Recently, Today Show host Megyn Kelly said: “Some of us want to be (fat) shamed! ... When I was in law school, I was gaining weight, I said to my stepfather, ‘If you see me going into that kitchen one more time, you say, ‘Where you going, fat xxx?’ And it works!”
Why would anyone want to be treated like that? Maybe because, as Kelly points out, it works, and because we know being fat almost is always our fault, and because being fat makes us unattractive, and perhaps most importantly because we know intellectually or instinctively just how un-healthy obesity is.
Of course Kelly was forced to apologize for what she said, but why?
Obesity is the leading health problem in the United States. Two-thirds of adults are fat and what really infuriates Rimersburg Rules is kids are victims. In the past 30 years, childhood obesity has more than doubled and the kids don’t know any better. Adults should. We’re not doing anyone a favor by mainstreaming fatness via “plus size” models or pretending obesity is natural and something you can’t help.
Let’s be clear. You get fat by eating or drinking too much and by not exercising. Period. Yes, there’s the “one person out of a million” health condition, and Rules is not writing about you folks. However, the rest of us get fat by failing to exercise personal discipline.
The first thousand calories you eat or drink are stored in the muscles and liver. Doctors call them glycogen and they’re the first to get burned up. If you don’t use more than a thousand calories moving around, the excess gets converted into fat cells, which doctors call triglycerides. These fat cells are only burned if all the glycogen reserves are used up.
So, the only way to keep from being fat is to make sure your intake and output are in balance. If you are fat, the only way to lose weight is to eat or drink less and exercise more. Which sucks! That’s why a little fat shaming isn’t a bad thing. It’s a warning that you’re getting out of control and saves you from having to starve yourself and work your butt off at the same time.
“Cruel to be kind,” as Todd Rundgren once sang. The people who are really cruel try to excuse or mainstream obesity.
Consider the consequences of being fat. According to WebMD, obesity is the most common cause of sleep apnea. Fat causes inflammation and degrades the muscles in your respiratory system so you’re out of breath. The fatty tissue under your skin gives you stretch marks, becomes tender, and causes pain and bruising for no reason. Other symptoms include headaches, depression, acid reflux disease, pancreatitis and lots more.
Because you’re carrying more weight than you were designed for — like carrying a large, heavy back pack — the extra pressure on your joints wears down the tissue around them and makes moving first uncomfortable, then painful. Your knees, back, hips and feet will hurt all the time. Your feet will swell because the buildup of fluid in the tissues collects mostly in the feet.
Encouraging that doesn’t sound very compassionate to Rules.
Two very good friends were obese until they tried the same dieting system. The results were amazing. In less than a year, both friends were off their decades-long blood pressure meds and Cpap machines. Then one of them gave away his insulin because his diabetes went away!
Rules didn’t even know that could happen.
If you read this column it’s obvious you’re a pretty cool, intelligent person. So if you’re fat, why not set aside a year? Start eating less and walking more. Talk to your doctor or friends about a diet plan and holding you accountable. If Rules’ two friends can do it, you can too.
And you’re too cool to lose before your time.
[This is a column of opinion and satire. The author knows of no undisclosed facts. To comment or learn more, contact Lewis at josephmaxlewis.com and click on Rimersburg Rules. Joseph M. Lewis the author of “Separation of Church and State” and “The Diaries of Pontius Pilate.”]