Wednesday, August 21, 2013

Don't blame me if I'm fat!

Fat Cat Moe

No, this isn't about all the weight I put on on holiday! This brilliant article explains why it's just too simplistic to accuse people who are overweight of a lack of will power leading to eating too much. How do we know it's not just that? Because many species of animals that live close to humans and who are on restricted diets are also getting fatter. It's not just about intake calories versus output exercise; the reasons are much more complex than that.

Possible culprits for the growing obesity trend include:
  • Sleeplessness
  • Stress
  • Viruses
  • Bacteria
  • Industrial chemicals
  • Heavy metals
  • Electric lights
  • Heating
  • Air conditioning
  • Famine in previous generations
It's probably a combination of a number of these leading to growing obesity. Sadly, the conclusion isn't that we can all eat as much as we like and it won't make any difference. If only! It really is worth reading the article to get the full picture.

Oh, and that photo isn't my cat, it's from Flickr. I couldn't resist his adorable shyness about his weight. (The photographer says "he's hiding from his famousness".)


Lexi said...

You're not taking me with you on this one, FH. How do you explain all the people who are fit, healthy and a normal weight?

fairyhedgehog said...

I don't!

It seems to me it's very complicated, and that if many of the people (and animals) who are getting fatter aren't eating more then in some cases something else may be contributing.

It's worth reading the article because it's a complex subject and my summary doesn't do it justice.

Lexi said...

In my young day it was brown fat cells. I remember my then boyfriend showing me an article in triumph and saying it was easy for me to stay slim while he put on weight as obviously, I had these magic cells and he didn't.

Nothing to do with the fact that he'd got his first car and stopped cycling...

fairyhedgehog said...

Brown fat cells and chemicals - if only they let us off the hook! I'm thinking of trying cycling to my new job - it's only 4 miles but I don't want to turn up too tired to work! Maybe I can work up to it.

Lexi said...

4 miles is quite a lot. I bike 2.4 miles to work - it takes me 12-15 minutes, and the nice thing is, I feel I can put up with any weather and traffic for such a short time. 4 miles and I might be tempted to get the Overground now and then...

fairyhedgehog said...

It took me ages to try out the route today due to google directions being very confusing in places. I reckon it's about a 40 minute ride (google thinks it's 25!) which is doable.

But Mr Hedgehog has just looked over the contract with me before I post it off and he's raised a few concerns. Oh dear. I hope I can get this new job to work out!

Whirlochre said...

Brisk walking is the key.

Most neighbourhoods feature 5 or 10 minute routes you can find a way of whipping round.

When I'm stuck indoors at the keyboard, it's a great way to take a break, and on a really good procrastination day I can fit in half a dozen quick walks.

Plus — love the cat!

fairyhedgehog said...

Whirl, I didn't know that procrastination is good for your health!

(I like that cat photo too.)

Sophie in the Moonlight said...

I have two other reasons to add to the what-makes-one-fat list: thyroid issues (controls all other hormones in body as well as metabolism) and medication side effects, especially psychiatric meds. At our house I tell husband, "you can have a fat, sane wife or a skinny crazy wife." Sometimes I'm not sure which I prefer. ;)

Welcome Home!

fairyhedgehog said...

Hi Sophie! You're spot on about both those things. My Mum developed thyroid problems and went from skinny to very large, even though she was given medication. The doctors over here seem to like to keep people under-medicated. And when my son changed from one anti-depressant to another he lost about three stones in weight.

And do you know, my son's doctor was convinced that if only he'd lose weight he wouldn't be tired all the time. He has CFS. The weight loss made zero difference.

Sorry, I won't rant at you any more especially as we're both on the same side in this! It's lovely to see you again. I hope you're well.

Crystal Collier said...

I KNOW! It's amazing how the overall health of a person is so closely connected with their mental/emotional state. Granted, exercise to keep the metabolism going is always a great idea. I find my mental state is much better when I've had a workout. ;)

fairyhedgehog said...

Crystal, I agree. If I don't do any exercise in a day I feel jumpy and irritable, so I usually get out there on my bike even if it's only for a tootle around the lanes round here.

Vanessa Morgan said...

Lovely blog. I'm now following alonng via Bloglovin and looking forward to visiting often. Meow.

Old Kitty said...

I've been thoroughly enjoying the docus "The men who made us fat.." "The men who made us thin.." etc. Very very enlightening!!! Basically saying the same thing as this article! I think one of the scientist in the docu said that the human body has been structured to store food when there is plenty to stave off the times when there is not so plenty. So we eat during summer to keep starvation at bay during winter when traditionally there isn't any food anywhere. These days food is available (in the western and rich countries) all year round and more so food that is totally not healthy or conducive to the humans' biology. And such food that is controlled by these rich mega companies who pedal the unproven link that exercise alone makes you lose weight. What a mess!

Take care

fairyhedgehog said...

Kitty, I haven't seen those programs; they sound interesting. I must admit we ate a lot this summer on holiday, the only snag is that the cold weather makes us want to eat more too. I suppose we should be grateful we all have enough food all the time!

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