Fat and Not Afraid

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Scanning the headlines

March 21, 2010

It must be a slow night tonight because the Canadian news site CBC.ca doesn't have a single obesity or weight loss related post up in their Health section of the site.  I was looking through for something to write about or comment on but was left sorely disappointed for lack of writing material but kinda happy.  On the other hand, for comparison and curiosity's sake, I checked out CNN.com and they have 2 stories up PLUS an entire section devoted to weight loss and obesity accessible through the click of a heading.

Fox, oddly enough, doesn't have anything like that, though they do have fitness, chloresterol, and heart disease links, all rife with "omg your fat is going to kill you!' type stories. 

MSNBC's health section has one really great (and by great I mean totally sucky) article titled "U.S kids even fatter than believed".  From the article: It found that 7 percent of boys and 5 percent of girls were extremely obese, as were more than 2 percent of all children under 5 years old."  Really? Those are some pretty small percentages to be getting upset about.  They also have a section specifically for diet and nutrition, and inside THAT there's a section just for weight loss and obesity.  Some of the headlines are your typical 'fat bad, skinny good' fare, but one or two are almost worth reading!  This one, titled "Don't blame fast food for making you fat" (wasn't gonna, thanks) points out that artificial hormones in our food and absorbed in other ways may be wreaking havoc on our body's ability to self-regulate.  The name 'obesogens' nearly made me laugh out loud but they're not really something to be laughed about, judging from the quote below:

"Obesogens are chemicals that disrupt the function of hormonal systems; many researchers believe they lead to weight gain and, in turn, numerous diseases that curse the American populace. They enter our bodies from a variety of sources — natural hormones found in soy products, hormones administered to animals, plastics in some food and drink packaging, ingredients added to processed foods, and pesticides sprayed on produce. They act in a variety of ways: by mimicking human hormones such as estrogen, by misprogramming stem cells to become fat cells and, researchers think, by altering the function of genes.

Endocrine disruptors are suspected of playing a role in fertility problems, genital malformation, reduced male birth rates, precocious puberty, miscarriage, behavior problems, brain abnormalities, impaired immune function, various cancers, and cardiovascular disease. "We have data linking environmental chemicals to practically every major human disease, from cardiovascular disease to attention-deficit disorder," says Jerry Heindel, Ph.D., an expert on EDCs at the National Institute of Environmental Health Sciences (NIEHS)."

Across the pond, the BBC site doesn't have a Health section, nor any obesity articles riling up the front page.  Amazing!  I've noticed over the past couple of years that the U.K seems to have quite the hate on for fat folk, so not seeing ANYTHING directly about obesity on their website was a real surprise.  I actually had to use the search feature and the word 'obesity' in order to find anything at all.  One story is nice, up until the end: Why Diets are Doomed to Fail.  They talk about how diets don't work because the body recognizes that you're trying to starve it and resists, and then when you stop dieting the pounds pile back on (with friends!) to make up for what's been lost.  It's a good article, until the writer says she's going after the 'holy grail' of dieting the following Tuesday.  *eyeroll*

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