I have been doing more research in the matters of diseases associated with obesity than I care to share. Let’s just say it has become an obsession. For the most part, people who are obese don’t want the potential harm they are doing to themselves. Knowing that information will most likely causes stress and depression, both of which may be their triggers to eating…or overeating. The sad part is, it is all fixable. There is a genetic component to obesity but there is also a way to avoid obesity altogether. It goes back to old school philosophies of diet and exercise; sound science ruling the decisions being made and not some sort of fad scheme to get you hooked on a different vice other than ice cream. In some ways, it is more than just simple math, but at its core, it is about calories in versus calories out. If you are on a 2000 calories diet, that does not mean you can have 6 Starbucks coffees at 333 calories a piece and call it a day. Yes, you will lose weight; however, you will lose muscle and retain fat not solving the obesity problem at all.
Then there is the old food addiction problem. These processed foods are addicting. The taste, the salt, the sugar, the fat; it all tastes fantastic, but it is not nutritionally sound. We are fueling our bodies with mud and wonder why they do not want to cooperate with us when it comes to daily activities. We simply buy bigger clothes to hide the fact we have absolutely no idea how to take care of ourselves. There is a mentality that there is a “pill for every ill.” There is no magic pill for weight loss. If you got fat eating crap then you have to get healthy doing the opposite. Taking a pill and eating the same bad food that got you to your obese nature is not going to fix you. However, the diet industry is a billion dollar industry. So why not capitalize on the world’s inability to control themselves? If the suckers keep coming, why try and stop making stuff to help you lose weight? If the pills advertised really did work, that would be bad for business. All the potential customers would stop coming. The same thing goes for fad diets. If they were sustainable, no one would go back. In order to lose weight, you have to change your life. You have to begin to think that whatever got me to where I am now, it isn’t working. Repeating something and expecting different results defines insanity, doesn’t it?
I was a food addict. I can say was at this point because I have absolutely no desire to go back to eating the things that caused me to gain 200 pounds over the last 20 years. Over the past two decades I have eaten a large adult male. I ask myself all the time….how??? It’s pretty easy, really…convenience. It is convenient to not get out of the car and spend $5 on fast food; food that has hardly any nutritional value. Two double-cheese burgers for $4? Yes please, but make it 4 because I have a $10 bill I don’t want to go to waste. Fries? No, no I don’t want fries because I am trying to avoid fried foods, and I would LOVE a diet coke. That meal right there will kill you. Maybe not kill you immediately, but prematurely. I did this quite often. I believe in cost alone, I had raised the stock value of Ben and Jerry’s, Pizza Hut, Burger King and Taco Bell considerably just by being a loyal customer. I grew up not eating this crap for a reason. My parents knew better. I just neglected all of their sound advice but indulging in how awesome this stuff tasted. Fast forward about 15 years and I developed a waist circumference of 50+, diabetes, high cholesterol, high blood pressure and a level of confidence that was approaching 0. What made me this kind of mess? Poor decision after poor decision. I selfishly had decided that my well-being didn’t matter as long as my taste buds and brain were happy. That’s why they have a big and tall section just about everywhere.
My days getting my clothes at Walmart or JC Penney are just about over. I say just about because I have a bit to go, but my head start has so much momentum it would take an act of God to stop me. This time, my feelings about getting to a healthy weight are not about me. I have kids who love me and need me in their life. I have a loving wife that has put up with my fat ass for far too long. I have a set of loving and, I am sure, confused parents who want so badly to see me in a healthier state. They deserve that. I do not want to see them go to their graves knowing that their last memory of me was of a morbidly obese, miserable human being. They deserve better. I know I do as well. The battle over obesity is not won immediately. It requires consistency and dedication. If I can overcome a food addiction…anyone can.