainly growing because more and more people are eating more junk food, and exercising less and less.  Should nothing be said or done, for fear that someone might be offended?  Should children who overeat simply be “accepted”, and not be encouraged to learn better, healthier, habits?

    As I said, there are no easy answers.  What do you suggest be done, Duckhugger?

  27. What would I suggest? Well first off I would say that I’m pretty suspect of the “growing health problem” of obesity and the diet industry that seems to back up and support this “research”. I also think that a lot of the diet solutions that have been pushed forward to people have negative effects on people’s health and well being.

    I think it would be much better to stop looking at weight as a sign of one’s health. As a society we should instead look towards providing cheaper healthy options in food often times it’s hard to go for the healthier options in food if it’s out of one’s price range!

    We should also pass laws against and eliminate the diet industry since they promote unhealthy and imbalanced ways of looking at food intake.

    From there we should try to promote living healthy to EVERYONE and not just single out “fatties” as targets for sermons on health. At the same time, however, that health advice should be balanced and realize that health and weight are more complicated than just a simple equation of “fat = unhealthy / slender = healthy”… there are many ways where a heavy-set person can be much healthier than someone of average or skinny weight.

    We really just need to step back and stop obsessing over whether or not we’re “FAT” and just focus on the issue of health and well-being for society as a whole in more complicated and nuanced ways!

  28. Well first off I would say that I’m pretty suspect of the “growing health problem” of obesity and the diet industry that seems to back up and support this “research”.

    You keep conflating these issues just as the boys at Bullshit do. The growing health problem of obesity comes from science. Whereas the bullshit of the diet industry comes from… well bullshit. The diet industry cares about one thing and one things only, selling bullshit. Which is why you have countless numbers of crap and weight loss items, as well as pills, shakes, and on and on. The idea of obesity comes from medical research, studies, peer reviewed information, and just from looking at the number of fat assess that walk into an office day in and day out.

    The two are completely separate. If you need me to waste time looking up 1000s of studies for you on weight loss, obesity, and the issues associated with both let me know. I might care.

    If you actually want to attempt to change your ideology read the book You: The Owners Manual. It was written by two doctors that got a team of researchers together and poured through and analyzed over 10,000 studies to bring together the most complete and accurate information possible. So unless you consider science bullshit, I would tend to trust their opinions and data reported.

    We really just need to step back and stop obsessing over whether or not we’re “FAT” and just focus on the issue of health and well-being for society as a whole in more complicated and nuanced ways!

    What this really says is that we should not listen to science or peer reviewed data and instead accept your pet idea.

  29. Webs, you act like there is a total scientific consensus out there on the issues, which there is not! The issues surrounding obesity are pretty complicated with several studies that I’ve read through myself contrasting in findings depending on what they look at and how they look at the issue.

    There was a study I recall reading from the American Cancer Society and National Institute of Health that showed that DIETING is actually behind more death than obesity itself.

    I’m sure there could be some marked health benefits for people to slim down depending on how overweight they are, sure… then again… by harassing fat people and berating them about it you’re likely going to just prod them into unhealthy dieting regimes!

    From witnessing what happened to my father as he was pulled through the ringer of failing diets, I stand by my opinion that the dieting industry itself is an epidemic we need focus on doing away with above and beyond obesity itself!

  30. Obesity a problem?  Yep.  Diet industry a profit-driven problem?  Yep.  Some people could eat an entire cow every week and not gain an ounce?  Yep.  But until you’ve lost forty or fifty pounds, it’s difficult to imagine how tough it can be.  And my knees are telling me that I better not weigh this much next year.

    It is important to build lean muscle mass, even if you do it under a layer of fat.  And to get enough aerobic exercise.  Got to work those lungs, move that blood.

    Important note: the younger you are, the easier it is to be smug about weight.  Metabolism slows down as you get older.

  31. There was a study I recall reading from the American Cancer Society and National Institute of Health that showed that DIETING is actually behind more death than obesity itself.

    Again who said anything about dieting. If you read the research or the book I listed above or talk to a nutritionist you would know that A) obesity is dangerous and leads to many curable ailments and diseases B) caloric restriction is the way to go. I would never disagree that dieting is dangerous, but I have yet to propose that as a solution.

    by harassing fat people and berating them about it you’re likely going to just prod them into unhealthy dieting regimes!

    No one is harassing you. You came here with your conspiracies about how the whole science of medicine is out to get the fat people.

