Sunday, September 21, 2008


Article in Question

The article says 26% of women are on a diet, which is the lowest rate in two decades.

Once you know where to start looking for it, you see this subtle thing that happens in the media. The article could have easily taken a "people are eating healthier and not focusing on their weight" tone.
"That view is echoed by Kelly D. Brownell, director of the Rudd Center for Food Policy and Obesity at Yale University, who says that diets are "notoriously ineffective," and posits that many overweight people may have simply given up.

Marge McMillan, 60, is one who says she's given up on diets, if not on slimming down. A veterinarian who lives in Medford, McMillan tried the low-carb Atkins diet and Weight Watchers but threw in the towel on both. Now, she's just trying to eat healthily. "Diets don't work," she said. "You lose the weight but regain more."

So, in these two paragraphs, we have the idea that overweight people have to give up. Give up on what? On a failing idea? On the idea that we should pursue something that only 3% of people succeed on? The woman in the second paragraph certainly doesnt seem that she has "given up" on anything. It actually seems that she has a much more healthy attitude on eating and weight. But, the "medical establishment" thinks she has given up.

"Still, the emphasis on healthy eating may also be motivating many people to stop dieting, some say. "The way health is being approached today is to eat healthier foods, not to eat less," says Balzer. Indeed, foods once shunned as fattening - nuts, olive oil, avocados - have been reborn as elixirs, valued for their anti-inflammatory or nutrient-rich qualities. Even chocolate, once a dietary pariah, now enjoys a reputation as a flavonoid-rich disease-buster."

This paragraph is ambiguous. First, it still holds the idea that "dieting" should be a normal way of eating for people. It also has the idea that there are "fattening" foods, even if they are "healthy."

Lastly, the 2nd page talks about how there hasnt been a new "diet fad" to energize tired dieters back into their dieting ways. Even after parroting the "calories in calories out" and "eat healthier" ideas, they still think there is this "magic pill" that will make fat people skinny. Except for major surgery (hey, I had my stomach cut out for the chance to be smaller), there is no way to make fat people thin.

(The most ambitious study that I had showed that average weight loss after 3 years was 6.6 pounds. Yeah, for someone "obese" thats not going to change anything.)

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