When I was a kid, I was overweight. I ate a lot. Certainly more than I needed and, with it being the 1970s, nutrition was not much of a consideration and frozen TV meals had come in vogue. It took me a very long time to undo the damage that was done to my body during the first 18 years or so of my life and, even though I have retained a toned physique ever since, my skin in certain places isn’t as tight as it would be if I were never overweight; I have the ability to put on lots of weight very fast thanks to the extra fat cells that were nurtured and I carry the mindset of a fat kid. When I look in the mirror, I do not see what others might see looking at me, all I see are the wobbly bits, skin-folds and imperfections.
So it saddens me greatly when I see overweight children. Those who would have been considered a fatty when I was a kid would be considered normal these days; we were all skinny bastards by comparison. I see too many children who are already morbidly obese and it is both shocking and, in my mind, abusive.
Ignorance is no excuse. It wasn’t in the 1970s and it is less so today. There is so much information about health, diet and nutrition that there are few reasons to be overweight.
Excuses, excuses, excuses. Every fat person I have ever known – and I include my past-self in this – has a reason as to why their excess weight is not due to greed. Big-boned, slow metabolism, thyroid problems, ageing and so on.
Being very overweight will eventually create health issues in almost everyone. It could be respitory illness, cardiac problems, diabetes or a whole raft of cancers. The larger a person gets, the more strain the excess weight puts on the body. The skeleton was not designed to carry that much extra weight. The cardiovascular system cannot work fast enough to get oxygen around the body effectively. The heart is forced into strain to pump blood to vital organs. As the body fails, we are prescribed various drugs to aleviate – never fix – the symptoms. Those drugs, in themselves, cause side-effects. To combat these new symptoms, further drugs are prescribed.
Nearly all problems within the body can be fixed by losing weight. Got arthritis in your hips and knees? Lose weight and there won’t be so much pressure bearing down on worn joints. Got angina or other heart conditions? Give your heart a break by losing pounds so it can, literally, slow down a bit. People have even reversed a diagnosis of diabetes through dietry change, resulting them coming off their medication.
Fat children tend to become morbidly obese adults who end up immobile, dying early after living the previous 20 years of their lives on a cocktail of drugs designed to barely keep them ticking over. Their offspring learn the bad habits and repeat the cycle, passing it on to their own children.
Set an example. It is never too late to make a positive change. Commit to losing weight and enjoy the benefits of added mobility and increased healthfulness. Regain the ability to play your favourite sport or run around with your children or grandchildren. Getting older really does not have to be a struggle and losing weight can be easy. Of course, there will always be the exception and obese people love to talk about the jogger that dropped dead during a run. Yes, these sad stories do occur but, I promise you, far more people die from illnesses that can be directly linked to obesity than through exercise.
One thing I want to achieve with this blog is education. I will give tips and real-world advice on how the average person can take back control of their health – so check back often!