Obesity rates keep going up

In the early 1960s, only 13 percent of adults were obese. By 1999, more than 30 percent were obese.

American men are getting fatter. Despite numerous public health campaigns touting healthy eating and exercise, it appears that the rate of obesity in American males is increasing rather than decreasing.

“The prevalence of obesity and abdominal obesity remains disturbingly high among adults in the United States, and our trend analysis shows that both may still be increasing among men,” wrote Dr. Earl Ford and his colleagues in the International Journal of Obesity. The rising tide of obesity has all but ruled out the chances that the U.S. will meet its goal of reducing the percentage of obese Americans to 15 percent by the end of 2010.

In the early 1960s, only 13 percent of adults were obese. By 1999, more than 30 percent were obese. In order to whittle U.S. obesity rates down to 15 percent, Ford and his team say the average American would either need to consume 500 fewer calories a day, walk for nearly two additional hours a day or burn off the equivalent amount of calories doing some other type of physical activity.

Many natural medicine doctors point out that the CDC’s prescription is far too simplistic. It says nothing about obesogens, for example, which are natural estrogenic-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 do damage by mimicking human hormones such as estrogen, by misprogramming stem cells to become fat cells and, researchers think, by altering the function of genes. Whether you are a man or a woman, too much estrogen makes you fat, slow, tired and diseased.

The CDC’s view of weight loss also says nothing about checking thyroid levels. According to Dr. Mark Starr, author of Hypothyroidism Type 2 — The Epidemic, a majority of people now have a genetic defect that makes them chronically hypothyroid, and they will spin their wheels trying to lose weight until they incorporate amounts of desiccated thyroid and iodine into their daily routine.

The CDC also says nothing about eliminating high- fructose corn syrup (HFCS) and soda. Various studies have found that HFCS and diet sodas actually trigger the body to pack on the pounds.

Abdominal obesity, defined as having a waist size of about 35 inches for women and 40 inches for men, has been tied to a wide range of health problems, including heart disease, diabetes and high blood pressure. That “tire around the middle” is particularly dangerous because it is different than the fat we use for energy between meals and the fat that pads our organs.

Abdominal fat is stuck deep within the abdominal cavity, and these fat cells tend to produce more hormones and chemical messengers that cause chronic inflammation throughout the body. Storing abdominal fat also causes you to store excess fat in your liver, which makes the liver less able to remove insulin from your bloodstream after it has done its job of driving sugar into your cells. This kind of fat makes you resistant to insulin, and triggers calcium build-up in your arteries.

Dr. A.T.W. Simeons, who pioneered the use of HCG in the 1950s, believed that when hunter-gatherers adapted to agriculture, the body’s mechanisms were thrown out of whack by the need to “binge” three times a day so that people could fulfill the schedule of farm labor. He saw obesity as a symptom of an underlying disorder that resulted from that change in eating.

 

Sources: CDC: National Center for Chronic Disease Prevention and Health Promotion and Reuters: “Obesity rates remain disturbingly high. September 21, 2010.

Reprinted from AzNetNews, Volume 30, Number 5, October/November 2011.


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