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Does your region affect your attitude toward weight/health?

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  • lemurcat12lemurcat12 Posts: 30,886Member Member Posts: 30,886Member Member
    sawyeram wrote: »
    The Midwest - Food is also a priority here but it's not the whole foods that I was used to (like fresh from the garden veggies). People use instant potatoes rather than real potatoes (ugh, the horror). Kids aren't taught to eat a variety of veggies . . . or any veggies for that matter. People don't cook homemade meals here they eat out or eat from a box.

    This is 100% not my experience of the midwest. We always ate fresh food and vegetables when I was growing up (however, we ate canned when we lived in AK for a while, for obvious reasons). My grandparents in IA had a huge, lovely garden, and their idea of a perfect snack was home-dried fruit or, for special occasions, fruit pie, made at home. Birthday cakes and so on were normally homemade. Sure, we ate meat and potatoes (and a veg), and not the fried and delicious specialties that the South is known for -- but fresh and wholesome, yes. Going out to eat was rare, and my mother would have thought she'd be judged harshly if we didn't eat our vegetables or didn't have a home cooked meal (even though she now admits she dislikes cooking).

    Today, I see similar things among my friends, including those with kids and in my neighborhood (which has a very low rate of obesity), except that the potatoes aren't as prominent, the vegetables are more exotic on average, and people eat out somewhat more, but not fast food normally, more likely local spots and a lot more ethnic cuisine (when I was a kid people ate "American" or "Chinese" or "Italian").

    I live in Chicago, which is certainly the midwest, and specifically on the north side. There are communities and neighborhoods with serious obesity issues here, although on average the ones most likely to have close and recent connections to the South (and also problems like food deserts and poverty).
  • King_SpicyKing_Spicy Posts: 823Member Member Posts: 823Member Member
    Yes, my region is a huge influence.

    I grew up in a city populated by fast food and 7-elevens. The majority of the people I saw walking around were overweight. While I was still motivated by the military to exercise and keep in shape, I still ate whatever the hell I wanted. Midnight trips to taco bell or WaWa? Yes plz. Chinese takeout to cure my drunken hunger? Most definitely.

    Now I live in a city that barely has any fastfood. You have to go out of your way to find it, in fact. But it is filled with delis and healthy restaurants. Almost all of the people are active and in shape. Even the senior citizens keep active and in shape. The biking and running scene is huge. There is a gym attached to every apartment building, and public gyms on every other block. There are probably one or two handfuls of crossfit gyms as well in the immediate area. Now I'm less motivated to exercise, since I no longer have the workout buddies I did in the Marines, but I am definitely motivated to eat healthy and keep up my appearances.
  • senecarrsenecarr Posts: 5,377Member Member Posts: 5,377Member Member
    I found this article, from 2012, interesting the poor Flint, MI was having health issues even back then:
    http://www.livescience.com/18886-obese-cities-list-2011.html
  • echohansenechohansen Posts: 15Member Member Posts: 15Member Member
    I live in California (Bay Area) and there's definitely a huuuuge pressure to be thin and "bikini-ready," but I think the standard is gradually becoming more health conscious and about fitness rather than waist size. Personally, I think it is also a social thing - you get people humble-bragging about how they're going gluten free or vegan or no carb etc. There is definitely a socioeconomic divide too because I mean how many people can subsist entirely on groceries from Whole Foods (which for some reason people think is necessary to be healthy)? While I think people are slowly starting to care more about exercise and eating cleaner and healthier, I know a lot of it is just for show, so you can tell people you eat healthy. Hopefully that becomes the norm not just for bragging rights at the beach, but for health reasons too!
    edited April 2016
  • ninerbuffninerbuff Posts: 42,532Member, Greeter Member Posts: 42,532Member, Greeter Member
    Environment impacts your health and weight. As well as the company you keep.

