Thursday, July 20, 2017
Quote Of The Week
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  Week 18

“I wouldn’t have been as interested in the question of why we can’t resist food if I didn’t have it myself... I gained and lost my body weight several times over. I have suits in every size.” - Dr. David A. Kessler
 
  Week 18

“I wouldn’t have been as interested in the question of why we can’t resist food if I didn’t have it myself... I gained and lost my body weight several times over. I have suits in every size.” - Dr. David A. Kessler
 


Alicia's Musing
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Why is it that some people are sedentary and eat highly processed foods but are not overweight? 

Genetics. 

People with obese relatives have a genetic predisposition to weight gain. An article from the Center of Disease Control and Prevention (January 20, 2011) reveals: “In an environment made constant for food intake and physical activity, individuals respond differently. Some people store more energy as fat in an environment of excess; others lose less fat in an environment of scarcity. The different responses are largely due to genetic variation between individuals. The tendency to store energy in the form of fat is believed to result from thousands of years of evolution in an environment characterized by tenuous food supplies. In other words, those who could store energy in times of plenty were more likely to survive periods of famine and to pass this tendency to their offspring.” 

So, in tough times, those of us who store fat best are the survivors. But modern life has fast food outlets, and a plethora of restaurants and grocery stores, ensuring there are no more tough times in acquiring food.

I remember a conversation I had with my son when he was about 9 or 10 years old. We were talking about his friends, and how skinny they were despite the pizza and wings and fries they lived on. I tried to explain that this was not our reality; we were going to store that excess fat so we couldn’t eat that way, and that we also had a history of heart disease in our family. “That sucks, Mom”, was his response. “Yes, honey, it does. But you know, just because your friends are skinny doesn’t mean they are healthy. And look at all the things you are good at that may be challenging for others.”  In the back of my mind was the latest study conducted on 12 year old average weight boys, where researchers were stunned to find the beginning of heart disease!

It was a relief for me to find that my weight gain was not entirely my fault. But, did that mean I was facing a losing battle? How many times did I sigh and think ‘oh, what is the point? I just look at food and gain weight?’ Lots. But I was wrong to give up.

The reality is this: obesity is a chronic lifelong condition in this land of plenty that is enhanced by lack of activity and a susceptible genotype. BUT IT IS NOT YOUR DESTINY.  Obesity can be prevented or managed with a combination of healthy eating and physical activity (and, sometimes, medication).

So you see, you do get to pick your life. My son is right, it is unfair, it is a bigger challenge for us, but who said life was easy? It is worth the extra effort for me because I want a life filled with vitality, and I want to model that life to all the people I love. And that makes me feel great in the profoundest way.
      
      

Why is it that some people are sedentary and eat highly processed foods but are not overweight? 

Genetics. 

People with obese relatives have a genetic predisposition to weight gain. An article from the Center of Disease Control and Prevention (January 20, 2011) reveals: “In an environment made constant for food intake and physical activity, individuals respond differently. Some people store more energy as fat in an environment of excess; others lose less fat in an environment of scarcity. The different responses are largely due to genetic variation between individuals. The tendency to store energy in the form of fat is believed to result from thousands of years of evolution in an environment characterized by tenuous food supplies. In other words, those who could store energy in times of plenty were more likely to survive periods of famine and to pass this tendency to their offspring.” 

So, in tough times, those of us who store fat best are the survivors. But modern life has fast food outlets, and a plethora of restaurants and grocery stores, ensuring there are no more tough times in acquiring food.

I remember a conversation I had with my son when he was about 9 or 10 years old. We were talking about his friends, and how skinny they were despite the pizza and wings and fries they lived on. I tried to explain that this was not our reality; we were going to store that excess fat so we couldn’t eat that way, and that we also had a history of heart disease in our family. “That sucks, Mom”, was his response. “Yes, honey, it does. But you know, just because your friends are skinny doesn’t mean they are healthy. And look at all the things you are good at that may be challenging for others.”  In the back of my mind was the latest study conducted on 12 year old average weight boys, where researchers were stunned to find the beginning of heart disease!

It was a relief for me to find that my weight gain was not entirely my fault. But, did that mean I was facing a losing battle? How many times did I sigh and think ‘oh, what is the point? I just look at food and gain weight?’ Lots. But I was wrong to give up.

The reality is this: obesity is a chronic lifelong condition in this land of plenty that is enhanced by lack of activity and a susceptible genotype. BUT IT IS NOT YOUR DESTINY.  Obesity can be prevented or managed with a combination of healthy eating and physical activity (and, sometimes, medication).

So you see, you do get to pick your life. My son is right, it is unfair, it is a bigger challenge for us, but who said life was easy? It is worth the extra effort for me because I want a life filled with vitality, and I want to model that life to all the people I love. And that makes me feel great in the profoundest way.
      


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