September 10, 2012

"[D]on’t do me any favors. The last thing I need is someone telling me it’s okay to be fat."

Says a fat man, objecting to the following emergent dogma:
Telling fat people they ought to be thin is about as helpful as telling gay people they should be straight. It took many decades for the medical establishment to recognize that its “cures” for “homosexuality” did far more damage than the imaginary disease to which they were addressed, and that the biggest favor it could do for gay people was to stop harassing them. Fat people are still waiting for the same favor.
Let's bring in Ricky Gervais:

I heard someone on the radio once say that they were tired of the prejudice aimed at the overweight. They said something like "you're not allowed to make fun of gay people, so why are you allowed to make fun of fat people? It's the same thing."

It's not the same thing though, is it? Gay people are born that way. They didn't work at becoming gay. Fat people became fat because they would rather be that way than stop eating so much. They had to eat and eat to get fat. Then, when they were fat they had to keep up the eating to stay fat. For gayness to be the same as fatness, gay people would have to start off straight but then ween themselves onto cock. Soon they're noshing all day getting gayer and gayer. They've had more than enough cock... they're full... they're just sucking for the sake of it. Now they're overgay, and frowned upon by people who can have the occasional cock but not over indulge.

When a doctor tells me that that's how you become gay, I'll stop making jokes about fat people.

148 comments:

Andy R. said...

What we need is a society that partners with us in our weight loss, not a society that supports our obesity.

I think it's pretty clear that fat-shaming doesn't actually help anyone lose weight.

Dante said...

Can we make HIV jokes about gays then? There are some parallels with fat people. Like, you may be born gay, but you can use condoms. And require people sticking it in you to use condoms. It's really not that hard to stop it.

Bob Ellison said...

What Andy R. said.

Andy R. said...

Also, while people might be responsible for their initial weight gain, it is extremely difficult to lose weight once someone is over-weight. This New York Times Magazine article is a great introduction to the science of long term weight loss, "The Fat Trap"

And when someone puts on the weight as a child, especially when pushed to do so by parents and coaches, it's hard to find them personally culpable.

Michael said...

Gervais' explanation of why people get and stay fat is simply not true. People get fat because they eat the wrong things. See Gary Taubes' Why We Get Fat. What people need is education, not ridicule.

Kit said...

Shaming, in any context, is waste of time. The target of the shame becomes more obstinate and the 'shamer' gets a temporarily inflated ego.

MikeR said...

Unbelievable. Is he unaware of the vast amount of evidence that fat people got that way because they are genetically disposed to do so, not by choice? Because their bodies and brains push them into eating too much? It's exactly like gay people.

Jay said...

It took many decades for the medical establishment to recognize that its “cures” for “homosexuality” did far more damage than the imaginary disease to which they were addressed

Really?

When did this happen?

Darcy said...

Oh, boy. These fat discussions are always fun here.

Roll the compassion.

EMD said...

And when someone puts on the weight as a child, especially when pushed to do so by parents and coaches, it's hard to find them personally culpable.

IASEF.

Shouting Thomas said...

The "prejudice" model is worn out.

The "gays were made that way" is about the fifth shift in the prescribed ideology in my lifetime.

It's bullshit. Just about as bullshit as all the other things I was supposed to believe.

30 years ago, I was supposed to believe the exact opposite and I was a "bigot" if I didn't.

Andy is a scam artist, like that Fluke character who wants the Fed to pony up for her birth control.

Shouting Thomas said...

It took many decades for the medical establishment to recognize that its “cures” for “homosexuality” did far more damage than the imaginary disease to which they were addressed.

Yeah, that was a hell of lot worse than AIDS!

Bob Ellison said...

IAS!

AllieOop said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Jay said...

Great, so being fat is now an event that just happens to you.

Which of course explains the rise in lapband surgery and why people are thinner afterwards.

AllieOop said...

Andy, you are so right.

Once that layer of fat is there, it secretes many substances, so many so, that endocrinologists are considering fat as another endocrine gland. Once one becomes insulin and leptin resistant, it's a runaway train.

There are so many factors that keep fat people fat, until they discover ways in which to reverse it and keep it off, one of which is weight loss surgery, another is changing the WAY they eat to keep insulin levels steady and reign in appetite, they will remain fat and usually go on to Metabolic Syndrome and it's co morbidities.

Shouting Thomas said...

No, Allie, the fat is caused by the lazy lifestyle of the modern U.S.

Very few Filipinos who live in the Philippines are fat. In fact, most of them are thin as reeds.

Move them to the U.S. and start them on an American diet and, voila!, they get fat.

Kids don't do manual labor any more. I did a lot of manual labor and sports when I was a kid.

Ann Althouse said...

"I think it's pretty clear that fat-shaming doesn't actually help anyone lose weight."

What is the evidence that makes that clear? I've noticed that people have gotten fatter during the time since the "fat acceptance" movement began.

I don't like anyone being unkind to anyone about this either, and I support etiquette on the subject, but I do question whether the move away from personal responsibility for one's weight, toward medicalizing and requiring acceptance, hasn't made it worse.

Obviously, people are born with different tendencies and it's much harder to avoid being overweight for some people than others, but the causation from eating too much can't be denied.

kentuckyliz said...

If there was a test for the gay gene, then pregnant moms could abort their gay kids. NARAL won't stand up against gendercide (sex selective abortion against females) so this should be perfectly OK then.

Caloric abundance is a rare and unusual condition in human history, and we're not wired for it.

Ann Althouse said...

Re Taubes... I agree that eating the wrong things (including almost everything served in restaurants) is central to the problem. But if you eat little enough, you will lose weight. When food is scarce, people can starve eating only bread. With our access to food, eating all that sugar and starch is a horrible problem, and the best way to lose weight is probably not trying to cut back on portion size. It's better to go low-carb.

To expect Ricky Gervais to explain carbs....

kentuckyliz said...

If you can't get a job in Obama's Economy, become morbidly obese (BMI 30 or higher) and go on Social Security Disability.

I suppose that's less heinous than committing murder so you can go to prison for your three hots and a cot.

Ann Althouse said...

"If there was a test for the gay gene, then pregnant moms could abort their gay kids. NARAL won't stand up against gendercide (sex selective abortion against females) so this should be perfectly OK then."

It's very common to abort because of Down Syndrome. There's very little talk of that. Even if we accept gay people who are born, I think we can expect that if there is a prenatal test for gayness, women will abort. You can be completely accepting of a characteristic in a born person and still not want to forgo the option to have a do-over if you see it in an abortable unborn.

Balfegor said...

re: Andy R:

I think it's pretty clear that fat-shaming doesn't actually help anyone lose weight.

Where it's effective is in deterring people from gaining weight at the start, when it's easiest to cut back -- that's how it seems to work in Japan/Korea, at least, where the social pressure to be thin is vicious.

edutcher said...

Fat is a defense mechanism. People eat because they're bored or other personality defects.

And warning people of the dangers of overweight (and I've said such things to the Blonde on occasion and, though she gives me a dirty look, she still agrees) is doing them a service.

Not doing so, being PC, is like putting a gun to their heads.

PS I didn't know there were medical remedies to homosexuality.

Psychiatric and religious, maybe, but not medical.

Matthew Sablan said...

