In this country we are obsessed with obesity. As the article states: we have an obesity epidemic. HBO (Weight of the Nation) states: Obesity in America has reached a catastrophic level.
In reality, we do not have an obesity epidemic. Actually, the catastrophe and epidemic is the food. By focusing on obesity and not the food, we have taken the wrong fork in the road. The question we must ask is: "What is the cause and effect?" From my perspective, we can draw a direct line from our horrific food environment to disease. Unfortunately, because it takes many years to experience the negative effects of eating the Standard American Diet (SAD), we concentrate on obesity.
Obesity is very visual, interesting, and fascinating - think Biggest Loser. Addressing food is boring and controversial. When well-intentioned people make recommendations to reduce the consumption of soda, sugar, fast-food, junk food, processed food, packaged food and more, the name-calling begins. They are labeled the food police And, we are reminded that it's all about personal responsibility. After all, personal responsibility is the American way.
One important thing to note: If we changed our lifestyle - stop smoking, eat better, and exercise - upwards of 90% of type 2 diabetes, 80% of heart disease, and 60% of the cancers would disappear. One other thing would go away too: our health care dilemma.
The heavy concentration on the obesity epidemic reminds me of the Street Light parable. So, next time the obesity issue raises its ugly head, let's think in terms of the food.