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Why Are Americans So Overweight??

I always wonder how it could be that a nation as educated as ours, with the medical knowledge and resources that we have could also have the largest number of people who are overweight and obese.


In 2012, about 34.9% of the adults in this country were obese. This is much higher than the 16% that were obese in 1970.

I think of this often as I drive through town and see a gym at almost every corner, 26.2 stickers on cars everywhere, and a vitamin shop at every other. Most Americans have a gym membership (or two), and even have gym equipment in their homes that serve as coat hangers and dust collectors.


If this isn't confusing enough, with the popularity of youth sports how is it that childhood obesity is also on the rise???



An estimated 43 million preschool children (under age 5) were overweight or obese in 2010, a 60% increase since 1990 in America.





 

WHY?

I did some research... and it all makes perfect sense. This is going to be my very first topic for my talk radio show this week on 101.5 Huntley Community Radio (Podcast will be shared), in hopes to build awareness and prevent those extra notches from being added to your belt loops.

  1. Portion Sizes: We live in a culture where we are taught to finish everything off our plates. Studies have been done that have revealed that children who are raised to do so continue to polish their plates clean causing weight management issues as adults. An overwhelming 86% of adolescents who were brought up with that "rule" were at least 20 pounds overweight as young adults. We then grow up and go to restaurants that give us the best value by filling our monster-sized plates with high calorie foods and we finish every bite.



The size of our dinner plates has increased by 50% over the years. As you can see here, the average plate size in 1970 was 10 inches in comparison to the 15 inch plate of today. In Europe they still use 9-10 inch plates. This has a direct correlation to obesity statistics.


2. Misled by Marketing : That's right my friends... you are being "crock-blocked".

The grocery stores and restaurants are filled with examples of this. Read my blog about HEALTHY PROTEIN BARS to get an idea of a true crock-block. My advice is to read labels and log everything to avoid this confusion. The more you educate yourself, the less you can be misled. Just because a product has a healthy buzz word, does not mean it is low in calories and fat.

Don't be fooled! It could be heart healthy and made with organic wheat, but it may contain a ton of sugar and calories!! Fat free does not mean sugar free and sugar free does not mean cholesterol free!


Crock Block- This is when you are fed a crock of $hit by food advertisers who mislead you and make you think something is healthy and it’s not.


3. We use the excuse of our busy lives as a crutch: Yes, we are busy. However , I still think our grandparents had it harder and the obesity rates were much lower.


Everyday I hear clients complain that they have no time to make dinner. I'm guilty of saying it myself. Then I think about my grandmother. I was fortunate to see her live to an amazing age of 97 and raise five children. She never said she didn't have time for dinner prep, yet she actually had to make dinner. We have everything partially prepared for us. Frozen and canned goods, packaged meats and seasonings. Breads and tortillas already baked. My poor grandmother had to take the bus to the grocery store after work, buy the groceries needed to make dinner for seven from scratch...and I am talking homemade bread and hand-cut vegetables every single night. We complain about opening up a package and jar, dumping into an instant pot and pushing a button. REALLY PEOPLE!!??? As busy as we are, technology has made our lives that much easier. You can order groceries from your phone, look up recipes by asking Alexa, and throw a few pre-packaged items in a pressure cooker and have it cooked fully in 30 minutes. Instead we order pizza, pay five times the amount that we should and wait over an hour for it to be delivered... just so we can overeat the LARGE portion of "whole wheat organic vegan pizza" and wonder why the scale won't cooperate.


No need to say more....


 

There are so many other reasons why Americans have gotten to this dangerous point with our health and wellness, but I feel that if you are more aware of the three reasons I have highlighted above it will make a difference in your choices and overall health! You deserve it and your children will watch and follow your behaviors. Be a role model and make a difference in everyone's life!

My beautiful family. Husband Matt, Me, Sam (20), Aly (19), Nic (17) and Ava (9).

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