Weight discrimination may lead to more weight gain
Discriminating against people because of their weight may only increase their likelihood of gaining more weight,new study shows.I won't bore you with my first reaction, except to say that it rhymes with Roo Trucking Goo. See, this is one of those areas where I happen to have direct experience. Ten years ago, I weighed close to 300 pounds, had painful gout flare-ups several times a year, and was on medication for high blood pressure. Seven years ago I decided that I needed to make changes to correct that, and for the past six years I've been within 10 pounds of my goal weight, I've been off blood pressure medication for that entire time, and I've had one gout flare-up (directly related to, ironically enough, a cessation in coffee consumption).
The researchers found that among people who were not obese, those who reported experiencing weight discrimination were 2.5 times more likely to have become obese four years later.
Among people who were obese at the start of the study, those who experienced discrimination were three times more likely to remain obese, compared with those who did not feel discriminated against, the study found.
Yes, I understand, for some people there are physiological reasons why they cannot lose weight. Metabolic glitches, thyroid conditions, etc. - there really are valid medical reasons why some people can't simply go on diets. But the vast majority are overweight because of one simple reason: They eat more calories than they burn off in a day. It's quite simple. You want to lose weight? Burn more calories in a day than you take in. Want to eat cheeseburgers and fries? No problem - just bike 50 miles or so after a 10 mile run. Problem solved.
Now, they don't actually describe what "weight discrimination" - they simply link to an article about how overweight women can face social stigma. It's hard to effectively counter the claim that "weight discrimination" leads to more obesity if you don't define what "weight discrimination" means. I suppose it might mean that obese people are less likely to get something - jobs? dates? promotions? - but without defining the extent of the discrimination it's mighty hard to counter. Is this study honestly making the claim that overweight people have more trouble getting dates? Welcome to my entire high school and college career, folks.
More importantly, what are we expected to do? Is there going to be some sort of "date parity" test, where a certain number of cheerleaders are going to have to go out with the fat kid? The article references how "weight discrimination" is an accepted form of discrimination - but, again, fails to adequately define what they mean by discrimination. There's no evidence presented that overweight people are turned down for promotion, or don't get jobs, or suffer any of the other forms of discrimination that occur on a regular basis.
There's just this claim that being "discriminated" against makes it worse - which, again, is another attempt to take the responsibility away from the person and put it somewhere else. You see, it's not my fault I'm obese - I suffered "weight discrimination" and turned to eating to make it better. If it's "discrimination" at fault, we can pass laws and make rules and force quotas and such. And, naturally, have a "Anti-Obese Discrimination" Bureau responsible for making sure that [X] number of overweight people are hired/promoted/displayed in ads/etc. All to combat some nebulous "discrimination" which, as far as I can tell, means "some people treat me differently than a skinny person" - IOW, welcome to life.
I like the way my blogdaughter put it: "If weight discrimination makes heavy people fat, does height discrimination make me taller?"
That is all.