I'll be honest: the worst thing to happen to my attempts at losing weight was leaving college and working a desk job. But, I also know that weight is not incredibly simple. But, the simplest solution is usually: Do more, eat less. It gets more complicated (what should you do, what do you mean by less), etc., but that's at least a good starting point.

Ann Althouse said...

Women will talk about their doubts about their own ability to handle the matter. They'll frame it in terms of altruism. (Compare the way people talked about Sarah Palin's decision to have a child with "special needs." How arrogant and ignorant to think that you can meet "special needs.")

AllieOop said...

Shouting Thomas, whatever the cause of obesity, my point is that once an obese person's fat layer has reached critical mass so to speak, it's become an organ that changes a healthy individual into an unhealthy one with hormones like insulin, leptin and ghrelin completely out of whack. That is what causes Metabolic Syndrome.

Ann Althouse said...

"There are so many factors that keep fat people fat, until they discover ways in which to reverse it and keep it off, one of which is weight loss surgery...."

Weight loss surgery... that's a strange term. The person still has to eat less. You're just creating a mechanism to make it harder to eat. It's the eating less that loses the weight.

By the way, Gervais's routine talks about the surgery.

Bob Ellison said...

"I think it's pretty clear that fat-shaming doesn't actually help anyone lose weight."

What is the evidence that makes that clear?


I guess maybe there are no studies. Maybe no pseudo-social-scientist has writtern a dissertation. (Actually, someone probably has.)

But Professor, shaming is a vector. It works sometimes. Shaming people for having sex before marriage worked for a long time, for example, though it's difficult to divorce that vector from unintended pregnancy.

In general, though, the human experience suggests that shame is a negative vector: it creates sadness and unintended consequences in greater degree than the intended consequences. Shaming a young student for not trying hard tends to push that student away from trying hard. Shaming a gay person for being gay tends to push that person toward self-destructive behavior.

AllieOop said...

Also, not only does external fat cause hormonal changes, internal fat attached to vital organs is even more destructive.

Shouting Thomas said...

Guitar player in the Old Dawgz, Big Joe, weight 280 when I started playing with him.

When he retired, he started riding his bicycle 30 to 40 miles per day, and counting calories.

He now weights about 160. He can afford to forget the calorie counting once a week or so.

The "it's difficult" stuff doesn't move me. It's a decision. If you decide to eat more than you expend in energy, you get fat.

Dante said...

I'm tired of "special groups" being exempt from the general group tendencies that go along with the group. Fat people are fat because they consume more calories than they burn off. It's really that simple. Like any addiction, it's hard to change behavior, but guess what? Life is hard.

Gays with HIV get that way because they don't use proper protection. Let's take that one for the moment. If there had been a very strong campaign of ridiculing gays for not using condoms, perhaps HIV would have become endemic in the US.

I am now fat, and I got that way over the last ten years. Without the stereotype of how disgusting fat is, who knows how much more I would have ballooned up?

What would happen if the mores of the 1950s were still there regarding out of wedlock childbirth? Maybe the country would be better off, with fewer single Moms, and maybe gangs wouldn't be so prevalent in LA.

Now, I'm not talking about the racial stereotypes, though there are some cultural ones that seem to fit well. Maybe some of these things are society's defense mechanism against aberrant behavior, and perhaps they are good (note, I think many homosexuals are what they are due to genetics, but not all, as evidenced by the increased likelihood of homosexuality in those sexually accosted by men as children).

Ann Althouse said...

"If you can't get a job in Obama's Economy, become morbidly obese (BMI 30 or higher) and go on Social Security Disability."

Thanks for that link.

I know they want to move people onto SSI as the solution to unemployment, but people getting fat and then avoiding work? The safety net is too comfortable.

Tank said...

Thank you for some sanity Ann.

For others, please stop the BS. I was fat. When I was 20 I was 50+ pounds overweight. I decided that I hated being fat. One reason was the jokes and comments people made about fat people and, occassionally, me, in particular.

I started to eat less. Mostly no special diet, just less. I exercized about the same, which was some, not a great deal. Over a few years I lost 50 pounds and kept it off for almost 40 years now.

I have a tendency to be fat. If I eat too much, I quickly start to have a belly. So I eat less. Just stand in front of a mirror naked. You'll know if you need to eat less.

Shaming. More bullshit. If people were shamed because of being fat, we would likely have less fat people. The same can be said of teenage pregnancy, men who don't support their wives and children, etc.

Seeing Red said...

-- Because their bodies and brains push them into eating too much? It's exactly like gay people.--

Not according to Dr. Gary Taubes.

It's the modified wheat that triggers the eating response.

Darcy said...

That was well said, Althouse.

I agree that there is a fine line between compassion and a sort of encouragement here.

Being fat is for the most part a very miserable way to live. Miserable. I've lived it. Every time I see a fat person I feel compassion for them. I know how hard it is to change, and how few people actually do successfully keep weight off once they've lost. I take every opportunity I get to offer any insight I have. It's a long, long, road for a lot of people. You don't know how difficult it is unless you've been there.

Andy R. said...

I know they want to move people onto SSI as the solution to unemployment

Who is the "they" in that sentence?

AllieOop said...

Yes Ann, exactly. When their stomach are the size of a thumb, they are forced to eat less and cannot tolerate highly starchy or sweet foods. Diabetic WLS patients are cured of diabetes in mere days after surgery, because of removal of a great portion of the omentum.

WLS encompasses all the gastric bypass surgeries, it's a common term.

The Farmer said...

Andy R. said...
think it's pretty clear that fat-shaming doesn't actually help anyone lose weight.


"Fat-shaming." You are a delight!

caplight45 said...

I used to be fat and them Michelle Obama became the FLOTUS and the pounds have just melted away. She is my inspiration for healthy eating, back yard gardening and making kids play outdoors.

EMD said...

The safety net is too comfortable.

Don't worry, one way or another, it will break.

Balfegor said...

Re: Bob Ellison:

In general, though, the human experience suggests that shame is a negative vector: it creates sadness and unintended consequences in greater degree than the intended consequences. Shaming a young student for not trying hard tends to push that student away from trying hard.

I, what? You probably have more experience than I, but that has not been my experience. In fact, I'd say that as a student, shame and the fear of shame was a stronger motivator for me than almost any other emotion.

elkh1 said...

"The safety net is too comfortable."

Who do you think these "comfortable" people are going to vote for? Part of his "no-hope divide and conquer" re-election plan.

jr565 said...

I think some people are born that way (fat). So ricky gervais is wrong.

Granted there is some degree of truth in that many fat people can slim down, so it doesn't have to be a permanent condition, necessarily (though everyone knows how hard it is to actually lose weight). But due to many people metabolism they are prone to morbid obesity.

Also, what is the ideal weight? There is morbidly obese, but then there is overweight. If you're not morbidly obese, are you actually unhealthy? The juries still out on that.

Darcy said...

I think the surgery is a terrible option, by the way. I've seen two people I know lose massive amounts of weight that way and then put most of it back on. One of them suffered a stroke after the surgery and is now permanently affected cognitively.

I think it should be a very, very rare option.

Shouting Thomas said...

Allie,

Those stomach band surgeries cost $50,000!

kentuckyliz said...

How to motivate people?

My sister's employer charges employees variable rates for their employee contribution for health care premiums based on their health stats.

