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Thread: Obesity myth

  1. #61
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    Quote Originally Posted by Alwar View Post
    Anyone who doesn't believe obesity is an issue in the US hasn't had the dubious pleasure of walking through Walmart on the weekend.
    Seriously.

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    Quote Originally Posted by 01011010 View Post
    Seriously.
    Or even working at grocery store in West Virginia. We have a particularly high number of obese people in this state.

    On the bright side, it's made me more health-conscious.

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    I think these are a few things that are very likely to be myths;

    • If Obese people live a moderate lifestyle, the excess weight will just fall off
      (I believe living outside of your natural metabolic range is incredibly hard)
    • Obese people are naturally normal sized people that gorge to excess
      (probably some are but I think it takes a tremendous amount of eating and sloth to stay that far out of your metabolic range, beyond most people and probably quite an effort)
    • That there is a "normal" weight range that every individual should fit no matter what their frame, body shape, metabolism, muscle mass and genetics are
    • That the process of turning a very obese person into a normal weight person is always beneficial
    • That there is no genetic link in obesity or that the genetic link is insignificant when it comes to keeping weight off (when your fighting your genetic makeup your always battling uphill)
    • If everyone ate the same and exercised the same we would all be the same size


    I think it's a myth that all obese people are living abnormal lifestyles (the very obese/super obese is a different story), I think most people in the west live typical western lifestyles, it's just that many of those people don't have the genetic privilege of being able to hide the results of living the typical western lifestyle. Like Oberon said I think refined carbohydrates are a big problem in our diet, and most people of all sizes are guilty of eating too much of that.

    When it comes to risk factors there are increased risks for some illnesses that come with being obese but there are also some decreased risks for other things, so it balances out in a way. There are also increased risks for some illnesses from being underweight and "normal" weight as well. So it seems that being in the "overweight" range while still exercising and eating well is a good way of hedging your bets.

    We all seem to accept that there can be skinny people that no matter how hard they try just can't put the weight on yet we don't accept as easily that there may be obese people with the same problem going the other way.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    No, it makes perfect sense that obesity in and of itself would increase risk of heart failure. The human heart is suited to supply a certain number of blood vessels over a certain area. The area and number of blood vessels go well over the adapted amount when a person becomes obese, so the heart has to hustle 24/7. Also, the whole added weight thing produces sheer stress on the body. This is a reason that fat people tend to get winded way faster. It takes much more force and energy to move that mass around. The pressure itself is condusive to heart attacks.
    Isn't regular exertion of the heart a good thing for it? Isn't that why we do jogging, to get your heart pumping hard? In an obese person the heart has to pump blood further, therefore getting a "workout" without having to run miles? I think I heard this somewhere, that their heart can actually be strong and more prepared for later life, do you think that's a possibility?
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quinlan View Post
    Isn't regular exertion of the heart a good thing for it? Isn't that why we do jogging, to get your heart pumping hard? In an obese person the heart has to pump blood further, therefore getting a "workout" without having to run miles? I think I heard this somewhere, that their heart can actually be strong and more prepared for later life, do you think that's a possibility?
    For working-out to provide physical benefits, you have to pace yourself. Being obese is an endless work-out. And for the record, a lot of people that work-out to the extreme do die of heart attacks, even in the middle of doing it.

    Generally, you should be spending more of your life regenerating than strengthening yourself. If it tips the other way, than you're just killing yourself.

    EDIT: Also, even if they were in the same intervals, I wonder if exercise could ever simulate the effects of operating an obese body.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    EDIT: Also, even if they were in the same intervals, I wonder if exercise could ever simulate the effects of operating an obese body.
    That makes me feel even more compassionate for them.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quinlan View Post
    That makes me feel even more compassionate for them.
    I have the notion that being compassionate toward someone who is obese would involve helping them lose weight. I tend to include among compassion a desire to keep people from debilitating and killing themselves.

    EDIT: I ommit suicide in cases of extreme, uncurable pain, and things of that nature.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Magic Poriferan View Post
    I have the notion that being compassionate toward someone who is obese would involve helping them lose weight. I tend to include among compassion a desire to keep people from debilitating and killing themselves.

    EDIT: I ommit suicide in cases of extreme, uncurable pain, and things of that nature.
    That extends to people of all sizes, I see people living unhealthy lifestyles of all sizes, so of course I would want to see them take better care of themselves but I won't assume that just because someone's BMI creeps over 30 that they're all of a sudden killing themselves (and weren't when they weighed a Kg less).

