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Thoughts on the “glamourizing/normalizing” obesity vs body positivity conversations

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  • kimny72
    kimny72 Posts: 16,012 Member
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    AnnPT77 wrote: »
    kimny72 wrote: »
    I'm not seeing anything where overweight or obese people are telling those with mental illnesses that they need to "get over it" so they can be safer. I think you're heavily personalizing public health messages. Which I get, this whole thing has been frustrating in many different ways, but I don't think seeing this as an obese people versus mental illness thing is warranted. To begin with, there is overlap between these two categories!

    In discussions I've had, I've seen a lot of overlap between the people who tell anyone who is negatively affected by the lockdowns to "get over it," and the people who get offended when you suggest that people should take more personal responsibility for their own health before asking others to sacrifice for them. I'm not implying that anyone who holds these beliefs is obese, or anyone who doesn't hold these beliefs is not obese. (Ironically, I have several friends who are overweight/obese and agree with me about the obesity/COVID/personal responsibility thing.)
    I get that you don't understand how anyone can be overweight. It's a common thing, but I promise you that logistical and mental obstacles to weight loss exist, including a lack of information about how CICO works or not understanding how to effectively implement it into one's life.

    I never said that I don't understand how anyone can be overweight. I just gave an entire paragraph of reasons why I think people stay overweight. I just said that I don't think lack of access to information is the reason. 20 or 30 years ago, sure, it was a lot harder to find information back then, maybe that would have been a factor. But today, the information is out there, free and available. If someone doesn't look it up, it's because they don't want to know.

    And again, regardless of what the reason is why people keep gaining weight, is it not the government's job to fix this public health crisis? Why are governments and our society in general enabling the obesity crisis instead of trying to fix it? If the answer actually is just lack of knowledge, that would be a pretty easy fix, wouldn't it? Why aren't there huge billboards with this information everywhere, the same way there are billboards everywhere about wearing a mask or social distancing?

    There's a ton of information on weight loss out there and a lot of it is conflicting.

    I think someone can be overweight AND think it's an issue of importance and still not be sure how to proceed. Or maybe they know how to do it, but implementing consistently is an issue. I guess what I'm saying is that I don't see this as an us/them issue and I don't think it's a consequence of fat being glamorized.

    Daily here, we encounter people who know what to do and aren't quite sure how to do it (given the circumstances of their lives or particular emotional issues). There are also people who know what they want to do, but have inaccurate ideas of how it needs to be done that are either setting them back or causing them to spend energy on controlling irrelevant factors. We're in a society that makes it incredibly easy to consume more energy than our body needs. I can understand how some don't have grace to expend or don't want to expend grace, but I've been there and I think it's more complex than you're making it out to be.

    The corollation of obesity and a history of abuse, and of obesity with poverty, is stunning when you dig into it. The number of people in the US who don't have access to a primary care doctor, internet access, or a decent k-12 education as a result of poverty (either urban or rural) is also stunning.

    I listened to a podcast comparing access to broadband internet in the US to other industrialized nations and it blew my mind!

    As a consequence, I suspect that overweight/obese people are over-represented in the "essential worker" or "meet the public" workforce, when it comes to those outside strict total-PPE health care settings, especially. That appears to me to be true, based on the people in those jobs that I see around me, but I know that my eyesight's not a statistical sample.

    I wonder if something like that could also play a role in over-representation of overweight/obese people among those dying of Covid in the US? There's IMU some evidence that higher viral load (loosely, getting more viral bits on/in you when exposed) relates to more severe cases of Covid. It would be interesting to know if those in essential/public-facing/low-PPE jobs are dying at disproportionate rates from the virus.

    As someone mentioned above, I don't expect to see those more refined statistical analyses for quite a while yet, to explore questions like that, there currently being fatter fish right now for epidemiologists and their statistician buddies to be frying.

    Yep, that's the kind of thing I was thinking of earlier when I said there's a correlation but they don't know for sure the cause. It seems logical that the obesity itself puts you at some kind of disadvantage, but until doctors find a clear physical mechanism for why, there's no way to know if it is primarily physical or a smaller factor.