My sister's numbers are all good except her weight. She hasn't been in the normal range since childhood. She is healthy, never any major illnesses or injuries, she's strong as all get-out as a farm wife who does chores, she would be an icon in the Workers' Revolution. We can do it! But she can't quite get her BMI into the healthy range.

She's been trying like mad since this incentive system was set up. If she can get there, she can give herself a significant raise.

My normal BMI is laughable. It's below my college athlete weight. Even as a college athlete, I hardly felt like a woman. I was a bean pole and not feminine or curvy at all. About two dress sizes over my normal weight, and I feel like a woman, and look like one, too.

Don't make me be a bean pole.

The BMI has limitations and shortcomings.

And the epidemiological evidence shows some protective factors in having a BMI of 25-29 for adults age 25 or older. You know, starting at that age when your metabolism starts slowing down. Amazing how that works! It's like God/Mother Nature knew what s/he was doing!

In the Obamacare 2.0 world, you will pay for what the regime says is unhealthy, through scaled rates. Plus you will pay for everyone else's health care. The fully subsidized of course don't have to pay anything, but that's where the rationing rules kick in. If you don't behave the way the regime wants you to, then you get sick, your application for treatment is more likely to be denied. If you are not a good steward of your body, you are not approved. Heck, Michelle Obama scolded an Olympic gold medalist gymnast over celebrating her win with an EGG MCMUFFIN.

Where is the outcry?! That was a dog whistle! Everybody knows Black people like McDonald's. Even if you didn't know any Black people, you could infer that from the commercials.

Is it racist to capitalize Black?

Ooops I blew the dog whistle.

Ah well, we are all racists. The habituation continues.

Beta Rube said...

I am about 10 pounds away from having dropped 100lbs. Allie and others are correct, restricting carbs and ramping up exercise (lots of walking) were the only effective way for me.

I do have great sympathy for the very large folks who can barely get around and roll through the grocery stores in motorized carts, but, similiar to alchoholism (hello!) this is a disease wherein the patient decides when to get well.

Bob Ellison said...

Tank said: "Shaming. More bullshit. If people were shamed because of being fat, we would likely have less fat people. The same can be said of teenage pregnancy, men who don't support their wives and children, etc."

True. Does that make shaming a good vehicle? If we ordered police to shoot on sight anyone who uttered a verbal threat, that would lead to fewer murders. Good idea?

Shaming is a stupid, antiquated concept. Get past it.

Balfegor, I, too, experienced shame as a motivator. I hated it and hate it today. Don't you? Are you glad that someone shamed you?

t-man said...

When you say "safety net" I'm sure you picture something like a flat net under a highwire. I see a fishing net, used to trap the unwary and keep them from getting away.

On the fat issue, I think it is far more complicated than the public health establishment will admit. Gary Taubes is on the right track generally, but I'll guess that population groups developed different responses to the different foods available to them, or the seasonal lack thereof. Now, we are all mixed up genentically so it is difficult to figure out our best diet. I don't think averaging in this case helps - it really is an individual issue.

Unknown said...

everyone seems to think that cigarette shaming does wonders?

we should have pictures of ultra-fat people on sugar, cookies, ice cream, soda cans, fast food happy meals, etc.

I think nothing anyone says or does will stop someone from smoking, drinking, drugs, gambling or being fat.

There is help out there for all of the above but ultimately the person has to want the help. I was over 300lbs and I've lost over 80lbs and kept it off. sure I go up some but I got back to where I got the help and get it back off.

jr565 said...

Ann althouse wrote:
Weight loss surgery... that's a strange term. The person still has to eat less. You're just creating a mechanism to make it harder to eat. It's the eating less that loses the weight.

also, there are a lot of potential problems with the surgery. I know someone who had the surgery and developed bleeding ulcers where the surgery took place and had to be rushed to the hospital on multiple occasions because she was shitting blood. She was morbidly obese prior to the surgery, but was she close to having a heart attack? I don't think so. If. She stayed at that weight it would probably be worse down the line.

Darcy said...

Well done, Beta Rube!

AllieOop said...

I think that losing weight via a low carb diet is much preferable to weight loss surgery, but there are some folks who cannot stick to low carb, are metabolically deranged already and continue getting fatter. WLS has been a life saver for these people. Many more positive outcomes than negative.

jr565 said...

-cont- but in retrospect the surgery was probably a big mistake.

Tyrone Slothrop said...

I can't believe what an asshole Ricky Gervais is. David Brent, Gervais's character in the British The Office was an insensitive egotistical douche. Incredibly Ricky Gervais is a a bigger jerk than David Brent. Every pronouncement by Gervais is offensive, and not in a way that can be laughed off. His humor is based on cruelty and nothing else.

Shouting Thomas said...

Amazingly, the left (and Andy) think that constantly shaming and scolding people about racism, sexism and homophobia will produce their desired result.

Although, I'm not sure what that "desired result" might be.

Andy is one of the worst scolds I've run across. He uses shame insistently and constantly.

edutcher said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Tank said...

Bob Ellison equates shaming people with shooting them. Oy. Moron.

I am GLAD people made me feel ashamed of being fat. It was something well within my power to fix [although very difficult]. Shame was one part of the motivation for working hard to take responsibility for my own weight. Shame helped me to improve my appearance and health. Looking and feeling good helped me [and others] in almost every aspect of our lives.

kentuckyliz said...

It's very common to abort because of Down Syndrome. There's very little talk of that. Even if we accept gay people who are born, I think we can expect that if there is a prenatal test for gayness, women will abort. You can be completely accepting of a characteristic in a born person and still not want to forgo the option to have a do-over if you see it in an abortable unborn.

True. After all, it's the compassionate thing to do. There is a much higher suicide rate among gays. You wouldn't want to give birth to a person who would eventually attempt suicide. That's exposing them to a lot of unnecessary anguish. Might as well be merciful now. It's the loving thing to do.

Isn't that what the richie riches think of poor people? Melinda Gates trying to prevent all those dirty brown poor people in Africa from EXISTING.

And yet Precious knows she is the best mother for her child, even when the social worker is skeptical. The social worker comes around eventually, when she is finally able to perceive her human dignity.

Ann Althouse said...

"I guess maybe there are no studies.... But Professor, shaming is a vector.... In general, though, the human experience suggests that shame is a negative vector..."

Making stuff up is a vector. It's the vector of being able to say anything you feel it's a good idea to be able to say.

Now, excuse me while I get back to reading Supreme Court cases.

ndspinelli said...

In this PC world it's always open season on fat people.

Here's my question. I see the ads and reports that we have an obesity epidemic in this country, and unless you're blind one has to agree. Then I see the billboards and ads that 1 in 6 go hungry in this country. We know the lower your class the more obese people tend to be. So...who the fuck are these millions of people going hungry?? Let me end by saying I make spaghetti dinner for a local homeless food pantry, and always give canned goods.

clint said...

Totally agree that "The last thing I need is someone telling me it's okay to be fat."

Mostly agree that "fat shaming" can be counterproductive. (It can definitely become excessive.)

And yet, Ricky Gervais is still a complete ass. He clearly has no idea what he's talking about. More importantly, his jokes *really* don't seem like they'd be remotely helpful to anyone struggling with their weight. ("Oh, I should be eating less? I had no idea!")

