Yeah, you heard me. I was reading Time.com (companion website to my favorite left-slanted magazine, Time), and an article made my non-existent eyebrows raise. Is It O.K. to Be Pudgy? I’ve been told my entire pudgy life that it is NOT okay to be pudgy on any plane of existence. California and England are full of non-pudgy people. We strive to be fit and healthy, both physically and emotionally. (My ex-boyfriend, Jason, argues that for each year you live in California, you need two in therapy to stamp the California-ness out of you.) Through high school I was thin because of ballet and sports, but once I quit my activities when I graduated, I filled out. In the span of five years, I went from a size 4 to a size 10. Pre-cancer, I was 5’6″, 185 lbs (American size 12), the largest I have ever been.
So, that’s pudgy, I’d say. I really regret ever getting that large, and I know I can attribute it to nervous eating, poor exercise habits, and study-eating. One winter, for finals, I ate three pounds of sweedish fish and another two pounds of peachy o’s, simply because I didn’t think. Bad idea on my part. I think I gained eight pounds or so in the span of a week. Of course, cancer treatments have me down to a svelt 155 lbs, and back in a size 8-10. I actually feel better being thinner. I know that it won’t last, and I’ll have to start working out right when I’m allowed to after I’m in remission, but things are looking up.
This article begins with this statement: “A study from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention (CDC) had just concluded that folks who are overweight but not obese are at no greater risk of dying prematurely than people of normal weight.” Sure, okay, I can agree with that. But what about all the other risks associated with being heavy? Like, strained joints, type-II diabetes, a greater risk of heart problems, etc? The Center for Consumer Freedom wants us to be fat. According to sourcewatch.org,
“The Center for Consumer Freedom (CCF) (formerly called the “Guest Choice Network”) is a front group for the restaurant, alcohol and tobacco industries. It runs media campaigns which oppose the efforts of scientists, doctors, health advocates, environmentalists and groups like Mothers Against Drunk Driving, calling them “the Nanny Culture — the growing fraternity of food cops, health care enforcers, anti-meat activists, and meddling bureaucrats who ‘know what’s best for you.’ “
Wow. Makes me really care what they have to say. Here is a sample advertisement that the CCF has spent $600,000. Another part of their website has the quote, “…But [our founding fathers] never dreamed that anyone would someday attempt to strip the American people of the fundamental freedom to control what we eat and drink.” What scientists and consequently, our government, are trying to do is save our country and health care companies from having to foot the bill of thousands upon thousands of Americans who have problems they wouldn’t have had if they were thin. “What the CDC scientists did not conclude–despite the many sound bites to the contrary–is that a little excess weight will help you live longer or that plump folks are any healthier,” Time magazine also noted.
So, I guess Time has told us that, while a few extra pounds won’t kill you, they don’t recommend it. I heartily agree.
On a separate note, the only propaganda I can agree with on the CCF website is their pro-hotdog campaign. I love hotdogs (in moderation). I think real, honest to goodness hotdogs are horrible for you. They contain all sorts of shite you don’t even know about. But, lean hotdogs, or all beef hotdogs, or even tofu dogs, are okay for you. Of course, I have a hotdog toaster, so what does that say about me? (While I was looking at the Kmart website for the hotdog toaster I purchased, I found a BETTER TOASTER. Holy crap, it has Cinderella on it, it burns a glass slipper on your toast, and it plays a waltz when it’s done. I gotta buy me one of those.)