    I would encourage an obese person to eat well (small amounts often and to avoid refined carbs and sugars), I would also encourage them to exercise regularly BUT if they did that and the weight still didn't fall off them, I wouldn't push them harder to lose the weight (especially if all other indicators of health were good). Anyway our attempts to "help" often does nothing more than exasperate the problem (or cause other ones).

    I have been thinking about this recently, I think that "weight loss" is actually used by public health officials as the carrot on the end of the stick to get people in general to eat less and exercise more, I think they know that the goal of being "slim and beautiful" is much more motivating than the goal of "reducing risk factors for health problems in the long term". I think that health officials have at times fallen on the side of idealogy and manipulation rather than honest informing of the facts.
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    You can't get fat without eating the Calories and not using enough energy to get rid of them. Some people might be born with the habit of eating more and exercising less maybe. But body-wise, I'd think anything but lack of muscle to burn it wouldn't make much difference from person to person. I saw my friend drop 10kgs from just substituting Coke for sugar free Coke, and making sure Calories stayed within a certain range. He didn't even stop eating fast food or exercise. And similar things are probably where Americans get their obesity from. They probably think they won't eat food with fat, but then load up on sugar or something else. Like Coke can get you there on its own. And walking isn't that energy consuming as exercise, so if you live in a country where you never move faster than walking pace, you probably don't use much energy to counter it. Also some get self-conscious about being fat, then go out less, eat more, and get fatter. Genetic differences would keep people at different ends of the sensible range at the most. Obesity requires something extra.
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    Quote Originally Posted by Quinlan View Post
    That extends to people of all sizes, I see people living unhealthy lifestyles of all sizes, so of course I would want to see them take better care of themselves but I won't assume that just because someone's BMI creeps over 30 that they're all of a sudden killing themselves (and weren't when they weighed a Kg less).
    The BMI 30 is an arbitrary cutoff. Risk of cardiovascular disease is nearly as high with BMI of say 29.

    I would encourage an obese person to eat well (small amounts often and to avoid refined carbs and sugars), I would also encourage them to exercise regularly BUT if they did that and the weight still didn't fall off them, I wouldn't push them harder to lose the weight (especially if all other indicators of health were good). Anyway our attempts to "help" often does nothing more than exasperate the problem (or cause other ones).
    Contrary to popular beliefs... It's actually how much you eat and exercise as oppose to what you eat that leads to weight gain. Of course here in this case I'm not refering to cardiovascular diseases... for that you should avoid high salt and fatty diet. Refined carbs and sugars themselves don't tend to do much according to clinical RCTs. This only makes sense because the body can convert all forms of fats, carbs, proteins to simple sugar... and from simple sugar back into fat for storage. Complex starches are helpful mostly in diabetic patients with difficulties maintaining consistent blood glucose. Not so much for the rest of us.

    I have been thinking about this recently, I think that "weight loss" is actually used by public health officials as the carrot on the end of the stick to get people in general to eat less and exercise more, I think they know that the goal of being "slim and beautiful" is much more motivating than the goal of "reducing risk factors for health problems in the long term". I think that health officials have at times fallen on the side of idealogy and manipulation rather than honest informing of the facts.
    See the problem here is not with the health officials... but rather how to explain something to the general public in the most effective manner to see results. Most people don't have the background in health science to understand nor are they willing to spend a lot of time find out about research findings. Instead they rely on the news. News only sells when its segmented into little spoonfuls, else the viewer/reader/listener gets bored and goes do something else.

    So what is the most simplified thing you can tell people? Simply that obesity is bad news...

    Quote Originally Posted by noigmn View Post
    You can't get fat without eating the Calories and not using enough energy to get rid of them. Some people might be born with the habit of eating more and exercising less maybe. But body-wise, I'd think anything but lack of muscle to burn it wouldn't make much difference from person to person. I saw my friend drop 10kgs from just substituting Coke for sugar free Coke, and making sure Calories stayed within a certain range. He didn't even stop eating fast food or exercise. And similar things are probably where Americans get their obesity from. They probably think they won't eat food with fat, but then load up on sugar or something else. Like Coke can get you there on its own.
    Exactly! See, if we're still hunter and gatherers, then obesity will no longer be a problem. People are built for a more active lifestyle than what most of us are getting in the current day and age. Fat storage and our likes of sugars and fat is build for surviving periods of famine or starvation... since we don't have that any more... people become overweight.

    About magic's point on exercises for the obese... if you force somebody/anybody to suddenly exercise more than they're used to. You'll stress out their hearts... For people with coronary obstruction (and this is not just limited to fat people), you can get a sudden heart attack... or angina in mild cases. Fat people in general do more work walking around than the rest of us do while walking. Their hearts are working much harder just to walk... imagine if they have to climb stairs or something... more stress = dangerous.

    Excuse my rant.
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