Count me in as another Gary Taubes success story. I'm down about a hundred pounds, from 2XLs to "medium". (When did Mediums become so large? Did I miss a big round of vanity sizing changes while I was obese?) And my self control hasn't changed. I'm the same guy who would wake up at 3 AM and get dressed to go to the local convenience store for a pint of Ben and Jerry's -- I just don't have anything like the same cravings on a low carb diet.

Shouting Thomas: "
The "gays were made that way" is about the fifth shift in the prescribed ideology in my lifetime."

I'm curious. In your opinion, how does someone become gay?

edutcher said...

Tank said...

I started to eat less. Mostly no special diet, just less. I exercized about the same, which was some, not a great deal. Over a few years I lost 50 pounds and kept it off for almost 40 years now.

That's the only real way, BTW.

Andy R. said...

I know they want to move people onto SSI as the solution to unemployment

Who is the "they" in that sentence?


Your Messiah, the First Lesbian President, for openers.

Darcy said...

I think the surgery is a terrible option, by the way. I've seen two people I know lose massive amounts of weight that way and then put most of it back on. One of them suffered a stroke after the surgery and is now permanently affected cognitively.

That's what happened to the woman The Blonde was helping care for. She died a couple of weeks ago.

Her sister had the other type of surgery (there are basically 2, IIRC), but she followed all the rules, has lost about 150 pounds, and is doing fine.

The surgery, in and of itself, does not seem to be a magic bullet.

Dave said...

"Shouting Thomas said...
Yeah, that was a hell of lot worse than AIDS!"

What a stupid comment. HIV/AIDS is NOT a gay disease. But, as you said, you were a bigot "thirty" years ago and it sounds like you're still one now.

ndspinelli said...

It's impossible to shame narcissists to be normal.

Balfegor said...

Re: Bob Ellison:

Don't you? Are you glad that someone shamed you?

Yes. I'm not a little child anymore -- now, I am deeply thankful for it.

Bob Ellison said...

Making stuff up is a vector. It's the vector of being able to say anything you feel it's a good idea to be able to say.

Well, it's your blog. You don't have to comment on what commenters say. But you're surfing here rhetorically. Not up to your normal standard.

Paddy O said...

"I know they want to move people onto SSI as the solution to unemployment, but people getting fat and then avoiding work? The safety net is too comfortable."

It didn't work out for Homer Simpson.

Shouting Thomas said...

What a stupid comment. HIV/AIDS is NOT a gay disease.

You are a fucking liar.

Kirk Parker said...

Balfegor,

"... where the social pressure to be thin is enormous."

FIFY.

Shouting Thomas said...

So, if shame doesn't work, what in the fuck were all those Diversity seminars about?

Shouting Thomas said...

I'm curious. In your opinion, how does someone become gay?

I'd say that that is individual, and not accountable to some theory.

bandmeeting said...

Darcy said,"I think the surgery is a terrible option, by the way.

It is but we no longer take much personal responsibility in this country. We get a diagnosis from a doctor and no longer ask what we might do to reverse the condition, rather, "Ya got a pill (or surgery) to fix that?"

If I locked an overweight person in a room and they were only allowed to eat what I gave them (full on, by the book Paleo) they would lose weight. If they happened to be gay, I'm pretty sure their gayness would emerge from the room along with their fabulous new body.

furious_a said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
elkh1 said...

Balfegor: "shame and the fear of shame was a stronger motivator"

Without shame, a 30 years old student is proud to let the world know she screws around and demands others to pay for her condoms; without shame, men and women take vacations with their welfare checks, disability checks; without shame, a high cheek boned woman claimed minority status for advancements, takes Wall Street money and launches fake attacks on Wall Street; without shame, politicians and media hacks accuse critics of racism when they have no arguments; without shame, doctors gave fake notes to teachers with fake illnesses for their fake "for the children" protests.

Shouting Thomas said...

When the social shaming of gays ceased in NYC and SF, the immediate result was...

the AIDS epidemic.

I was there. Let the lying commence.

kentuckyliz said...

Shaming is trying to trigger a shame mechanism in someone else.

Our shame triggers have deep roots and we will do ANYTHING to avoid bringing those shames to light.

Shaming = you are untrustworthy and I cannot be transparent with you.

Congratulations on building barriers and destroying authenticity.

And yes, the Brits are expert at shame, shaming, and distancing.

If you have identified a learning edge around this topic, look up Brené Brown on TED Talks/You Tube.

MadisonMan said...

Okay, I won't tell you it's okay that you're fat.

You're just fat. NTTAWWT.

I lost 12 pounds this summer, maybe 13. Ate less, biked more. Now that it's fall, I can't bike as often. We'll see if the weight stays off.

furious_a said...

BetaRube: I do have great sympathy for the very large folks who...roll through the grocery stores in motorized carts...

So do I, until I see their equally obese children and/or spouses in tow and what is in their grocery carts.

MayBee said...

Ricky Gervais has recently lost quite a bit of weight. So I do think he knows a little bit about what he's talking about.

Curious George said...

"Dave said...
What a stupid comment. HIV/AIDS is NOT a gay disease." Well, not anymore anyway. Thanks gays.

Cedarford said...

Dante said...
Can we make HIV jokes about gays then? There are some parallels with fat people. Like, you may be born gay, but you can use condoms. And require people sticking it in you to use condoms. It's really not that hard to stop it
=========================
The Health and Safety Nazis are not on that case. See, gays are in a victim group. It would be like saying no more fried chicken for welfare mommas and their fatherless baby Orcas could be obtained with food stamps. Only CERTAIN people not of certified victim groups can be publicly berated. Otherwise, criticism of lifestyle could be seen as racist and homophobic.


But the tendency of sanctioning public scolds is becoming more and more common.

My son had a big picnic and BBQ bash last year and encountered such a health nazi scold. One of his college friends who was a sometimes vegetarian had recently married. Turns out the gal was a militant ovo-lactarian or such. Who in the name of "educating people" and "trying to save their lives" - busied herself at the picnic telling people eating "roasted and burnt sugared flesh" they were going to live less long and likely get cancer from burgers and hotdogs.

Daughter in law told the guy to shut her up, let others enjoy the get together....or leave.

Not knowing anything about this, I was treated to the last act. Where the cars were parked to this guy dragging a woman off screaming about stupid people, and if anyone should leave it should be stupid fat people killing themselves and their children. And she was proclaiming she was not a 2nd class citizen...just educating the ignorant. Who should have been the ones that should have been told to leave.

Obviously, I was curious and learned "the rest of the story".


I think there was an incident in my state about 5 years back where a large pregnant woman decked (really decked, like broken nose and two black eyes sort of one punch decking) a new waitress that refused to get a glass of wine for her...Sympathy was with the pregnant woman because the waitress was the one disrupting the diners with "How dare you expose your baby to alcohol!"

Owner, according to the story, fired the waitress on her return from the ER.

Valentine Smith said...

No one has ever been arrested for fat driving.

Shouting Thomas said...

So, as the lefties here have made clear, the real issue isn't whether shaming works...

The issue is who should be shamed.

OK to shame racists, sexists and homophobes.

Not OK to shame fat asses.

kentuckyliz said...

Maybe we should shame the shamers.

Shame on you for shaming!

clint said...


(I asked): I'm curious. In your opinion, how does someone become gay?