    It's the same with how hard the virus is hitting the black community in the US. Is it because more of them are essential workers still spending all day in public? Is it because they are more likely to be obese? Is it because they are more likely to get poor medical care? Are they more likely to live in densely populated areas? Take public transportation? Is there another condition those with recent African heritage are genetically predisposed to that hampers their ability to fight off the virus?

    Anyway, I hope we get these answers at some point, and I hope folks out there who are obese get the message that there are myriad reasons to get to a healthy weight as soon as possible, both for them personally and for society in general.
  • AnnPT77
    AnnPT77 Posts: 33,066 Member
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    kimny72 wrote: »
    AnnPT77 wrote: »
    kimny72 wrote: »
    I'm not seeing anything where overweight or obese people are telling those with mental illnesses that they need to "get over it" so they can be safer. I think you're heavily personalizing public health messages. Which I get, this whole thing has been frustrating in many different ways, but I don't think seeing this as an obese people versus mental illness thing is warranted. To begin with, there is overlap between these two categories!

    In discussions I've had, I've seen a lot of overlap between the people who tell anyone who is negatively affected by the lockdowns to "get over it," and the people who get offended when you suggest that people should take more personal responsibility for their own health before asking others to sacrifice for them. I'm not implying that anyone who holds these beliefs is obese, or anyone who doesn't hold these beliefs is not obese. (Ironically, I have several friends who are overweight/obese and agree with me about the obesity/COVID/personal responsibility thing.)
    I get that you don't understand how anyone can be overweight. It's a common thing, but I promise you that logistical and mental obstacles to weight loss exist, including a lack of information about how CICO works or not understanding how to effectively implement it into one's life.

    I never said that I don't understand how anyone can be overweight. I just gave an entire paragraph of reasons why I think people stay overweight. I just said that I don't think lack of access to information is the reason. 20 or 30 years ago, sure, it was a lot harder to find information back then, maybe that would have been a factor. But today, the information is out there, free and available. If someone doesn't look it up, it's because they don't want to know.

    And again, regardless of what the reason is why people keep gaining weight, is it not the government's job to fix this public health crisis? Why are governments and our society in general enabling the obesity crisis instead of trying to fix it? If the answer actually is just lack of knowledge, that would be a pretty easy fix, wouldn't it? Why aren't there huge billboards with this information everywhere, the same way there are billboards everywhere about wearing a mask or social distancing?

    There's a ton of information on weight loss out there and a lot of it is conflicting.

    I think someone can be overweight AND think it's an issue of importance and still not be sure how to proceed. Or maybe they know how to do it, but implementing consistently is an issue. I guess what I'm saying is that I don't see this as an us/them issue and I don't think it's a consequence of fat being glamorized.

    Daily here, we encounter people who know what to do and aren't quite sure how to do it (given the circumstances of their lives or particular emotional issues). There are also people who know what they want to do, but have inaccurate ideas of how it needs to be done that are either setting them back or causing them to spend energy on controlling irrelevant factors. We're in a society that makes it incredibly easy to consume more energy than our body needs. I can understand how some don't have grace to expend or don't want to expend grace, but I've been there and I think it's more complex than you're making it out to be.

    The corollation of obesity and a history of abuse, and of obesity with poverty, is stunning when you dig into it. The number of people in the US who don't have access to a primary care doctor, internet access, or a decent k-12 education as a result of poverty (either urban or rural) is also stunning.

    I listened to a podcast comparing access to broadband internet in the US to other industrialized nations and it blew my mind!

    As a consequence, I suspect that overweight/obese people are over-represented in the "essential worker" or "meet the public" workforce, when it comes to those outside strict total-PPE health care settings, especially. That appears to me to be true, based on the people in those jobs that I see around me, but I know that my eyesight's not a statistical sample.

    I wonder if something like that could also play a role in over-representation of overweight/obese people among those dying of Covid in the US? There's IMU some evidence that higher viral load (loosely, getting more viral bits on/in you when exposed) relates to more severe cases of Covid. It would be interesting to know if those in essential/public-facing/low-PPE jobs are dying at disproportionate rates from the virus.

    As someone mentioned above, I don't expect to see those more refined statistical analyses for quite a while yet, to explore questions like that, there currently being fatter fish right now for epidemiologists and their statistician buddies to be frying.