    You stated on this thread:

    That shit is just a pile of lies Zilch! You’re sucking up the bullshit with a straw!

    I question the science behind many of the studies that have come touting figures that show we all need to fall in step with the BMI and keep away from the dreaded “obesity disease”! In actuality I don’t think being “fat” should be seen as such a horrible thing and I don’t think we know how long someone will live or how healthy they will be just because of their body size!

    So don’t play the “Poor me I’ve been mistreated card”. It aint gonna work.

  32. I think fat people should be prodded. Hell, if we piss you off enough maybe it will burn off that extra cheeseburger you ate for lunch and give you another month of living.

  33. How did this become about harassing ME Webs? Re-read my comment there… I’m talking about the continual harassment that society shoves towards fat-people throughout their lives… the snickers, rude comments, and general disdain handed down often from peers, teachers, parents, random strangers, etc…

    I’m not out to get sympathy for me. Honestly, although I’ve gained a good amount of weight as I’m getting older… I’ve never really ever been that fat. I actually used to be somewhat skinny when I was a kid up until I was put on medication that effected my metabolism. I’m also sure beer has played a part in my older years now.

    What I’m pushing forward here is that there are kids that I grew up around and people I know now as an adult who are much heavier than me and have suffered due to it… but not as much from “health effects” as from pricks out there who see them as justified targets of ridicule. If anything I’d like to see people treated well and given respect as human beings despite their weight or body type. When it comes down to it, there are so many types of bodies out in the world. It would be good if we focused on the positive points of these bodies rather than always trying to pick out the negative.

    Heath consciousness is one thing… but using that concern as a tool for justifying further degradation and taunting of the overweight is another.

    P.S. – Mistermook… didn’t eat a cheeseburger today, let alone an “extra” one. I ate a bowl of rice and a salad. God you’re a fucking prick!

  34. You still fail to grasp the situation here. You come in mouthing off to everyone telling us how we’re assholes because we don’t allow your fat ass to raise our health care costs. Then when we tell you to go to hell or shut up you claim victim. And use the poor me defense. No ones buying it and your wasting your time.

    Peace out!

  35. Webs… looks like you’re the one failing to grasp the situation. You’ve totally got my argument mis-characterized right and left. I use personal examples, but the argument isn’t about ME!! I’m speaking to the larger issue of fat-acceptance vs. narrow minded bigots who hide behind medical studies in order to toss out hatred and simple-minded misconceptions!

    Also, did you fucking miss the post that Les put up about the study showing how fat people cost health-care LESS than skinny folks?

  36. No, it’s about you. The way you’re getting all defensive about the whole discussion? It’s all you. I don’t believe you when you say it’s about other people. I think you’re a liar.

  37. No one is saying that fat people deserve less dignity or respect as a human being (or at least i’m not), but I do think the fat acceptance movement put forth by authors like Marilyn Wann is unwise.  The volumes of VALID medical and scientific studies that link obesity with other diseases like diabetes, high blood pressure, sleep apnea, arthritis and stroke should be heeded and not swept under the carpet just to save someone’s feelings. Just because someone has a genetic predisposition towards obesity, it is not something that can’t be changed. It just takes a little more discipline than it would the person with a faster metabolism.  People say some alcoholics are genetically predisposed to drink, but it doesn’t mean that they shouldn’t TRY their damnedest to stay away from it (even if it is much harder for them).  And yes, if you do eat healthy foods in proper portions, and expend energy moving and you are still obese, then everyone else can go to hell, right?  Unfortunately, there are too many obese people who use genetics as their excuse and just say, “oh, what can i do? It’s in my genes, so i might as well eat this burger and fries and milk shake, etc”  That is what’s dangerous about fat acceptance. It’s the fatalism of that line of thought that’s dangerous.

  38. Yes Maddie… but THEY should make the decision to lose weight if they want to and we shouldn’t try to make it into a “DO IT NOW FATTIE!!” kind of thing (that so many obviously do). The only good pushing at fat people about this stuff will do is to make them take on unhealthy diets that will likely just make them worse off.

    If anyone is going to lose weight it’s going to be a very slow moving and long process of subtle changes to habits and lifestyle. In the meantime they still have years ahead that they will be overweight. In that period of time, we should accept the fact that they’re going to be fat and accept them as people.