Shouting Thomas said...
I'd say that that is individual, and not accountable to some theory.

I respond:

Um... And yet you seemed certain (at 9:26) that no gay men were just "made that way". Isn't it possible that some individuals went through adolescence and discovered a slightly different set of strange new feelings to be all awkward and embarrassed about?

If you categorically exclude that possibility... isn't that "some theory" you're imposing on gayness?

Shouting Thomas said...

And yet you seemed certain (at 9:26) that no gay men were just "made that way".

No, I didn't say that.

Expat(ish) said...

Well, ok, I lost 70 lbs over the last two years, and while I am fit, I have a desk job and a wife and daughter who bake.

And while I live in a state that mandates inexpensive college, it was still hard to spend 8 years working my way through school.

I tend to use myself as a base: if I can do it, almost anyone else can too.

I think a lot of what people like to believe is external forces holding them down (society, their genes) are really internal urges improperly controlled.

Practice, practice, practice.

-XC

I Callahan said...

I've noticed that people have gotten fatter during the time since the "fat acceptance" movement began.

Coincidentally, that's the same time that the "fat shaming" movement was going on.

clint said...

Shouting Thomas-

My apologies then. I must have misunderstood your first comment.

clint said...

I've noticed that people have gotten fatter during the time since the "fat acceptance" movement began.


Coincidentally, that's the same time that the "fat shaming" movement was going on.


And the explosion of "low fat" foods and high fructose corn syrup.

(Also the internet -- clearly it's something to do with all those fiber optic cables making us fat.)

This is why correlation is not the gold standard in any serious scientific field.

Which, in turn, is why nutrition is not a serious scientific field.

Tyrone Slothrop said...

The Big Lie:

Dave said...

What a stupid comment. HIV/AIDS is NOT a gay disease. But, as you said, you were a bigot "thirty" years ago and it sounds like you're still one now


The truth, via the Center for Disease Control:

Gay, bisexual, and other men who have sex with men (MSM)1 represent approximately 2% of the US population, yet are the population most severely affected by HIV. In 2009, MSM accounted for 61% of all new HIV infections, and MSM with a history of injection drug use (MSM-IDU) accounted for an additional 3% of new infections. That same year, young MSM accounted for 69% of new HIV infections among persons aged 13–29 and 44% of infections among all MSM. At the end of 2009, an estimated 441,669 (56%) persons living with an HIV diagnosis in the US were MSM or MSM-IDU.


You can call a pig a princess, but it will still be a pig.

Shouting Thomas said...

I am ASHAMED to say that I have wasted most of the morning on this shit.

Shame on you, Althouse, for dragging me in.

Time to go to work.

I Callahan said...

This is why correlation is not the gold standard in any serious scientific field. Which, in turn, is why nutrition is not a serious scientific field.

True.

Personally, I think it's innate in ALL of us to get fat, based on today's society's lack of physical activity. We're hard-wired to be hunters/gatherers; at one time humans had to chase their food to be able to eat. That'll keep you skinny.

I guess the human race hasn't evolved yet. Maybe in 1000 years, people will develop a resistance to high carbs that will not force us to gain weight when eating such carbs.

That doesn't do anything for today's society, however.

Saint Croix said...

It's very common to abort because of Down Syndrome. There's very little talk of that.

Yes, that's right. I think it's berhaps we are ashamed of what we do.

Even if we accept gay people who are born, I think we can expect that if there is a prenatal test for gayness, women will abort.

The Museum has a page for that, too.

You can be completely accepting of a characteristic in a born person and still not want to forgo the option to have a do-over if you see it in an abortable unborn.

You're reducing people to a characteristic and removing them from our society. Even if it's not a homicide, this rhetoric is

ugly and vile.

Bender said...

Gay people are born that way. They didn't work at becoming gay.

The whole "gays are born that way while fat people aren't" thing is an example of fallacious and sleight-of-hand reasoning.

A man engaging in sexual activity with another man is just as much a voluntary act as is a man eating too much food. No man is born in sexual joinder with another man. It is a chosen act.

Now, it may or may not be true that a person's sexual desires and temptations are not entirely voluntary, just as one's appetite for food might not be completely voluntary. But both still possess the free choice of the will to engage in the respective behavior or not.

We do same-sex attracted people no favors by essentially dehumanizing them with this specious argument that they lack free will.

David said...

Americans are drawing from pretty much the same gene pool is we did 24, 40 and 60 years ago. People have been getting progressively fatter over that time. It ain't the genes that are doing this/

Brian O'Connell said...

Being fat is quite a bit like being gay actually. There's a genetic pre-dispostion, which is then mediated by environmental factors.

If you don't have the genetic pre-disposition, it's quite easy to put all of it on behavior and "free will", as a previous thread had it.

"It's easy for *me* to be straight and thin- I don't know what their problem is. Must be character flaws and/or personality defects."

Ann Althouse: "It's the eating less that loses the weight."

This is at best controversial, at worst, it represents an over-simplified, stone-age view of nutrition and how the body deals with scarcity. The body is homeostatic- it actively resists changes. This is why most diets fail.

MayBee said...

We do same-sex attracted people no favors by essentially dehumanizing them with this specious argument that they lack free will.

I think they have as much free will as heterosexuals, and should use that free will to engage in sex with the person to whom they are attracted, just as heterosexuals do.

Bender said...

We do same-sex attracted people no favors by essentially dehumanizing them with this specious argument that they lack free will.

And we doubly dehumanize them and disrespect them with the corresponding argument that same-sex attracted people lack the ability for chastity and sexual self-restraint.

Balfegor said...

Re: Bender:

We do same-sex attracted people no favors by essentially dehumanizing them with this specious argument that they lack free will.

I don't know that it's as bad as all that. Despite our deranged modern obsession with sexuality, one's sexual appetites are not that important, in the grand scheme of things, and they are one of those things we have very little control over. We can, of course, control whether we indulge those appetites or not, so the notion that the appetites themselves are inborn doesn't diminish our humanity at all.

Of course, people these days like to talk as though it's impossible to restrain one's appetites, and that humans -- young humans in particular -- are ravaging animals of lust who cannot be expected to exercise any restraint. But that's just silly talk.

Think said...

"While the findings from Proietto and colleagues, published this fall in The New England Journal of Medicine, are not conclusive — the study was small and the findings need to be replicated — the research has nonetheless caused a stir in the weight-loss community, adding to a growing body of evidence that challenges conventional thinking about obesity, weight loss and willpower. For years, the advice to the overweight and obese has been that we simply need to eat less and exercise more. While there is truth to this guidance, it fails to take into account that the human body continues to fight against weight loss long after dieting has stopped. This translates into a sobering reality: once we become fat, most of us, despite our best efforts, will probably stay fat."

http://www.nytimes.com/2012/01/01/magazine/tara-parker-pope-fat-trap.html?_r=1&pagewanted=all

I Callahan said...

Americans are drawing from pretty much the same gene pool is we did 24, 40 and 60 years ago. People have been getting progressively fatter over that time. It ain't the genes that are doing this

Actually, that bolsters my point.

We are more sedentary; that's what's happened in the last 60 years or so. We weren't built for that. Getting fat is a natural, genetic side effect. Maybe we can evolve out of it, maybe not.

I Callahan said...

Brian O'Connell absolutely nails it.

