Tuesday, July 24, 2012

25 Signs That We Are Losing The War On Obesity

    As the war on obesity rages on there are more and more signs that the fitness world is losing the battle. At the time of this writing it is widely agreed that at the very least 1/3 of Americans are obese, with higher studies going up to almost double that, and some studies say the European population is even surpassing that number. But either way, it doesn't take a genius to realize we are getting fatter. Take a look at these 25 alarming statistics on weight gain in the world we now live in:

1. Prior to the 1990's fast food menu options to super size/giant size/biggie size were barely existent. Today most major food chains offer single meals that are the size of the USDA's total caloric recommendation for some people in the whole day.

2. Science will help us right? Wrong. The amount of people on prescription medications in the United States has increased at an alarming rate. It is estimated that within the last ten years the amount of Americans taking a prescribed drug at least once a month has increased up to 40%. This includes everything from diabetic medication, obesity control, and psych meds. All of which working out and healthy eating can help control.

3. How much sugary fluid do you need to survive? Some business must think a lot! 7-eleven brags on it's own site how it's Big Gulp is genetically engineered to quench any thirst. This sloth beverage can have up to 400 grams of sugar in one container!

4. With close to a 50 percent divorce rate (higher than it has ever been) is it any wonder that many people complain time and time again of loss of attraction to their partner secondary to weight gain as a reason for the break up.

5. Prior to the 1950's king size beds barely existed in our culture, today most couples do not feel they comfortably have enough space without a king size bed.

6. While most nations seem to get by with any motorized 2-4 wheel vehicle, here in the United States we need a bit more room. While in some countries SUV's and pick ups are reserved for construction jobs, big cars/trucks have become fairly common in the states and social stigmatized.

7. Diabetes is on the rise more than ever before. Some experts say that half of overweight teens at this point are at risk for diabetes as well as heart problems.

8. With the advent of the internet and the ease of getting information do you think we have become smarter with our purchases? Not quite, apparently these useless items are still on the market:

www.abs.thecontour.com   $179 for ripped abs!
www.shakeweight.com      Great shape in just 6 minutes!
www.thighmaster.net         Yep it's still around, need I say more?

9. In 1985 for those of us who were around we remember the launch of Nintendo. Since then there are now dozens of video games systems available to children, as well as internet games, cell phone games etc. Some studies have shown that playing too many video games can double a child's risk for obesity.

10. Think the government will help fight obesity? Think again, in 2011 our very own congress declared that pizza is a vegetable.

I've never seen a pizza plant, have you?

11. But if the government were to help, do you think people would be appreciative? Think again. In 2012 my former boss NYC Mayor Michael Bloomberg had put forth legislation banning large sugar soft drinks in hopes that people would drink smaller portions, people reacted with this protest.

12. The hardest part is, who can blame people for eating unhealthy, in one of the worst economic times of our lifetime, it is very hard to tell two parents who are both working and barely getting by to avoid things such as the dollar menu or value menu. It costs more these days to buy a piece of broccoli in the store with rising prices on health foods.

13. As we deal with this, we also must deal with time to prepare meals for healthy eating. Close to 8 million Americans have 2 jobs, a lot of us also now work longer hours, with longer commutes. Time is important, and for some people, grilling a piece of chicken is not always an option. Future article on cooking for time management coming soon.

14. Just how much soda do we drink? It is estimated the average American drinks 50 gallons per year of soda. That's 15 billion gallons, larger than many lakes in our country. The amount of sugar in there is close to 1.7 million tons.

15. With so many great books and websites on healthy dieting, people should now be eating better than ever, instead we have books that advocate dieting on fast food regularly as top sellers. Millions of people followed the Atkins diet, even after Dr. Atkins died overweight with multiple health problems. We have even resulted to men taking a pregnancy hormone to lose weight. Arnold in junior would be proud.

"HCG Arnold?"
16. How about my own career for an example, it is not uncommon at all to meet a firefighter that has had to use extraordinary measures such as a fork lift to move obese people like this crew did in Yorkshire.

17. Although the price of cable has sky rocketed in the last two decades, people are still paying ludicrous prices to destroy their health. When I was a kid in Brooklyn we had about 5 channels for 8 million people to watch, today I've lost track of how many channels dish network, cable etc has, but I know in a lot of places it's over 1,000 channels to keep people inactive. It is estimated the average American now watches 5 hours of TV per day, or as you read in my How Much Time To Get In Shape article, that is more in 1 day than what in 1 week could make a difference in many people's fitness lives.

