A new report from the Center for Disease Control is out announcing that for the first time more than 25% of adult Americans are officially obese. Now you may be thinking, “my friends may be a little overweight but I’m glad they aren’t obese.” But of course this study is using the BMI index definition of obese. In that definition your chubby friends very well could be officially obese. Here are some examples of obese people:
- Anyone who is 6′ 2″ and more than 234 lbs.
- Anyone who is 6′ 0″ and more than 221 lbs.
- Anyone who is 5’10″ and more than 209 lbs.
- Anyone who is 5′ 8″ and more than 197 lbs
- Anyone who is 5′ 6″ and more than 186 lbs
- Anyone who is 5′ 4″ and more than 175 lbs
- Anyone who is 5′ 2″ and more than 164 lbs
Do you know anyone who fits that bill?
Yeah, I know the BMI is a very crude measurement that calls zero-body-fat muscle heads obese. So if you are a muscle head ignore this measurement. But for the other 99+ percent of us I suspect we would do well to put less pie in the ol’ pie holes.
I’ve seen all kinds of weight related articles in the news lately. One pointed out that with the exception of trans fats (which apparently do make you fat) — a calorie is a calorie when it comes to gaining or losing weight. That is, it boils down to calories in and calories out in the end. To gain weight just consume more calories than you burn. To lose weight burn more calories than you consume. (Revolutionary, no?). Another set of articles reported that the Atkins diet isn’t any worse for you than other diets. But the one I liked best came out about 10 days ago and reported that dieters who wrote down what they ate lost twice as much weight as those who didn’t keep a food journal. I’m 6′ 0″ and my weight had slowly been drifting into the 184-185 pound range. According to the BMI index I am officially “overweight” at 184 lbs. So a week ago Tuesday I started writing down everything I ate to see what would happen. So far so good; I’ve cut more than 5 pounds. It is amazing how writing down everything I eat reminded me when to say when as I ate. Or how it gave me willpower to ignore the cookie on the counter (I didn’t want to have to admit in writing that I snarfed it). And it turns out I am not hungry with these fewer calories coming in in the last week and a half. I apparently was in the habit of eating even when I was not hungry before. A side benefit has been that once I got in the groove of the food diary I started trying to get a couple of walking miles in with the iPod or whatever exercise I could squeeze in too (now that I was paying attention and all). Anyhow, I recommend giving the food journal thing a try.
You would think that with all of our “your body is a temple” rhetoric and our occasionally self-congratulatory attitude about the Word of Wisdom that we Mormons would be generally less fat than non Mormons. But my eyes tell a different story. We seem to fit in with the rest of America just fine in the porkiness category. I bet we would start losing weight if President Monson announced that being obese was against the Word of Wisdom… I can think of all sorts of good that could come from that. Maybe we should all pray and see if we can talk God into having President Monson implement such a policy. I think it might be good for me the next time my weight and waistline begin to drift…
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