    Yep, that's the kind of thing I was thinking of earlier when I said there's a correlation but they don't know for sure the cause. It seems logical that the obesity itself puts you at some kind of disadvantage, but until doctors find a clear physical mechanism for why, there's no way to know if it is primarily physical or a smaller factor.

    It's the same with how hard the virus is hitting the black community in the US. Is it because more of them are essential workers still spending all day in public? Is it because they are more likely to be obese? Is it because they are more likely to get poor medical care? Are they more likely to live in densely populated areas? Take public transportation? Is there another condition those with recent African heritage are genetically predisposed to that hampers their ability to fight off the virus?

    Anyway, I hope we get these answers at some point, and I hope folks out there who are obese get the message that there are myriad reasons to get to a healthy weight as soon as possible, both for them personally and for society in general.

    The bolded is a particularly provocative issue, to me, espeically in context of the fact that Africa (as an overwhelming overgeneralization) so far seems to have had less severity/contagion than many people had expected at the start of all this. I don't I expect we'll tease out even refined, nuanced correlations for quite a while yet, let alone causes. Yes, there is less obesity in Africa. There are also lots of other differences, so I doubt the answers are as simple as bodyweight.
  • janejellyroll
    janejellyroll Posts: 25,763 Member
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    kimny72 wrote: »
    I'm not seeing anything where overweight or obese people are telling those with mental illnesses that they need to "get over it" so they can be safer. I think you're heavily personalizing public health messages. Which I get, this whole thing has been frustrating in many different ways, but I don't think seeing this as an obese people versus mental illness thing is warranted. To begin with, there is overlap between these two categories!

    In discussions I've had, I've seen a lot of overlap between the people who tell anyone who is negatively affected by the lockdowns to "get over it," and the people who get offended when you suggest that people should take more personal responsibility for their own health before asking others to sacrifice for them. I'm not implying that anyone who holds these beliefs is obese, or anyone who doesn't hold these beliefs is not obese. (Ironically, I have several friends who are overweight/obese and agree with me about the obesity/COVID/personal responsibility thing.)
    I get that you don't understand how anyone can be overweight. It's a common thing, but I promise you that logistical and mental obstacles to weight loss exist, including a lack of information about how CICO works or not understanding how to effectively implement it into one's life.

    I never said that I don't understand how anyone can be overweight. I just gave an entire paragraph of reasons why I think people stay overweight. I just said that I don't think lack of access to information is the reason. 20 or 30 years ago, sure, it was a lot harder to find information back then, maybe that would have been a factor. But today, the information is out there, free and available. If someone doesn't look it up, it's because they don't want to know.

    And again, regardless of what the reason is why people keep gaining weight, is it not the government's job to fix this public health crisis? Why are governments and our society in general enabling the obesity crisis instead of trying to fix it? If the answer actually is just lack of knowledge, that would be a pretty easy fix, wouldn't it? Why aren't there huge billboards with this information everywhere, the same way there are billboards everywhere about wearing a mask or social distancing?

    There's a ton of information on weight loss out there and a lot of it is conflicting.

    I think someone can be overweight AND think it's an issue of importance and still not be sure how to proceed. Or maybe they know how to do it, but implementing consistently is an issue. I guess what I'm saying is that I don't see this as an us/them issue and I don't think it's a consequence of fat being glamorized.

    Daily here, we encounter people who know what to do and aren't quite sure how to do it (given the circumstances of their lives or particular emotional issues). There are also people who know what they want to do, but have inaccurate ideas of how it needs to be done that are either setting them back or causing them to spend energy on controlling irrelevant factors. We're in a society that makes it incredibly easy to consume more energy than our body needs. I can understand how some don't have grace to expend or don't want to expend grace, but I've been there and I think it's more complex than you're making it out to be.

    The corollation of obesity and a history of abuse, and of obesity with poverty, is stunning when you dig into it. The number of people in the US who don't have access to a primary care doctor, internet access, or a decent k-12 education as a result of poverty (either urban or rural) is also stunning.

    I listened to a podcast comparing access to broadband internet in the US to other industrialized nations and it blew my mind!