William said...

On those rare occasions when I count my blessings instead of contemplating how unfair life has been, I give thanks for being incorrigibly skinny. My skinniness is based simply on metabolism and has nothing to do with character or moderation. I know some fat people and, so far as I can tell, I eat more than them.....When I was an adolescent, I had bubonic acne. It was truly awful. A face like pepperoni pizza just out of the oven. I didn't know what I was doing wrong, but I was certain that my acne was secondary to some moral flaw. That's the way these things work. In a way, it's more comforting to think that ugliness has more to do with moral flaws than bad luck. Moral flaws can be corrected but bad luck is ontological.......I think that if brothels were as numerous and well stocked as bakeries that we would all be libertines. It really does take a lot of effort and concentration for a lot of people to keep their weight under control.

Think said...

I have lost 55 pounds following Taubes (low carb). This is after 10 years of being obese. Anyone that thinks obese people simply lack will power and only need to eat less, is ignorant. Nearly every obese person knows that they need to eat less calories, and nearly every obese person tries time and time again to do it.

Althouse is right that you can eat less calories and lose weight. Taubes isn't disputing that. It is obvious by looking at photos of prisoners of war.

The problem? Very few people can stay in a perpetual state of starvation to lose the weight and keep it off. To someone that has a tendency to be lean, this doesn’t make sense. You don’t need to starve yourself to be a healthy weight, they think. But for millions of American’s, that is exactly what it feels like and our bodies will do everything they can to put us back to an obese state. I could always achieve some level of success with low-calorie diets, but eventually I couldn’t take the hunger anymore and the weight crept back up.

That was where Taubes and his low-carb theory regarding insulin changed my life. For the first time, I found out that it wasn’t that I lacked will power (after all, I am a good dad, successful attorney, ran two marathons, and authored a book in my spare time), it was that I needed to eat the right things in order to stop constantly raising my insulin levels. By lowering carbs dramatically, I could eat until I felt satisfied, lose weight, keep muscle mass, and did not feel starving at all.

In one sense, it is about will power. The will power to eat the right things. But it isn’t about the will power not to eat too much. I know many that look down on fat people wouldn’t last a day feeling like they were starving to death. They have no idea what it is like to try it for weeks and months on end (I once made it about 9 months on a 900 calorie diet – I’m a 6’ male).

I just hope more doctors come around to Taube’s ideas and stop feeding their patients the bull about calories in vs. calories out. If I can take the same liberty as Althouse (who observed that there are more fat people since fat acceptance started), then I can say that there are more fat people since the calories in vs. calories out (and low fat) movement started too.

My two cents on shaming – it is especially counterproductive from family members. It always pissed me off and actually made me want to eat more, just to get back at them for being so mean (strange mentality, I know). And it certainly made me hide how much I was actually eating from them (picking up extra food on the way to school or work).

By the way, did anyone ever actually buy into fat acceptance? I heard it a few times (nearly always from fat people), but was that enough to actually take away the stigma and give people a free pass?

Bender said...

It really does take a lot of effort and concentration for a lot of people to keep their weight [or sexuality] under control.

When something that is supposed to be a good becomes a vice, life can be very difficult. Sometimes, being the master of one's life and body and passions, rather than being the slave to them, is pretty near impossible to do on one's own, entirely upon one's own will power. The will itself is impaired.

Sometimes, what is needed is help, what is needed is grace. The problem is that often people do not seek such grace, or even reject it out of hand.

Smilin' Jack said...

Making stuff up is a vector. It's the vector of being able to say anything you feel it's a good idea to be able to say.

Now, excuse me while I get back to reading Supreme Court cases.


I hope the irony was intentional.

Michael said...

I think the Lazy Syndrome is more responsible than the Metabolic Syndrome but that might not give enough causality to the Gorge Syndrome that seems pretty rampant.

Also, we note that when we stopped "judging" people their behavior got worse. Immediately.

BarryD said...

Unchecked capitalism in the food market gives us Doritos, but it ALSO gives us stuff like low-calorie snacks.

The USDA's Food Pyramid bullshit, and the demonization of fat combined with encouragement to eat crap carbohydrates -- BY THE GOVERNMENT -- has contributed a great deal to the incorrect food choices of those who WANT to choose wisely. That includes me.

How about we keep the market for food free enough that we don't get the government-prescribed, special-interest-bribed garbage that helped make us fat. At least, without government mandates and over-regulation, we CAN obtain the right foods, and better information.

BarryD said...

And BTW why in the world would anyone purposely shame fat people?

It's hard to imagine how that could be productive, or how anyone might think it could.

AllieOop said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
AllieOop said...

Exactly right Think. What many people who say" just eat less" don't understand is that appetite is almost impossible to control once the metabolism has become deranged, by becoming leptin and insulin resistant.

When one cuts carbs to less than 50 grams a day and raises fat and keeps protein moderate, the appetite is able to be reigned in and controlled. Therefore eating less calories per day is POSSIBLE. So it IS a combination of low carb and lower calories than produces weight loss.

Every obese person is leptin and insulin resistant, some have not progressed to diabetes yet, but given time, they most likely will. Average weight people also become metabolically affected and develop diabetes and Metabolic Syndrome, but it is far more prevalent in the obese population.

AllieOop said...

Than=that

Freeman Hunt said...

I wonder if there's a difference in the effects of general shaming and specific, personal shaming.

The general shaming of cigarette smoking, among other things, does seem to have helped reduce that behavior. But would saying, "That's disgusting! You're disgusting and irresponsible for smoking like that!" to a smoker have the same effect? I don't think it would. I think that would encourage the person to smoke if only to stick it to the rude, boundary-less person who chided him.

And so I wonder if it's the same with being fat. Saying generally that losing weight is important and talking about how awful it is for one's health to be obese is one thing, general shaming. Maybe that would affect positive change.

Calling individual persons fat and ranting at them to eat less and hop on treadmills, shaming that is specific and personal, perhaps that is different and counterproductive. (It's certainly more rude.)

Or I could be entirely wrong about all of this.

Dante said...

A man engaging in sexual activity with another man is just as much a voluntary act as is a man eating too much food.

Even assuming gays are born that way, most weren't born with HIV. All it takes is a little plastic wrap, and no problemo. So I say, let the HIV jokes begin, along with the fatty jokes. Maybe it's healthier for Americans, and we can get the damn government out of the lunchroom (odd, why they aren't requiring gays to use condoms, but they are forcing the rest of us to eat what they want us to).

Smilin' Jack said...

I think it's pretty clear that fat-shaming doesn't actually help anyone lose weight.

The purpose of fat-shaming is not to help them lose weight, it's to get them to stay out of sight. Not only are they (literally) gross, they block our view of the attractive thin people behind them.

Balfegor said...

Re: Freeman Hunt:

Calling individual persons fat and ranting at them to eat less and hop on treadmills, shaming that is specific and personal, perhaps that is different and counterproductive. (It's certainly more rude.)

I think the rudeness and effectiveness depends on who is doing it. If it's someone who's close to you, then I think it's effective. If it's some completely random stranger on the street pointing his finger at you and calling you fat, then I do think it would be someone counterproductive.

