The straight dope about why Americans are fat

The straight dope about why Americans are fat

By A. Gagliardi

1. We eat too much. We are overweight because we eat too much.

That roll around your middle is an indicator of just how much you are overweight. There is no use for a scale when your jelly-roll (muffin top, spare tire) reminds you daily just how overweight you are. And any attempt to loose weight seems like just too much work. If we eat carbs for breakfast, have a fast food lunch and add a glass of wine to our steak and potato supper, we will probably not loose the weight.

What the nutrition experts say about eating your five to seven servings of vegetables and fruit is true, but we need to eat those servings first – before the other stuff. Next we should eat protein, including and importantly the kind of protein found in beans and grains. I know you think protein and vegetables is chicken nuggets and fries, but I gotta’ tell ya that won’t help you loose weight. You have to go beyond the pale and eat the green.

2. Ladies burned their bras in the 1960’s and other undergarments too. My grandmother wore a corsette around her 6-foot frame. Women in the 50’s had girdles to keep their body in check. When we decided to “Let it all hang out” that is just what our bodies did – hang out.

We have no external cue that our bodies are getting any bigger except for that ever-increasing roll hanging over our waist-band. “Dunlaps disease”, meaning (“my belly done lap over my belt”) can only be cured by sucking it in and keeping it there. And the use of a little helper to remind us never hurt anyone.

3. European women have an inner girdle that they constantly keep working. In the USA we call that Pilates. It is a new trend here, but honestly Pilates have been around a long time.

We have got to learn to hold our stomachs in all the time, not just while we are in the gym. The recent resurgence of Pilates classes has helped a few learn about their abdomen muscles. We need to keep those muscles engaged as we walk, sit and work. It takes lots of practice and lots of reminders until it becomes second nature.

4. Poor posture! Yes. Our mothers were right. Sit up straight! When you sit on the couch, you often roll your pelvic to the back and let your stomach hang out, so your middle begins to look like a pita bread sandwich – folding in the middle. Hum.

We need to select furniture that is good for our posture and keep reminding ourselves that we need to sit up straight.

5. We don’t exercise enough! Ok, I know you go to Curves twice a week, to your exercise class every Friday, or you walk to the lake each morning; but I’ve recently been told that that just isn’t enough to loose the weight. We need to get our heart rate up several times a day (short bursts of energy that don’t come from a double mocha, skim milk, whip cream and extra sprinkles.) Using caffeine or sugar to keep us moving gives a false sense of moving . We need to push ourselves just a bit more during our workouts in order to, as Jazzersize guru used to say, “feel the burn

6. We are under alot of stress and the daily Cortisol dumping keeps the hormones running amoke in our bodies. You absolutely need 'down time' every day. That means time for relaxing that is not sitting in front of a screen while stuffing your mouth with sugar, salt or caffeine. We need to breath while taking a leisurely walk, or bike or do something fun that we want to do - not job related - not second shift housework. Take a break not tied to your cell phone, your computer or any other technology. We also don't take the time to process what we take in. How can we attend a workshop, have pages of reading and then get right to work on that very thing before we have time to digest what we have just learned? What are you, superman? Give yourself time to process. Then get some down time.

So, people, we have to quit-cher-belly-achin and git going. Stop eating; exercise; process; sit up straight, suck in that tummy and take a break.

Casey shows us what to do.

Wear your girdle.
Wear your girdle.
Get enough sleep.
Get enough sleep.
Eat nutritiously. Make good food choices.
Eat nutritiously. Make good food choices.
Get enough down time.
Get enough down time.
Give yourself time to process.
Give yourself time to process.

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Comments 6 comments

vocalcoach profile image

vocalcoach 6 years ago from Nashville Tn.

This is a marvelous hub - I just love this " When we decided to “Let it all hang out” that is just what our bodies did – hang out." You are a talented writer with just the right sprinkling of humor. Saved this in my fav's. You new BFF.

agaglia profile image

agaglia 6 years ago Author


Thanks for your reading and for your comment.It is hard to loose weight. Our best defense is to keep if off to begin with.

Phil Plasma profile image

Phil Plasma 5 years ago from Montreal, Quebec

Yes, eating too much is for sure the problem.

Your note about posture is also a helpful one, I need to be reminded constantly. Great hub earning you a vote-up and an interesting.

agaglia profile image

agaglia 5 years ago Author

HI Phil, thanks for your comment. Yes Posture is a "little known fact" type of tip. Glad you liked it.

JamaGenee profile image

JamaGenee 5 years ago from Central Oklahoma

Besides the bra-burning, the availibilty of home PCs and the internet has had MUCH to do with the increase in obesity in America. ;D

agaglia profile image

agaglia 3 years ago Author

JamaGenee, Yes. you are right. They provide temptation to sit longer than we should. thanks for your comment

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