So, let's talk about why we're fat.
■ Normal weight or underweight (BMI under 24.9)
■ Overweight (BMI of 25 to 29.9)
■ Obesity (BMI of 30+)
■ Extreme obesity (BMI of 40+)
[According to this chart only 31.2 percent of adults in the U.S. were in the normal/underweight category in 2010. the rest were either obese or extremely obese. Precedence dictates these numbers have proportionally risen and will continue to climb unless we rip out the problems from their source.]
Did you know that in 2012 one in three children were considered obese? *According to the CDC* Yet we turn a blind eye. At what point did we deter from common logic and just accept obesity as a necessary evil rather than a disease? In 1990, obese adults were only 15% of the U.S population as opposed to the 69% prevalence of U.S adults making up the obese community today. Do these fatty facts transfer to other countries? Let's see!
This chart above shows the top 188 countries ranked from highest to lowest in obesity. The U.S comes in at an impressive 27th place as the most obese country in the world. We're behind a few pacific islands and a crazy amount of Middle Eastern countries. But 27th in the world is still quite abysmal, honestly. We've cured Polio before gluttony.
Even so, what exactly are the health risks that pertain to obesity? Could we possibly allow our children to be at dire risk for lifelong health complications? Duh, of course.
The National Institute of Health (https://www.wvdhhr.org/bph/oehp/obesity/mortality.htm) states that the fatalities caused by obesity make up the second most preventable leading cause of death (300,000 ghosts per year) in the U.S right behind tobacco. If you're in a room with five average Americans, 1 out of those 5 is statistically going to die due to obesity.
So who's at risk?
According to the Food Research and Action Center low income neighborhoods are at high risk because they often lack a grocery store with proper nutritional options and instead substitute nutrition for convenience with cheap and unnatural knockoffs of organic food. Poverty, genetics, race, and sometimes even luck can contribute to our growing obesity issue..
Provided by: http://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/health-statistics/Pages/overweight-obesity-statistics.aspx
So how do we stop an issue with so many variables? Awesome question!
According to the National Heart, Lung, and Blood Institute (http://www.nhlbi.nih.gov/health/health-topics/topics/obe/prevention)
- Follow a healthy eating plan. Make healthy food choices, keep your calorie needs and your family's calorie needs in mind, and focus on the balance of energy IN and energy OUT.
- Focus on portion size. Watch the portion sizes in fast food and other restaurants. The portions served often are enough for two or three people. Children's portion sizes should be smaller than those for adults. Cutting back on portion size will help you balance energy IN and energy OUT.
- Be active. Make personal and family time active. Find activities that everyone will enjoy. For example, go for a brisk walk, bike or rollerblade, or train together for a walk or run.
- Reduce screen time. Limit the use of TVs, computers, DVDs, and videogames because they limit time for physical activity. Health experts recommend 2 hours or less a day of screen time that's not work- or homework-related.
- Keep track of your weight, body mass index, and waist circumference. Also, keep track of your children's growth.
"But that all seems nebulous, right? If I could've done that I would've a long time ago." or "I just can't." Well, I've got something to tell all of you naysayers out there..
In the end, no matter how much you're pressed to eat healthy or body shamed by all those muscle freaks at the gym it's up to you what you do with your body. It's up to you! Make that step! Keep going and don't stop! Stand where the rest have fallen! Be the success story so your kids can look back on your life and say "Damn right my parent was a bad mother who did what needed to be done!" No amount of external motivation can push you off the couch. It's all in your head. It's up to you what you do with that dream.
Or you can be a statistic. Your call.
*Pie chart provided by http://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/health-statistics/Pages/overweight-obesity-statistics.aspx
*2012 obesity statistics provided by http://www.niddk.nih.gov/health-information/health-statistics/Pages/overweight-obesity-statistics.aspx
*1990-Current obesity rate: http://www.hsph.harvard.edu/nutritionsource/an-epidemic-of-obesity/