But shaming isn't just about pointing fingers and laughing. When dealing with strangers, it can be just as, if not more, shameful to see people having to take particular care around you, to mince words or actions for fear of offending you. For example, if you're fat enough to require two seats, it's offensive if the airline representative takes a confrontational attitude, calls you fat and demands you buy a second seat. And you can comfortably slip into an oppositional mode yourself and have a yell.

On the other hand, that situation becomes embarassing and shameful if the representative takes an apologetic attitude, ducks his head and explains that he's very sorry but you'll have to purchase a second seat. If you get hot and angry at someone showing a deferential and apologetic attitude, you're the one being an ass; the only socially appropriate response is mutual embarassment and shame.

AllieOop said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
AllieOop said...

Another issue some folks here don't take into account is the so called "laziness" factor. Do you have any idea of what happens to an obese person's body when strenuously exercising? Even moderate and low level exercise is painful and destructive to joints, very hard on the obese heart. Can you imagine carrying a 100+ pound person on your back while walking, much less excersizing?

Many docs and fitness experts recommend water aerobics and very low level exercise for the obese and super obese, waiting until a significant amount of weight is lost before engaging in more strenuous exercise.

Many fitness and obesity specialists are stressing that succesful weight loss is 80% diet related. Fitness can come gradually after the bulk of the weight is lost.

Freeman Hunt said...

My opinion, which is just an educated guess, is that the best exercise for obese people to start with is weight lifting. They're often pretty good at it, it helps retain their muscle mass as they lose weight, and it doesn't have the joint-stressing impact of some other types of exercise.

Think said...

"Many fitness and obesity specialists are stressing that successful weight loss is 80% diet related. Fitness can come gradually after the bulk of the weight is lost."

Exactly right. Before finding Taubes, I was running daily, carrying the extra 55 pounds. I was also trying to restrict calories. I only lost a few pounds after months of this.

In my 20’s, I ran 1.5 hours a day (including two marathons and lots of long runs on the weekend). I did lose some weight, but still was overweight with a belly. I paced my brother on a 100 mile running race, and was shocked at an overweight women that made it to the finish line. The sheer amount of preparation and running that makes it possible to run a 100 mile race is staggering. That someone could prepare and finish a race like that, and still be overweight, really opened my eyes.

It turns out, most studies show that you cannot lose a significant amount of weight by exercise. But people still throw out the idea that obese people are lazy (of course many are – but I know many lazy skinny people too). And your doctor will still tell you to exercise to lose weight. In reality, that only makes you hungrier. The average person ends up eating back more than they burned. So don’t assume that every obese person isn’t working out or sitting on the couch. You can be obese and very active at the same time.

Exercise has great benefits in areas outside of weight loss. But the weight loss needs to come first before it is enjoyable, at least for me. Now that I am 55 pounds down, running if fun again and so much easier to do.

AllieOop said...

Freeman, yes light weights at slow speeds, I've heard that is a great way to start a fitness regimen. Adequate protein intake also prevents muscle loss.

AllieOop said...

Think, it's true that exercise makes one hungrier, that may be one of the reasons it's best to hold off on aerobic exercise until a significant amount of the weight is lost. Walking is equally affective in maintaining fitness and less hard on the joints than running, even at an ideal weight.

Darcy said...

Really good stuff here, Think.

What worked for me was both exercise (running) and limiting carbs. No diet sodas. A lot of water.

I have learned to love to run and now run a minimum of 3 miles a day as fast as I can. I want to stay fit just so that I can continue to run and jump and climb. Fitting in great new small-sized clothes is a great motivator too, but only after I got there.

I have also learned that I probably will always have to watch what I eat very carefully and stay active. I feel like I have to be more vigilant than a person who has never been fat.

AllieOop said...

You do Darcy, so do I and anybody else who has been overweight. The body wants to get back to the highest weight it seems, darn! It's as if those fat cells just can't wait to fill up again and they do, once a person starts eating the same stuff that got them overweight to begin with. I really do believe that this weight gain happens much faster and easier in formerly obese than those who never had a significant weight issue to begin with.

Michael said...

Man you can certainly pick the fatties from their comments here! And the former fatties. But the former fatties have one thing in common with each other; they admit they eat less than before and exercise more than before. This is called the Discipline Syndrome. People who have the Discipline Syndrome know that for certain things to occur you have to suffer for some period before you befin to show progress. Then the progress feels better than the non progress. Discipline Syndrome: you have to work to get it.

Darcy said...

@Michael

Kind of you.

AllieOop said...

Michael, the discipline is much easier to engage in when one isn't starving oneself, the feeling of satiety and less hunger is possible with the correct diet. Then success breeds success and the motivation to do even better is easier.

Balfegor said...

Apropos of nothing, another thing that might help with America's weight problem is some sort of truth-in-labeling effort on clothing sizes. On mens clothing, even though waist sizes for trousers are given in hard inches, these inches are not necessarily the real inches. I suspect there are similar issues with shirt collar sizes (although that might just be because there's differing shrinkage expectations after a few washes). I've no idea how womens' clothing sizes work, but I've read the issue is worse there.

Reducing "vanity sizing" would make it easier for people to catch weight issues early (less "my old clothes all shrank in the wash") long before they become hard to correct.

Brian O'Connell said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Brian O'Connell said...

Nice recent posts from William and Think. And thanks I Callahan!

(Please disregard previous post. It weren't right.)

Think said...

@Michael

Yes, I am a former fattie. But you are missing the point that almost no person has the discipline to starve themselves for long periods of times. And that is exactly what it feels like when you are following the doctor recommend low-calorie/low-fat diet.

Trying to find a new doctor recently, one young doctor that thought he was the bomb lectured me no less than 45 minutes on why low-carb is terrible. He cited outdated and disproven research (the China study for example) and really pushed hard for me to switch to a low-calorie/low-fat (and vegetarian) diet. That is the problem. So much misinformation. Much of it coming from the so called “experts” and sponsored by the government. No wonder so many people are obese.

By the way, that appointment was probably longer time spent with an actual doctor than all of my pervious medical appointments combined. It is interesting that you can’t get them for five minutes when you have a real problem. But get them going on the religion of low-calorie/low-fat and you can’t get them out of the room.

Michael said...

AllieOpp:"Michael, the discipline is much easier to engage in when one isn't starving oneself, the feeling of satiety and less hunger is possible with the correct diet"

Allie, it is axiomatic that discipline is not required for easy things or things that satisfy. One can go for a long time, many weeks, without starving to death. You and Think are conflating starving with craving, starving with being hungry.

Losing massive amounts of weight is very very hard and I am not trying to suggest that it is not. It is, in fact, heroic for some of the reasons you submit, principally that one has gotten used to eating lots of great tasting food whenever they feel, feel, like it. I have a daughter who lost 80 pounds and who struggles to successfully keep it off. It is heroic and it takes a hell of a lot of discipline and courage to do the job. But she started to be successful after she took ownership of her eating.

Michael said...

As for exercise making one hungrier I have the opposite experience. I can eat a lot more if I want to reward myself for exercise. But if I exercise I generally am not as hungry as I otherwise would be. I stay five to eight pounds above my ideal weight so don't think I credit myself with much of the discipline I recommend.

Think said...

@Michael said “You and Think are conflating starving with craving, starving with being hungry.”

