Ever had that moment when someone has tentatively said to you “Ever thought about losing a little weight?” and, scowling and red-faced replied, “I just can’t, alright!!”
Well, good news. According to new research, it could be genetic – so don’t worry about it!
There is a new stance emerging – “Fat Acceptance Movement”.
Thinking “hey I think I’ve heard of that before…” but with no idea where? Nope, it wasn’t on that (now empty) tub of Ben and Jerry’s, nor was it scribbled on the bottom that take-out menu. You may have heard of it in passing while listening to the news or the radio, perhaps even on a heath or fashion TV show, (that’s right, they mentioned it on a couple of those recently!) but never really discussed on its own. I predict this will change very soon.
So Where Has This Idea Come From?
It stems from the Government. The idea is that governments are moving on from the stance that all overweight people can be helped back to a healthier size; apparently it all genetic! They are now entertaining the idea that they should instead focus on changing societal view of fat people to be less discriminatory.
I’m all for changing negative social stigma so that it isn’t directed at people. Stigma would be far better attached to negative things instead; a recent example would be the possibility of a law being passed to force cyclists to wear helmets – stigmatising this could save lives without needless laws being passed. (Amol Rajan discussed this in the i on Friday, link HERE)
However. I think this might be a tad ridiculous.
Yes, there are people who are naturally heavier build, same goes for some thin people – that’s just the way you are built. But there is a big difference between being big boned and being obese.
Obese people have made the choice to let their weight get out of control, therefore, their health problems are their own responsibility. Same goes for super thin people. This “fat acceptance” nonsense seems like the government are saying it’s too big a problem (excuse the pun) and are giving in a little.
This seems like an excuse for overweight people to say “I’m just going to accept that I’m too big and do nothing about it – it’s genetic! The Government even says so!” It seems lazy and like quitting.
But Isn’t Changing the View of Society the First Step Toward Changing the Individual?
Changing the social attitude towards fatness is not going to do anything to change the actual weight of the people or improve their lives in the end. It may mean that there is greater acceptance of the eve-expanding waistline of the nation, but that isn’t really a good thing if people are still unwell because of it.
It just means that, when you are lying in hospital having broken you leg while tripping on your run, and see an obese 28 year old in for a quadruple by-pass, the old guy on your left being treated for diabetes won’t shake his head and complain about how parents should educate their kid better – he’ll nod with a look of sympathy and ask you about your leg.
It is people’s best interests to say fit and healthy, which is why it is necessary to fight your genes and say no, I will not give in and eat that chippy/Chinese take-out/burger as well as that tub of ice-cream/cake/deep fried mars bar, every day of the week. (No sane person would ever say NEVER, coz, I mean, c’mon, take-out is the best thing ever… 😀 )
It’s all down to making healthier choices and receiving encouragement – not giving up and saying, know what, you go ahead and munch your way to ill health, we have no idea what to about it anymore.
Try harder, Mr. Cameron, or everyone’s favourite Mayor may just take-over… 😉