Blaming Obesity: 3 Reasons It’s Not Your FaultThursday, November 07, 2013 Mary Anne Velasco
In America, obesity is something we know all too well. We’ve witnessed the rise of the golden arches and “healthy fast food” options. We’ve watched shows like The Biggest Loser, and we’ve contrived every diet possible to combat the issue.
The obesity epidemic certainly seems to demand that someone or something is to blame. So it's important to take a look at few factors driving this oversized issue. To understand how obesity is not your fault, let’s determine some reasons worthy of blame. Here are a few of the major ones.
Convenience is King
That’s right. Convenience is more than an afterthought; it has become key for both consumers and businesses. Over the years, messages from businesses toward consumers have evolved to stress not only quality, but also convenience. This produced a focused emphasis on today’s fast-paced lifestyle – and this is hard to argue against.
According to a study done by cdc.gov, obesity prevalence among all fifty states is at least 20% or greater. It's reasonable to believe a portion of this number is due to the massive potential for consumption that's available for almost any product. The TV dinner, once an ideal for entertainment and togetherness, is now a social norm. From adolescence to adulthood, we're conditioned to make unconscious decisions on convenience.
In recent news, New York Mayor Michael Bloomberg banned the sale and consumption of 16oz soda containers. This is a prime example of the concern with convenience and consumption. If you're still wondering whether obesity is matter of your own doing, just keep reading.
What's obesity and who classifies who's obese? These are questions we all struggle with. The best parameters naturally revolve around South Park’s famous reiteration of Cartman's slogan, "I’m not fat, I’m just big boned." There's a correlation between obesity and genetics, one of the main reasons we can play the blame game.
To keep the issue's ambiguity in perspective, though, just try to define an athlete. As Joey Chestnut and Phil Mickelson enter your list, it’s clear to see the lines of obesity are just skewed. Defining the reasons for obesity is difficult; just consider the various studies involving asthma and obesity links, along with genetic factors, depression, and individual circumstances. When you combine all of this data, the actual causality seems to be almost incomprehensible.
We can’t help how we are born, so we can only work to improve it. We hear too much where the responsibility should lie and this is the chance to fight back. Being healthy and cognizant of your health risks far outweighs the varying classifications of what obesity is, however.
We Are Fighting The Fight
The public is aware of obesity -- a large proportion has been making conscious efforts over the last decade to take control. One of the main reasons we can blame obesity is because this issue requires a conscious community more than an individual effort.
Being committed to a program or style of living is a good start but outside factors share a huge influence.
For instance, when is the last time you bought something organic at the grocery store or made a visit to WholeFoods market? I’m sure you left noticing one thing, it’s expensive! Eating well is often predicated by time and cost. The food must be available at reasonable prices and other healthy options must make sense in our fast-paced society.
It’s important to arm yourself with an action plan if indeed you're facing this problem. The reason we're active in fighting this fight is due to several causes. Since 2007 we've seen the rise of the popular and competitive Crossfit games. This program has become a national craze along with other challenges like Tough Mudder that bring together a community of athletes, building success stories for people battling with weight and others simply looking for a challenge.
If you're looking for a way to get involved, find your local Crossfit chapter or search for any 5k walk/run race to participate in.
Our efforts in events like this are clear: When given the chance, people enjoy being active. The movement against obesity is happening as employers are offering more health/wellness programs, food chains are aware of the importance of these options and consumers are demanding these options.
The battle with obesity will continue for years and the conversations surrounding it will soon begin to change. The majority of people are making good decisions, and now more than ever, they're aware of the risks and actions for prevention. Have you ever taken the blame for being obese? Fight back in the comments below.