In keeping with the theme of Friday the 13th, I thought it would only be appropriate to share something terrifying with you all. Sorry, I can’t help you with which really cheesy horror movie debut you should attend. And I can’t list the best and worst Friday the 13th movies in order. Mostly, it’s because I hate scary movies. Otherwise, it’s because the film industry and its sad attempt to instill fear in us through red dye, loud noises, and sudden movements has all but failed. At least it has since the original Exorcist, in my opinion.
Don’t give up yet on thrill of shock and terror you all desire today. There’s something out there that actually follows through on frightening us to the point of curling up in the fetal position and sleeping under the covers all night. What is this atrocious thing that can scare even the manliest of men, you ask? The food industry. And I’ll gladly be the first to say that it has done just a terrific job at scaring the shit out of me (and you) by being one of the major causes of diabetes, obesity, hypertension, cancer and a slew of other preventable epidemic diseases. And it has done so in the most deliberately gradual and sneakiest of ways – like giving candy to a baby. Literally.
So, unlike that two hour waste of time that was simply the brainchild of some demented writer with too much suppressed adolescent anger, this shit is real life scary and its impact lasts longer than a mere two hours. It makes me cringe. It makes me want to cover my face with my hands and watch life happen by peeping through the cracks between my fingers. Believe me, I’d much rather watch some actors kill each other quickly, at least attempting to stay alive and all for the purpose of entertainment (I think?), than witness everyone around me slowly kill themselves, welcoming the media, the food industry, and the FDA each to twist the knife a little deeper.
Luckily, there are a great many people who make informed decisions about what they eat and who choose to be active on a daily basis, reversing the damage done before their current state of awareness. Unfortunately, this is NOT the majority. Unfortunately, we have too many followers in this country (and the media is the main culprit in the position of leader). Unfortunately, laziness is further promoted with each new technological advance (as is Frankenfood). Unfortunately, this small informed population had to inform themselves. Unfortunately, not much is changing for the better.
Here are some statistics that make me want to burn down a McDonald’s:
- More than 1 billion people worldwide are overweight
- 2/3 of Americans over the age of 20 are overweight
- Worldwide obesity is nearly double what it was in 1980
- The U.S. has the highest obesity statistics (out of 22 industrialized countries)
- More than 1/3 of Americans over the age of 20 are obese
- The estimated medical cost of obesity in 2008 was $147 billion
- No state has an obesity rate less than 20% – Some states have rates up to 35% (GA is at 29%)
- Childhood obesity in America has nearly doubled in the last 20 years
- 12% of 2-5 year olds are obese
- 18% of 6-19 year olds are obese
As your weight increases to the level of overweight (BMI between 25 and 29.9) or obese (BMI higher than 30), so does your risk for the following preventable diseases:
- Heart disease
- Hypertension (high blood pressure)
- High cholesterol
- Liver/Gallbladder disease
- Type 2 Diabetes
Type 2 Diabetes accounts for roughly 85% of all diabetes in America. 90% of people with Type 2 diabetes are overweight. Almost 60% of children with Type 2 Diabetes are obese.
I hope everyone realizes that the media ploys you see on a daily basis at the grocery store, on TV, in magazines, etc. advertising unhealthy foods as heart healthy, low fat, no fat, sugar free, no sugar added, low carb, made with real this, real that, so on and so forth, is nothing but real bull shit. After you read their lies on the front of the box, laugh, then turn it over and read the ingredients. Then laugh again and put it back on the shelf, knowing that you’re smarter than they are and that you’re not going to fall victim to their weak attempts to have you give them money in exchange for lifelong health issues.
I know this is an extreme way to think about this, but I honestly believe that all the players (media, food corporations, FDA, etc.) that have contributed to the extreme rise in obesity, and the diseases that go along with it, should be held responsible for murder. Approximately 300,000 deaths each year may be attributed to obesity. That’s criminal. In my opinion.
Don’t think that I’m solely blaming those responsible for producing the brightly colored packaging and smooth talking ads we’re all deceived to believe. We don’t have to believe them. We choose to, either because we’re not informed (no wonder there!) or because it’s easier to be lazy and/or ignorant about our health, chowin’ down at Olive Garden screamin’ YOLO. To me, this is suicide. A slow, agonizing, self-inflicted death that is completely preventable.
People need to be saved from themselves. Again, maybe extreme, but I think there should be fitness and nutrition rehabilitation centers for the obese. I think you should be able to intervention style check someone in until they reach a healthier weight and are educated enough to maintain it.
Enough of my tangent. I could go on forever, in a million different directions, but I’ll save that for another
There are ways to begin reversing the detrimental effects of the shit food this country feeds us. There are ways to get healthier, get informed, and prevent the untimely death that even your doctors might have you believe is inevitable.
Understand that no one else can do it for you. Don’t blame anyone but yourself. You are accountable for your decisions, so make them good ones.
- Eat right
- Inform yourself about what is actually healthy, not what is advertised as healthy
- Make a grocery list – shop on the perimeter of the store
- Make a list of healthy recipes
- Control your portions
- Avoid eating out
- Write down what you’re eating
- Be active
- Inform yourself about what kind of activities you need to be doing to reach your goals
- Just move – even if it’s just going for a walk
- Do it every day – make it a habit
- Strive to be better every day – walk farther than yesterday
- Write down your activities daily
- Find a weight loss program or support group
- It’s easier to stick with it when you have guidelines and friends who are going through the same thing
- We have access to literally everything through the internet, so use it to educate yourself
I wish more people understood that food can create cancer, IBS, celiac disease, hypertension, diabetes, and other chronic diseases. I wish those same people would understand that food can prevent and/or reverse those same diseases. Poison or medicine? It’s your choice.
Eat clean and move! It’s really just that simple.