    A.C.E. Certified Personal and Group Fitness Trainer
    IDEA Fitness member
    Kickboxing Certified Instructor
    Been in fitness for 30 years and have studied kinesiology and nutrition

    9285851.png
  • serenityfryeserenityfrye Posts: 339Member Member Posts: 339Member Member
    I'm from Kansas and notice a definite difference based on income level and proximity to the heart of the city. In the rural area where my home is, people have less wealth and tend to be overweight. The culture is one of sweatpants and mcdonalds and television because that's what people can afford and what there is 'to do.' Heading into the city where I take my kids to school there are a plethora of trendy health clubs, trendy healthy restaurants and trendy tiny-size boutique shops. Most of the folks I see are fit and muscular put a lot of effort into their appearance (networking is important in the city too). So definitely a cultural thing I think as well as what is available (although one can get in shape without trendy gyms of course).
  • solieco1solieco1 Posts: 1,279Member, Premium Member Posts: 1,279Member, Premium Member
    Yes. I was born in the deep south and grew up there. Since then I've lived in several US states and Western Europe. I live in Colorado now. Being in a place where so many people are always up for a ride, hike, run and eat healthy is a great environment. Yes, its on you to find the answers you seek to make yourself live healthily, however, environment is a factor.
  • DearestWinterDearestWinter Posts: 595Member Member Posts: 595Member Member
    I noticed this when I went back to grad school in my mid 20s. Although I moved to a new region I think the change in my friend circle was the influential factor. In my old town I had been the small one in my friend group. (High BMI was 24.9, so not quite overweight but borderline.) When I started grad school and was surrounded by a bunch of skinny students I was suddenly the heavy one. That's when I took notice and began working to lose some weight.
  • senecarrsenecarr Posts: 5,377Member Member Posts: 5,377Member Member
    senecarr wrote: »
    I see worn out haggered women all the time going way over top because of eating out. I just prefer not to exercize just so i can eat more..

    I thought you were supposed to be a dancer, at least that is what I assume from what you have chosen to call yourself, and the several times I have seen you post about ballet. Now you say that your only activities are housekeeping. Very interesting. Generally when 25-year-olds identify as dancers they are in the studio several times a week, working en pointe, and are ballerina-ripped with lean muscle that take hours and hours of extremely challenging work to maintain.

    Dancing isn't exercise. o:)

    Dancing is art,sport and exercize. If your not already aware Dancers have some very decent calorie burns. I do not know where you are from senecarr but where I come from it is but better than that it is an enjoyable pasttime for all ages young and old.

    Where I come from?
    enhanced-buzz-32332-1338585204-16.jpg
  • senecarrsenecarr Posts: 5,377Member Member Posts: 5,377Member Member
    What is this senecarr? I didn't realise you were this petty that you would let a debate become as ridiculous as telling people that dance is not exercize-especially when mfp has it on their database?

    Hey. I've danced. It definitely elevated my heart rate:
    dance_dance_revolution_42642_6294_1.jpg
  • troutlillytroutlilly Posts: 44Member Member Posts: 44Member Member
    I'm from the Twin Cities in MN and there are a lot of health-conscious people here. At one point we were known to be a powerhouse for hipsters, so yeah there's a lot of healthy food eating folks and active people :)

    I've experienced some level of resistance to weight loss and balanced eating. In the past, coworkers tried to discourage me from losing weight despite the fact I was still overweight and wasn't close to "skinny." People have tried to discourage me from getting thinner, but look askance when someone thinner wants to lose weight. That situation happened at a workplace one time, and it really irked me because clearly my weight was unhealthier due to body type.

    After joining a fitness class, I've come across more people aiming to lose weight for health reasons and to enjoy physical activity. It seems common in the Twin Cities. When my husband and I drive away to visit his parents in WI where it's rural, the difference is obvious. A lot of people, especially women, are overweight to obese. Losing weight there is more discouraged and I've nearly had arguments with my MIL about how I am NOT skinny. She tried to make it a big deal one time and acted like she was freaking out. I decided the best thing to do was dismiss her reaction. Normally she is more balanced about things but that bothered me.

    Where my ILs are from, people believe a salad is shredded iceberg lettuce with shredded cheese, drowned in ranch dressing. Where my husband and I live, people believe a salad has spinach, kale, tomatoes, and can be eaten with vinaigrette. It's definitely a cultural and regional difference.
  • tomtebodatomteboda Posts: 2,176Member Member Posts: 2,176Member Member
    troutlilly wrote: »
    Where my ILs are from, people believe a salad is shredded iceberg lettuce with shredded cheese, drowned in ranch dressing. Where my husband and I live, people believe a salad has spinach, kale, tomatoes, and can be eaten with vinaigrette. It's definitely a cultural and regional difference.

    My parents and grandparents call iceberg lettuce with shredded cheese and copious dressing salad. They're all from MN. And it IS a salad. It might not be your favorite salad, but it is a salad.