    I also see nothing wrong with making flattering clothes in their sizes either. Once again, making all the good looking clothes out of their size range is going to just push them to get fatter and worse off through the boomerang effect of “instant diets” or what have you!

    This whole time I haven’t said anything about “Oh fat people can’t help it so they might as well gorge themselves on tubs of greasy McDonalds foods”. Rather I’m urging that we focus on promoting “HEATH” and healthy eating in general without worrying or singling out people for their fatness. There are some people, even with better diet and lifestyle, that will still be fat… but they can be healthy and fat… get what I’m saying?

  39. Bullshit. While I disagree with the methods on a personal level myself, no one can argue that punitive taxation, public scorn, and medical penalties haven’t done a bang-up job on making people quit smoking in the last decade. Maybe if fat people had to eat their donuts outside in the rain and snow while the public got a nod to proclaim their disgust for their filthy habits they’d grab a carrot and hit the exercise bike a little. “Healthy and Fat” is a cop-out, like “light” cigarettes.

  40. You have a childish view of the situation MisterMook. Unlike giving up smoking and drinking (two things which aren’t needed for survival) people do have to eat! It’s also shown that most dieting tends to result in a person losing weight and gaining more back then they started with… not to mention what a hard toll it takes on your body when you lose a large sum of weight at once.

    Public scorn and making the world a place that doesn’t accept fat people pushes people into these kinds of situations. It’s NOT going to make them THIN or even healthier!!

    Like I said, the healthy route to weight loss takes subtle adjustments in adopting a healthy lifestyle… but meanwhile these people will have years (and possibly the rest of their lives) of being fat… or at least somewhat chubby in the slow process.

    During this process It’s very essential that we don’t prod them towards unhealthy “get thin quick” plans that will wind up just making them fatter in the long run! So do you see how focusing on just a general public policy of healthier lifestyles for EVERYONE instead of singling out fat people might be good?

  41. As a woman still trying to lose her pregnancy weight after 13 years, I’ll weigh in on this topic…

    Since we had to give up our YMCA membership, the whole family has gotten chunkier.  We were doing pretty well – strength training was definitely helping with my fibromyalgia, pounds were dropping slowly, as they should, etc.  But we could no longer afford $70 a month, especially since our eating habits had gotten healthier (fattening food is cheap, lean cuts of meat and sufficient quantities of fresh fruits and vegetables cost a lot more).  You could say “go outside and get some exercise”, but we’ve been having long stretches of temperatures that barely make it above zero (we’re in Minnesota), and there’s just so many laps you can take around your apartment.  On “warmer” days I walk outside, but have a bad habit of falling (knee problems – they give out sometimes; strength training was helping).  I walk the skyways as much as possible before work and during lunch, but that doesn’t help much. 

    The husband has finally finished with school, and is searching for a job as we speak – hopefully somewhere warmer (I told him anywhere but Texas.  Been there, no sir, didn’t like it).  We know we need to be in better shape, but unfortunately all those programs and aids cost an awful lot.

    No advice, no complaints, we know what we need to do, and what we are supposed to do, and what we can do.  We go to restaurants once a month – if that.

  42. Public scorn and making the world a place that doesn’t accept fat people pushes people into these kinds of situations. It’s NOT going to make them THIN or even healthier!!

    Public scorn didn’t do much for hardcore smokers either. The public just waited them out and they died sooner than later. No, the trick is that scorn eventually has a peer pressure effect on kids – and in this case that’s a good thing.

    You can try to parse it as many times as you’d like that I’m just being a mean ass to you, but the simple fact remains: No one wants to be fat. No one is healthier being fat. Fat is not better than not fat.

    Social engineering isn’t pretty, but dismissing its effectiveness just it hurts feelings is bullshit. You don’t coddle people into radical changes in their lifestyles, they won’t be able to change under any circumstance but coddling them just eases the pressure to change.

  43. Just to weigh in on this topic (I’d laugh, but the pun isn’t that funny, and I’m not the only one on here to use it)… this is especially directed at the exchange between MM and Duckhugger. This is kind of a ranty topic for me, so.. yeah. Head’s up.

    These changes to diet, exercise, and everything else, are not necessarily subtle. In some cases, they cannot be effectively implemented subtly. I had to completely rearrange my priorities to accommodate a healthy lifestyle. No amount of doing that slowly or gently in any way affects the fact that you have to change your life around.