18. We are living the first time in history where being poor actually means you are overweight. We currently make so much food that we literally throw out millions of tons of it.
"If this was the 1600's, 2/3rd's of Americans would be considered rich!"
19. We are spending more now on health care than ever before to the point where many experts believe it is not sustainable. It is estimated that by 2018 the billions we spend in healthcare already will be increased by 70%.

20. At the turn of the century, processed sugars, salts, and fats we rare, today they are more easily available than ever before. Today the average American consumes more than 30 pounds of sugar a year.

21. Ever see the girl with the beer gut wearing a tube top and wonder if she really thinks it fits good? For many of the women in this survey answer is yes. A survey of over 2,000 showed that close to 40% that were over weight believed they were normal or under weight.

22.  In the 1960's the average dinner plate was 9 inches and could hold about 800 calories of food, today the average dinner plate is 12 inches and can hold more than double that.

23. Although it is well known that healthy eating should be encouraged from childhood, what have we seen almost completey overtake the dining industry on the back page of the menu, the kid's menu. Items like the batman and spiderman are merely shades to cover up and encourage eating of a hot dog or grilled cheese sandwich. I still don't know why a kid with fully developed teeth cannot just eat smaller portions of health food that their parents are eating.

24. Though many people will cite budget as a reason not to join a gym, in the year 2000 Americans spent 110 billion dollars on fast food. That would be enough money to give over 36,000 years of gym memberships based on my current gym rate ($25/month).

25. As we dip further down in our economy, more and more people on tighter budgets give up on one of the most valuable assets to their health, their gym membership, but many will still continue to pay their $100+ a month cable bills, & $70 per month smart phone bills. Ask Siri-"Am I fat?"

    So our waste lines grow and grow, medical problems rise and rise, and junk food gets cheaper and easier, is there a solution? Yes, and there always has been...

    Remember that if you are already overweight it probably took you a long time to get there and it will take a long time to become a healthy body weight again, set realistic goals and slowly begin to weed out every bad diet or skipping the gym habit you've ever had.

    Learn about proper dieting! Read articles on this site, and respected publications, but more importantly, use common sense, how many skinny people do you know that actually drink diet soda?

    Work out! If you don't have time, make time, surely you can skip tonight's episode of Dancing With The Stars for a good workout instead. Your health should be one of your top priorities in life. Tell your riends and family and set up a great support system of people that will back you up.

    Even if you are dirt poor and can't afford a gym membership, work out! One of my brothers on one summer did soley running, push ups, and sit ups and got shredded. Workout at a park, a field, a community center, or just play a sport everyday that breaks a sweat. And if you can't afford a gym membership take a good look at your finances, do you really need to have a $5 cup of sugar loaded star bucks everyday? Or do you really need to watch Desperate Housewives everynight on your $100+ cable bill? What's more valuable your $30 a month data package for your smart phone to skype your neighbor who lives 50 feet from you or having the body you've always wanted?

    Continue to always learn, read books, read on the net, hire a trainer if it is in your budget, but either way, always be learning, and always be weary of any diet or fitness trend that promises fast gains as historically many of these fads tend to cause rebound weight gain or not work at all.

    Enjoy it, being healthy has it's hard parts, but ultimately it is one of the best and most enjoyable things you can do for yourself. You will make your body the greatest thing you've ever owned.

    In this battle against the tipping scales in this country there will always be hope, those of us that refuse to eat bacon burgers with fries every meal, that refuse to skip the gym to watch Oprah and Dr. Phil, that enjoy the heat, sweat, and pump of the iron temple, there will be those of us that will eat at Pita Jungle any day over the Cheese Cake Factory, there are those of us that take pride in drinking free water over expensive sodas, those of us that use our bike instead of driving our car to go a few miles, there are those of us that can't wait till Monday because we know it's the 1st day at the church of bench press, and the best part, is the vast majority of us are eager to share our knowledge and skill with those that don't have it. Have a great day, and an even better workout. Repost, share, or +1 this article and spread the word.

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You may also enjoy:

18 Reasons We Are Getting Fatter Every Minute

20 Shocking Facts On Obesity

Collection Of Article On The Failing American Health Care System

Some of the views and writings in this article are opinion of the writer, consult your doctor or a medical professional before beginning any diet or fitness program.


  1. The Shake Weight is actually real?! I always thought it was a joke (that movement looks far too much like something you should be doing in private)! Great article though - Its important to recognise as well that the internet can be extremely beneficial in terms of providing people with information and motivation - provided you get up off your arse and do something about it! I always struggle to understand how people can be so keen to avoid it - if I stop going to the gym even for a week I feel absolutely terrible!


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