  • French_PeasantFrench_Peasant Posts: 1,631Member Member Posts: 1,631Member Member
    I see worn out haggered women all the time going way over top because of eating out. I just prefer not to exercize just so i can eat more..

    I thought you were supposed to be a dancer, at least that is what I assume from what you have chosen to call yourself, and the several times I have seen you post about ballet. Now you say that your only activities are housekeeping. Very interesting. Generally when 25-year-olds identify as dancers they are in the studio several times a week, working en pointe, and are ballerina-ripped with lean muscle that take hours and hours of extremely challenging work to maintain.

    Assuming just causes issues. I used to dance, I hardly have the time, and the only exercise I do is a Class in Solo seal every so often. I probably burn about 500 but I never count it. I am too busy as a stay at home mum to be worried about all that.

    I was mainly just curious about the "worn out haggard woman" you see "all the time" going all-out with the exercise. Ballet is a great example: with multiple weekly classes and preparation for performances, I can't even imagine the calorie burn for a ballet company dancer, let alone a professional, and I couldn't even imagine describing these women as haggard, even with children, even at an older age, despite the grueling regime that starts at a tender age. My daughter's ballet teacher was in her 80s and the words I would use to describe her are "poised, elegant, graceful, gracious, strong."
  • French_PeasantFrench_Peasant Posts: 1,631Member Member Posts: 1,631Member Member
    What is this senecarr? I didn't realise you were this petty that you would let a debate become as ridiculous as telling people that dance is not exercize-especially when mfp has it on their database?

    He is just teasing, hence the angel icon. He know that dancers in the US are actually like this:

    pxjijrnwruxy.jpg
  • senecarrsenecarr Posts: 5,377Member Member Posts: 5,377Member Member
    What is this senecarr? I didn't realise you were this petty that you would let a debate become as ridiculous as telling people that dance is not exercize-especially when mfp has it on their database?

    He is just teasing, hence the angel icon. He know that dancers in the US are actually like this:

    pxjijrnwruxy.jpg

    Nope. I mean it. Literally no one ever has ever burned calories moving in rhythm to music. It's weird - rhythmic, repetitive movement? Clearly exercise. Add music - calorie burn immediately stops. That's why they made chain gangs whistle while they work - it let them feed the prisoners less.
  • RWClaryRWClary Posts: 192Member Member Posts: 192Member Member
    No, absolutely not!
    My attitude toward my health is a constant, and the people herd can do whatever.
    I have found that internal motivation is stronger than external influence.
  • troutlillytroutlilly Posts: 44Member Member Posts: 44Member Member
    tomteboda wrote: »
    troutlilly wrote: »
    Where my ILs are from, people believe a salad is shredded iceberg lettuce with shredded cheese, drowned in ranch dressing. Where my husband and I live, people believe a salad has spinach, kale, tomatoes, and can be eaten with vinaigrette. It's definitely a cultural and regional difference.

    My parents and grandparents call iceberg lettuce with shredded cheese and copious dressing salad. They're all from MN. And it IS a salad. It might not be your favorite salad, but it is a salad.

    It's not a nutritionally dense, healthy salad. That's what people act like it is, and it's not. It's like people I worked with proclaimed "I'm eating a healthy meal today," and I find out it's chicken drowning in ranch dressing with green beans from a can doused in salt. Nowhere close to healthy.
  • French_PeasantFrench_Peasant Posts: 1,631Member Member Posts: 1,631Member Member
    troutlilly wrote: »
    tomteboda wrote: »
    troutlilly wrote: »
    Where my ILs are from, people believe a salad is shredded iceberg lettuce with shredded cheese, drowned in ranch dressing. Where my husband and I live, people believe a salad has spinach, kale, tomatoes, and can be eaten with vinaigrette. It's definitely a cultural and regional difference.

    My parents and grandparents call iceberg lettuce with shredded cheese and copious dressing salad. They're all from MN. And it IS a salad. It might not be your favorite salad, but it is a salad.

    It's not a nutritionally dense, healthy salad. That's what people act like it is, and it's not. It's like people I worked with proclaimed "I'm eating a healthy meal today," and I find out it's chicken drowning in ranch dressing with green beans from a can doused in salt. Nowhere close to healthy.

