The holiday eating and drinking frenzy is often followed by a solemn oath to eat more healthy in the new year. Some of us step on the scales with fear and trepidation. The scales, to most of us, is not our friend. We step on it with one eye closed hoping that the number we see will be exactly what we want it to be.
If I said that the general population finds obesity offensive would you be surprised? Would you be surprised that being overweight is every bit, if not more, discriminated against as race or sexual orientation? Would you believe that this person:
is more offensive to most people than this person?
Each of these people have value and worth. Each of these people have feelings. Each of these people are humans created by a Higher Power. Each of these people have serious health issues. For the most part, only one of them will get sympathy and the other will get criticism. Notice the “www.funnypic.com” words on the picture of the obese woman. What is she doing that is funny? She is merely doing the same thing that another person at any gym may be doing, but since she is “fat” it is funny. I want to say kudos to her for getting up and being more active. For the most part, only one will get “advice” from well-meaning friends and relatives to adjust their weight; the other will more than likely be told (if more clothes are on to cover the obvious) that “I wish I was thin like you.”
As Americans, we are obsessed with the idea that we can not be “too rich or too thin.” Americans value thin despite the fact that we are probably the most overweight people in the world. Maybe we should be more concerned with trying to get as healthy as we can instead of what may or may not be aesthetically pleasing to others. In my humble opinion, weight loss should never be driven by how it makes us look but by how it makes us feel when we are at a healthy weight for our body. Weight loss should be driven by a desire to live as optimally as possible throughout our whole life.
Although I have not been on the extremes of the spectrum, I have been on both sides. I have been overweight and I have been thin. I have been told how much better I would look if I would just lose a little weight and I have been told that “I wish I was as thin as you.” Rarely did people tell me to gain or lose weight because of health; those that did cared about me and not what I looked like.