Sunday, February 24, 2013

Define "Overweight"

I am 5’ 6”.  I have what one would call a “medium frame”.  According to a typical online healthy height-weight chart, I should weigh between 130 and 144 pounds.  But I weigh more than that.  In fact, at my lowest weight in the last ten years, I still weighed more than that.

I bring this up because of this article I recently read.  It said that two-thirds of Americans adults are “overweight” or “obese”.  But it also said that recent studies indicate that “people in the government’s ‘overweight’ category actually have a lower chance of dying prematurely than those of normal weight.”  And other studies are coming in with similar findings.  The article closes with the thought that it might be time to adjust the labels.  If “overweight” is supposed to mean that you need to lose some weight to be more healthy, the labels may not be very accurate.

Ve-e-errry interesting.
I know I’m not the only one who has walked through an art museum and noticed that the standard for physical beauty in women has changed dramatically over the centuries.  Most of those lovely nudes in those old Renaissance paintings are downright FAT by today’s standards.  They would be lucky to even be considered as a model for plus-sizes.  It seems our expectations of what a beautiful body looks like have changed over the years, and probably not for the better.
Not that I’m saying we don’t have a fat problem in America.  We do.  There is no doubt about it.  I have a fat problem.  But I also think we need to be realistic about the goals we set.  And perhaps weight needs to not be the focus here.  I find that when I’m worried about my weight, I get nowhere.  When I’m worried about being healthy, then I lose the weight, too.
The holistic doctor I saw a while back about my sleep problems taught his patients that 50% of the food they eat at any meal should be fruits or vegetables.  Oh, yeah.  That would do it.  Let’s get a veggie obsession, everyone.

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