    Are your coworkers also your in-laws? Sounds like you are in the same milieu in the Twin Cities or in rural Wisconsin.
  • troutlillytroutlilly Posts: 44Member Member Posts: 44Member Member
    troutlilly wrote: »
    tomteboda wrote: »
    troutlilly wrote: »
    Where my ILs are from, people believe a salad is shredded iceberg lettuce with shredded cheese, drowned in ranch dressing. Where my husband and I live, people believe a salad has spinach, kale, tomatoes, and can be eaten with vinaigrette. It's definitely a cultural and regional difference.

    My parents and grandparents call iceberg lettuce with shredded cheese and copious dressing salad. They're all from MN. And it IS a salad. It might not be your favorite salad, but it is a salad.

    It's not a nutritionally dense, healthy salad. That's what people act like it is, and it's not. It's like people I worked with proclaimed "I'm eating a healthy meal today," and I find out it's chicken drowning in ranch dressing with green beans from a can doused in salt. Nowhere close to healthy.

    Are your coworkers also your in-laws? Sounds like you are in the same milieu in the Twin Cities or in rural Wisconsin.

    LOL, no they aren't. When coworkers have looked at my lunches they tend to say "oh, my lunch is healthy too!" They get super enthusiastic about it and at the time it seems mean to burst their bubbles.

    I have to bite my tongue too, because I've been told "how are you losing weight and I'm not and we're eating the same way?" Um.
    edited April 2016
  • kshama2001kshama2001 Posts: 19,790Member Member Posts: 19,790Member Member
    robininfl wrote: »
    Yikes, the "Instant Potatoes" line grabbed my attention. The Fiance grew up all over the world but formative years in Virginia, and I remember his kids asking me for "mashed potatoes from real potatoes" like it was haute cuisine. He had always made them from the dehydrated flakes, I'd never made them from anything except boiled or baked potatoes. They had to LEARN how to make them. I was like "you mash the potatoes. It's in the name."

    We grew up with food food food but almost nobody very fat in my family, one guy out of about 50 of us, extended. Parents from New Orleans, and I live in a culturally diverse city with a lot of restaurants. We Like Food. The city is about half at least somewhat overweight, half not overweight, which I think is average.

    And yes, Food is love and family.
    sawyeram wrote: »
    I've had exposure to two completely different regions. I'm born and raised in the south and 5 years ago moved to the Midwest.

    The South - Food is love and family. Food is a reason for people to gather. There's no low fat, low sugar, low calorie option when it comes to Southern food and that is the very reason why it tastes so good. We enjoy it and savor it but there is a balance of food with activity. In the South you go outside to hike, camp, swim, play sports, play with your cousins, build a treehouse, ride your bike, hunt, run, walk, etc . . . Southerners are active and while they may not be at the correct medical weight on the BMI scale they have the strength and the endurance to rival any athlete. Southerners tend to be larger people overall but you have to be to wrestle a bull or tip a cow. :smiley:

    The Midwest - Food is also a priority here but it's not the whole foods that I was used to (like fresh from the garden veggies). People use instant potatoes rather than real potatoes (ugh, the horror). Kids aren't taught to eat a variety of veggies . . . or any veggies for that matter. People don't cook homemade meals here they eat out or eat from a box. Here's a couple examples: For my daughters 10th birthday party I rented a room at a hotel with an indoor pool (I always choose a location where the kids can be active and have a lot of fun). We swam first for 3 hours and then took a break to eat. I had purchased a Subway sandwich platter with half turkey half ham sandwiches with lettuce and tomato only. Seven out of ten girls removed the veggies from the sandwich and one informed me that she doesn't eat salad. I told her it wasn't salad it was lettuce. She didn't even know the name of lettuce!!!!! my other example. I'm driving my son (15) and his friend (16) to the skating rink and I hear them talking about food. I hear the friend say that he doesn't like eggs. I'm surprised because being teenage boys they scarf down breakfast like they're starving. I told him I though he liked them since he eats them when he's at our house. He agrees he does like them, at our house but that because his parents can't cook very well. He informs me that he eats everything at our house because "ya'll can cook!" We cook 90% of our meals at home and rarely eat out, other people here don't do that. The people here also have one of the most sedentary lifestyles I've ever seen. No one goes outside, the athletes at my sons school are out of shape and the ones that aren't overweight are skinny fat (no muscles). He's a freshman and is stronger than all the seniors. In gym class, my daughters gym teacher wanted them to do crunches ... no one (other than my daughter) knew what it was. What is going on here???

    This reminds me of when I served a friend's adult children red leaf lettuce. They'd only ever seen iceberg and thought the lettuce was spoiled.
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