You are right to a point. I am not trying to say that a person that is trying to lose weight is suffering as much as someone that is deprived food. But the feeling of hunger is extreme and terrible for an obese person that is eating enough of a calorie deficit to lose weight for a long period of time. It truly feels like you are starving.

For me, it wasn’t the loss of good tasting junk food that was difficult. If I was full, I could live without those things. It was the constant feeling of hunger. I think that must be true for most people. That is why appetite suppressing drugs work short term. People can give up the junk when they aren’t hungry. But those drugs quickly lose their appetite suppressing affect and people gain the weight back.

When eating high carb foods, people with insulin sensitivity are converting most of what they eat to fat storage as opposed to energy. It makes them feel sluggish and even hungrier. So they eat more carbs, spiking their insulin again, and restarting the cycle.

The simple fact is that people don’t have to feel starving to lose weight when they significantly reduce their carbs. That takes a heck of a lot of discipline too. Nobody likes the idea of giving up pasta and bread (or ice cream in my case). But that is where you discipline cycle is helpful. Once you start to see results, without starving, most people find that they have the discipline to live without the refined carbs.

AllieOop said...

Michael,
Yes of course we are talking about the feeling of intense hunger, not actual starvation. Taking ownership of one's obesity is enabled by becoming educated as to the physiology of obesity and not buying into the blame placing and misinformation of others who have never been overweight. When one understands the causes of their intense hunger, one can eat in a way as to decrease it and be succesful, which in turn makes being active possible. Win-win.

I'm sure your daughter who lost 80 pounds wouldn't like hearing her father calling her a former fatty and telling her she is was merely lazy.

Michael, your metabolism most likely is still normal. Increase in appetite is a very common occurrence after exercise.

James A. Donald said...

In at least some cases, probably around a third to two thirds, possibly the great majority of cases, male homosexuality is caused by early sexual experiences - older homosexuals recruiting children.

Analogously, paraphilias are well known and uncontroversially known to be caused by unusual early sexual experiences. The evidence for homosexuality is pretty similar to the evidence for other paraphilias, but with other paraphilias, you do not get in trouble for mentioning the evidence.

However, although homosexuality is in large part learned, does not mean it can be unlearned. It seems that when sexuality is first developing it is fluid, but in males rapidly becomes fixed and is utterly unchangeable thereafter.

In females, however, remains fluid throughout life. If society thought that women should have sex with donkeys, and women were regularly exposed to role models having sex with donkeys, pretty soon they would all be keen on donkeys.

Female homosexuality is not only quite clearly learned, it can quite clearly be unlearned. Male homosexuality not so much.

If a sheep is raised by a goat, it will in adulthood attempt to have sex with goats, and re-introducing it to sheep in adulthood is seldom effective.

Balfegor said...

Re: Think:

The simple fact is that people don’t have to feel starving to lose weight when they significantly reduce their carbs. That takes a heck of a lot of discipline too. Nobody likes the idea of giving up pasta and bread (or ice cream in my case). But that is where you discipline cycle is helpful. Once you start to see results, without starving, most people find that they have the discipline to live without the refined carbs.

A lot of the problem for me is that carbohydrates are much lower effort to prepare. For example, rice -- I put it in the rice cooker. I come back 20 minutes later (or half an hour later, or two hours later -- whenever really) and if I season with a bit of stewed meat or sauce, and maybe an egg, I have a meal. I don't eat bread at home, but bread would be even easier (put it in the toaster, take it out a few minutes later. Then spread some butter or jam on it).

Meanwhile, if I want to roast vegetables, I have to preheat the oven, slice the vegetables, season them, put them in the oven, wait around however long, check periodically to see if they're done/burning, and then pull them out. It's a simple meal, but it still takes at least half an hour of my attention to prepare.

Balfegor said...

I will also say that it was much easier to lose weight after I stopped paying attention to people exhorting me to exercise. As in, I actually lost weight, quite quickly, once I stopped exercising, something that had never happened when I was exercising regularly. I walk quite a bit (I don't have a car), so it may be different for others, but cutting exercise completely did it for me.

Michael said...

Allie. My daughter proudly calls herself a former fattie. She lost her weight without any hectoring from me but with lots of encouragement for the lifestyle changes she adopted. And she was never lazy, just undisciplined in her eating. Like most over eaters she ate to comfort herself.

Michael said...

I agree that it is impossible to lose weight by exercise alone. An hour's run, for me, is about 700 calories. I can eat that in forty five seconds.

Bob Ellison said...

Carbs, not calories.

Brian O'Connell said...

"In at least some cases, probably around a third to two thirds, possibly the great majority of cases, male homosexuality is caused by early sexual experiences - older homosexuals recruiting children."

OK, so anywhere between 5 and 95% of cases, or possibly between 2 and 98% of cases.

Saint Croix said...

What if gay people and fat people switched places?

We would say that being gay is unhealthy, and people should try to lose the gay.

Gays would go to gay farms.

Fat people would say they were born fat and they can’t help it.

Fat people would interrupt the Olympics with a protest. “We’re here, we’re fat. We’re here, we’re fat.” When told their protest is deeply offensive, and also doesn’t rhyme, fat people start chanting, “We’re fat. How’s that? We’re fat. How’s that?”

Everybody tells Ellen she’s fat, but she doesn’t admit it. And then she’s like, “I’m fat!” She gets a talk show.

Al Pacino makes a movie, Hippo Day in the Afternoon, about two fat people who rob a bank so one of them can have stomach-stapling surgery.

Al Pacino makes another movie, Waddling, about a vice cop who goes undercover among the fat people.

Madonna gets voted “best kiss” at the MTV awards when she kisses a morbidly obese person.

In the middle ages, fat people were burned at the stake. “Marshmallow” is considered a vile insult.

Richard Simmons used to be gay, but now he’s totally straight. And you can do it too!

There are lots and lots of books on how to be straight. There’s South Beach Straight and Atkins straight. People have big fights on the best way to be straight.

The FDA comes out with a straight pyramid. Atkins gets mad. “You got way too much sodomy in your pyramid.”

Obama is opposed to fat marriage. And then he comes out in favor of it. He gets on the cover of Newsweek. “Our First Fat President.” And historians are like, what about Taft?

Saint Croix said...
This comment has been removed by the author.
Claudette Lynge said...

My internist 15 years ago congratulated me on being famine-resistant.

My grandfather's nickname during the Depression was "Fats."

My mother, my brother, me and all four of my children are famine-resistant. My husband eats like a horse and is normal weight, but apparently those genes are recessive and the famine-resistant genes are dominant.

My oldest son lost 70 pounds when he was 15, 8 years ago. He has kept the weight off (now 23) and looks gorgeous - but it's a constant struggle. He does it by watching what he eats and walking 30 miles a week (no joke).

My youngest son was adopted by good friends of ours who couldn't have children. His adopted mother is straight up health food all the way, whole grains, no sugar, exercise all the time, out in the sun. His brother, also adopted, very lean and muscular. Despite the concentrated healthy environment, he is as overweight as my other children.

Obviously it's possible to fight it, my older son is proof of that. I do my best, lose a lot, gain half back, lose a lot, gain half back, so that after enough half-lives of weight loss I might be a size 12 by the time I'm about 120. In the meantime, I am who I am and I concentrate on being a wonderful, generous, kind person and doing my best to fulfill the things I am responsible for and to not cringe too much when I look in a mirror.