    That’s what it takes. Don’t let anyone tell you otherwise. If you’re not sleeping properly, exercise doesn’t help nearly as much, and diet will suffer. Without a proper diet, exercise is more or less useless. Without exercise, your diet and sleep won’t be regulated. It’ll be as important what you eat, as how much you eat, how often you eat, and when you eat.

    Getting back to a healthy lifestyle, for me, was, and is, as simple as a question of values. I can be in poor shape, have low energy or desire to get anything done, be generally unproductive… OR I can do something to improve on that.

    MM’s straight up on this point – there is nothing to be proud of in being unhealthy, and nobody is going to convince me, that hasn’t been leading a very healthy lifestyle for several years, that their being fat isn’t completely their fault. You can go ahead and euphemise it and say “Oh, I’m just curvy” or make some faux-historical reference about how women “weren’t all sticks” back in the day. You can talk about how “my family did X” or that “society made me fat” but you know what? You’ve always had the option. And you still have the option. For almost everyone, it’s a matter of what’s more important, and what you’ll sacrifice to accommodate this.

    I never make guarantees that when you get healthy that you’ll be a stick – but you’ll the be best you can be. And if you really love yourself and give a damn about your welfare, that’s what you’ll want. It’s what’s important, because you can’t say you love yourself and treat your only body like crap.

  44. you can’t say you love yourself and treat your only body like crap.

    I don’t know about that, when I see some of the people who are out there married I can see an argument that people have an extraordinary capacity for self-abuse in the name of love. That’s what peer pressure is good for: Telling people who try to hide behind “It’s alright, it’s just different” that “No,  it isn’t.”

  45. What must also be remembered is that while it is not always body fat that causes the problems, many of the foods that cause fat gain are in themsleves unhealthy- high sugar, high salt, low fibre etc, so in may people ‘fat’ is a flag to bad diet.

    Duckhugger- there are more fat people in the US and UK than there were 20 years ago.  That isn’t anti fat, that is fact.  There enough proper scientific studies to make the links between obesity and a number of health problems.  This isn’t just a medical cost problem, there are knock on effects, such as work related days off.

    Yes there are naturally fat people. However these are not going to be that much more common in the last 20 years.  The fat kid at school was often the loner- now many kids are overweight.

    Much of the problem lies with US junk food- studies in the rise of heart problems etc show as the US lifestyle becomes prevalent in a country then health problems associated with eating burgers etc become prevalent- I believe this is particully noticable in Japan.

    My wife struggles with her weight, part due to problems in the pregnancy of our youngest, yet she knows that she has to make the effort, as weight has exacerbated the conditions- especially the diabetes.  Her diabetes has actually led me to realise what a con much of the diet industry is.  Diet means ‘low fat’- whatever that is- but on reading the label you find the products are often high in sugar. (Full fat milk – ‘BAD’- 4g fat per 100ml.  ‘Diet’ products’ ofthen advertise as only 5% fat! Oh so more fat than ‘unhealthy’ milk then)

    The major problem is that convenience food have made us lazy- not in the going to the gym sense, but in the put it in the microwave sense.  Convenience foods are highly processed, meaning the body digests them quickly, with fats and sugars added to make them more tasty.

    A book on GI diet helps with sorting out good and bad foods.  Originally written to help diabetics, they show which foods are digested slower, thus helping you feel fuller longer.  GI isn’t a diet- there are no associated products as with Heinz WeightWatchers, except for those jumping on the bandwagon- it is a food lifestyle. 

    Eat less processed food- wholemeal bread rather than white- especially loaves with ‘bits’ in, which I prefer anyway.  Bowl of porrige in the morning.  You will feel less tired for longer.

    Walk rather than take the car- there is no reason to drive a mile or less if you can find 15minutes extra (Ok I don’t expect you to go on the weekly shopping run on foot, but you know what I mean)

    I realise in the northern states/Canada etc this might not always be an option, but you can see where I’m going.  Even silly things like take the stairs not the lift.  If you work on the 132nd floor at least do a few flights from ground level- any difference of 3 floors or less there should be no need for the lift.  I’m 39, take no ‘gym’ exercise, and can still beat a lift up 3 floors- ok you may not be able to do it (I am really puffed by the end)- I’ve been racing elevators since I was 8, but at least do some of the work modern life has taken away.

    DON’T OVER DO THINGS- You will put yourself off, and it may be dangerous.

    Even if you don’t lose much weight you will at least help your heart and arteries.

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