Okay, let's face it. We are a fat nation. Well, at least two-thirds of us are.
Seat sizes have increased in cars, stadiums - even toilets. Many of us require TWO seats on an airplane (or we may be escorted off). Some companies, such as Goliath Caskets, even sell supersized triple-wide caskets for dead obese people. Says one plus size casket store owner, "After 380 pounds you have to go to an oversize." And one out of every 20 caskets she sells is a plus size. Thanks largely to Kevin Smith, the topic of obesity has once again found itself on the front page of news headlines around the globe.
I was a panelist in ABC's FACEOFF this week. The topic: Is it okay to be fat? Many would say, "No, it's not okay." I, however, disagree.
First of all, let me say that that statement, "Is it okay to be fat." Is way to broad for me. OKAY is a term of permission. God has given us free will to make our own decisions. And in this country, we have the freedom to choose our eating behavior - even when sometimes that choice is harmful to us. It all comes down to personal choice. And the choice doesn't seem to be an easy one.
DIETING IS HARD. Food is good. Delicious! Manufacturers have come up with yummy desserts and convenient, pre-packaged snacks. Restaurants offer pizzas and juicy burgers and deep fried shrimp by the mounds that our mouths water for. Grandmothers and mothers and barbecuing dads hold secrets to some of the tastiest recipes that fill our tummies and comfort our souls. Food is good. It's plentiful. Food is the center of every get-together, whether we want to celebrate, mourn, reward or comfort. Not to mention that we HAVE to eat just to survive.
The problem is, we have to have SOME, but not too much; portion size not super size. To lose weight we need to eat less, move more, weigh, measure, plan, track, pre-cook, look up, portion out, refuse, reduce and realize that we have to do this all over again ... tomorrow. But one bad weekend can put back on a week's worth of hard-earned weight loss! It comes back ON a lot quicker than it goes OFF! How are we EVER going to GET all our excess weight off?! And when we do, then what? Do this forEVER?! DIETING IS SO HARD!
So, what's the alternative? Remain overweight? Think about it: no more obsessing about WHAT to eat, HOW MUCH to eat, WHERE to eat or WHAT'S IN what we eat. Aaaaaah that's what I'm talking about! So much easier! Or, is it?
BEING FAT IS HARD. How many sizes of clothes are in your closet-your attic? What hurts-your back, knees, feet or hips? What about the emotional pain? We look for someone to hide behind in pictures, dragging unwilling children onto our laps. Wait a minute ... WHAT laps? My stomach came to the end of my knees when I sat down. I couldn't buckle up in a car or tie my own shoes. There were times where I couldn't get in my car because another had parked too close. I wanted to ride horses with my daughter and go bike riding with my sons. My children loved me, but heard whispers from classmates about my size. My husband told me I was beautiful, but I didn't feel it inside. I hated being a huffing and puffing, exhausted wife who wasted money we didn't have on food binges and diet schemes. The guilt!
The truth is, if you have any kind of food "issue" or addiction, that area of your life will be difficult.
The other truth is ... you CAN get to goal and stay there forEVER. Difficult and impossible are two completely different things.
So, is it okay to be fat? Here's my opinion: Yes. Can you be healthy and fat? No. But you DO have a choice.
Dieting is hard. Being fat is hard. CHOOSE YOUR HARD.
What's YOUR opinion?
Follow Kim Bensen on Twitter: www.twitter.com/kimbensen