    Yes, and I think these all overlap to make things harder. Lack of a primary care doctor makes everything about health care harder and it means you're probably not getting consistent messages about your weight and its impact on your health. Internet access makes it harder in general to get information about weight management. And poor education complicates any effort to deliver a baseline of health/nutritional information to young people (not that we do so great even with the kids getting decent schooling).

    The resources and information that a lot of us take for granted aren't available to everyone.
  • Theoldguy1
    Theoldguy1 Posts: 2,481 Member
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    Dnarules wrote: »
    There's a ton of information on weight loss out there and a lot of it is conflicting.

    There's a ton of conflicting information on the effectiveness of masks and social distancing, too, yet that's not considered to be an excuse for not wearing a mask or social distancing. People are supposed to "listen to the experts." So there's no reason why people can't listen to the experts when it comes to weight loss, too. Especially as the government and public health experts have way more consistent messaging on how to lose weight than they do on how to slow the spread of COVID.
    I think someone can be overweight AND think it's an issue of importance and still not be sure how to proceed. Or maybe they know how to do it, but implementing consistently is an issue. I guess what I'm saying is that I don't see this as an us/them issue and I don't think it's a consequence of fat being glamorized.

    Daily here, we encounter people who know what to do and aren't quite sure how to do it (given the circumstances of their lives or particular emotional issues). There are also people who know what they want to do, but have inaccurate ideas of how it needs to be done that are either setting them back or causing them to spend energy on controlling irrelevant factors. We're in a society that makes it incredibly easy to consume more energy than our body needs. I can understand how some don't have grace to expend or don't want to expend grace, but I've been there and I think it's more complex than you're making it out to be.

    If someone is on MyFitnessPal they're making an effort to lose weight and researching how to do it, so, they're not who I'm talking about. Those are people who are being proactive about their health and trying to be better. I'm talking about the people who aren't making any effort to lose weight, and/or even get offended at the thought that their obesity is a health problem, yet expect everyone else to sacrifice in order to protect their health.
    kimny72 wrote: »
    The corollation of obesity and a history of abuse, and of obesity with poverty, is stunning when you dig into it.

    The pre-existing conditions I have were also caused by childhood abuse. Yet apparently I have no right to expect anyone to accommodate my health needs, and should just "get over" having these health problems at all.
    The number of people in the US who don't have access to a primary care doctor, internet access, or a decent k-12 education as a result of poverty (either urban or rural) is also stunning.

    I listened to a podcast comparing access to broadband internet in the US to other industrialized nations and it blew my mind!

    You're seriously suggesting that the majority of cases of obesity in America are among people who have no internet access or education? Because that's not what I see. Plenty of educated and middle-class or richer people are obese. Here are some statistics from the CDC on the matter.

    https://www.cdc.gov/nchs/products/databriefs/db50.htm

    "Among men, obesity prevalence is generally similar at all income levels, however, among non-Hispanic black and Mexican-American men those with higher income are more likely to be obese than those with low income.

    Higher income women are less likely to be obese than low income women, but most obese women are not low income.

    Between 1988–1994 and 2007–2008 the prevalence of obesity increased in adults at all income and education levels."

    I don't feel like I'm sacrificing because of obese people. I actually don't even understand how one would think that. I'm sacrificing for everyone, and especially for the elderly.

    Obesity may lead to more severe outcomes, but it isn't causing this pandemic. This virus is wreaking havoc worldwide, even in countries with lower obesity rates.

    I don't believe anyone said obesity (or any other preventable lifestyle choice) is causing the pandemic. However, these choices make the outcomes worse.

    I feel there should have been more publicity on this angle.
  • Noreenmarie1234
    Noreenmarie1234 Posts: 7,492 Member
    edited January 2021
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    At first I was really against these, but then I read the article and I guess they are saying their mentalities are healthy because they are focused on how well their bodies can function and perform, not how they look. I am all for that, but I think if you focus on being the healthiest you are and love yourself you would lose weight to be the best you can be and healthiest you can be. Staying obese is harming yourself.

    I am just glad they didn't outright say "I am perfectly healthy and don't want to lose any weight" like Tess Holiday does.