Tuesday, April 24, 2007

I know why you're fat

Such a arrogant statement from the normally bubbly Blonde Duck! But it's true! I know why the world is going fat.


I've been pondering this question since last week, when we went to Dave's going away party. The party began at 9 at a restaurant, which was nearly overflowing with diners. At first I thought, 'They must be here for a desert, or perhaps drinks.' Wrong. These people were double fisting hamburgers and chicken fried steaks the size of my head down their gullet faster than I can finish this sentence, their plates heaping with enormous servings of fries. They washed their meals down with three or four glasses of wine and picked at the queso and chips they had snacked on earlier. After all this, they order a huge slice of chocolate cake for every person at the table!

I stared at these people in shock. It was Wednesday night. It wasn't even a weekend. And these people were eating as thought they might never eat again! Now, I can put away food with the best of them. If you even try to take a bite of my food, I've been known to stab people with forks. This isn't a hypercritical observation. It just boggles my mind that people eat like this then whine about being fat.

Perhaps I was being unfair. I pulled aside a waiter and asked if it was always like this so late at night. They said it was, and that this was actually unusually calm. CALM? There were people squeezing out of every crack of the restaurant! It literally boggled my mind. I didn't get it.

So all week, this has been bothering me. "Why?", I asked myself, "Do people whine about being fat when they eat like bears going into hibernation on a daily basis?" Now to be fair, there are people that work out, eat right and don't lose weight. Those people have a genetic issue or metabolism problems. I'm discussing the people that think a chef salad the size of a flying saucer is a light lunch and then whine that they have some extra pudge.

Since I'm now the temporary editor of a medical newspaper at work, I was thinking of a editorial to write. Then the answer to the world's obesity problems came to me. So here, in it's entirety, is the editorial. I hope you enjoy it.



Hedonism: Darwin's Tasty Plan
Beefy. Husky. Plump. Large. Voluptuous. Teddy Bear. Call it whatever you want, it all boils down to one harsh, three letter word: FAT. The entire world is getting fat, and no one seems to know why.

Depending on what day of the week it is, health officials have a new excuse for why people can’t fit in airplane seats and on X-Ray machine tables. Some say it’s due to longer working hours and sedentary lifestyles peppered with fast food bags. Others blame expensive produce prices for making it hard for lower income families to get healthy food. Some believe it’s our pre-historic fat storing tendencies, and one British researcher has found a fat gene. Then there are those who believe that temptations of the suburbs full of restaurants and devoid of sidewalks have replaced people’s ability to walk with a commuter’s lifestyle full of soccer games and piano lessons.

With obesity rates are rising all over the world and a estimated 1.1 billion people in the world overweight and 312 million are obese, there’s obviously a problem. Even over 10 percent pre-schoolers from 2 to 5-years-old are obese, which is a terrifying fact. Three-year-olds shouldn’t have to worry about diabetes and hypertension; they should worry about Timmy trying to take their favorite doll.

But why are we gaining so fat? At first, doctors chalked it up to American’s love of fattening foods. Now even South Africans are becoming obese as quickly as we are, proving that at least not all the children in Africa are starving.

As I asked various people at various weights why they thought people were fat, the majority of them automatically replied they were lazy. They didn’t enjoy exercising, they didn’t enjoy walking and it was easier to go eat out at a restaurant than fix a meal at home. After a long day of work, the last thing they wanted to do was get on a treadmill. They wanted a cookie.

Perhaps the answer is that as a nation and city, we turn to food for comfort. Depressed? Drown your sorrows in cheese enchiladas! Bad day? Cheesecake, here I come! While that may explain some people’s weight troubles, not all obese people are depressed. So that obviously isn’t the sole answer. Genetics can’t be entirely blamed either, even though it plays a part. Not everyone is born weighing 400 pounds.

Then suddenly, it all made sense. The world has gone fat because we’ve all become hedonists, and this is nature’s way of weeding us out! People naturally want to indulge themselves, and this generation doesn’t have the struggles past generations have dealt with. We don’t suffer from food rations, most of us have plenty of money when we’re not dropping it at the mall and healthcare is more available than ever. Since nature can’t kill us with a case of small pox, they’ve had to look inside for the answers. There they discovered our fat cells that were more than happy to plump up with McDonalds and ice cream.

As people gained more discretionary income, food became a source of entertainment and comfort rather than substance. Since we didn’t have to head out to the woods everyday, traditions were built around specific dishes that have become more elaborate over time. Since sugar and butter are no longer scarce, pies and cakes are no longer a cherished treat but standard every day fare. The more we indulge ourselves in our food obsessions, the faster we kill ourselves off. It’s Darwin’s poisoned chocolate bar—it’s sure tasty, but too many bites will kill you.

So while you shouldn’t starve yourself like the Brazilian models, reign in your hedonistic practices every once in awhile. It’s not like it will kill you.

3 comments:

Mom said...

Great article and unfortunately to true. I still think prepackaged food had something in it that is hurting people. What do you think?

The Blonde Duck said...

I think that's some of it.....I just think in general, having pre-packaged food and pre-made food with tons of perservatives and calories is what is making people fat, plus the lack of movement. And instead of watching your diet with light meals, people eat 4-cheese ravoli and hamburgers every night and get confused........

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