All Articles Tagged "obesity"

Why Do Black Men Think They’re Immune From The African American Obesity Epidemic?

February 18th, 2015 - By Brande Victorian
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Source: Shutterstock

Source: Shutterstock

Last night “Being Mary Jane” broached the subject of obesity among Black women in a somewhat forced scene between Mary Jane and Niecy. MJ found out Niecy was hoarding Twinkies and soda cans under her bed which, forget about the weight problem, is just triflin’, and decided to have a heart-to-heart with her overweight niece. Initially, I didn’t feel any type of way about the scene, other than it came across as something Mara Brock Akil just felt like she had to touch on, rather than a serious issue she put much thought into addressing — kind of like Mary Jane’s doctor friend’s attempted suicide last season — but then Niecy, in one of her many moments of denial, proclaimed she was “thick” which prompted Mary Jane to ask: why does every overweight Black woman in the hood think she’s “thick”? And I was at home under the covers like, I didn’t stay up for this.

As someone who’s been overweight pretty much her whole life, I can assure you I haven’t stayed this way because somewhere along the line some dude looking for a booty call referred to me as “thick” and I’ve been terrified of losing my fluffy appeal ever since. There are far greater complexities to gaining weight and losing it than a distorted perception that you’re Amber Rose-type thick when you’re really leaning more towards Gabourey Sidibe, so if you’re going to bother to even approach the subject in a meaningful way, do it right. I can’t imagine any plus-size woman watching “Being Mary Jane” last night suddenly had a change of heart about her lifestyle, which all in all makes the convo between Niecy and MJ a missed opportunity. At this point, though, that’s neither here nor there. What does remain, however, is a persistent attitude among African American men that they are somehow on the outside looking in when it comes to the African American obesity problem.

As I scrolled our Twitter timeline last night, I noticed a tweet from’s Jamilah Lemieux in which she “kindly” reminded Black men they aren’t too far behind us women in this fat plague and I thought, Oh Lord what kind of mentions are heating up her feed? But it wasn’t long before we received messages of our own, in fact there were two rather interesting ones from a Black man which read:

obesity and lack of fitness is an epidemic among black women in the U.S. I think most are in denial about it.

the junk food industrial complex is built on the diseased bodies of black women.

If I can be completely honest and judgmental here, I’ll let you know that the first thing I noticed about this man was the belly that was evident in his profile picture. While he certainly isn’t obese, I’m fairly certain a doctor would classify him as overweight which is why I was even more taken aback at his ability to remove himself (i.e. his own denial) from the complexes he was referring to and to which he clearly has fallen victim.

African Americans are 1.5 times more likely to be obese than Caucasians. However, when we’re talking a ratio of 69% versus 82% when it comes to African American men who are overweight/obese compared to African American women, I’d say Black men have no room to talk. Better yet, feel free to talk, but say something substantial, like how you’re going to motivate the whole community to get active and strive for better health instead of singling out a subset of the population.

Generally speaking, the people I see doing the most bashing about Black women and our weight problem are Black men. Granted some of these characters are internet trolls who should be ignored more often than not anyway, but the Black male disassociation with obesity is not only disheartening; it’s ignorant. While it would be great to see Black men rally behind the extra 12% of Black women struggling to lose pounds the way we support them when it comes issues like police brutality (and yes, you might say the latter is far more serious but both issues can lead to death), the bigger issue is Black men at least need to be talking amongst themselves rather than pointing fingers at sloppy, lazy, overweight Black women as if obesity is an us versus them issue.

The thing is, everyone is struggling with this weight thing in 2015 — and we have been for a while now — and there’s nothing motivational about reinforcing negative stereotypes about obesity, especially when those comments are coming from a hypocritical place. Both Black men and Black women need to do something about our eating patterns, our fitness habits, and the examples we’re setting for Black children, that’s just the truth. Numbers don’t lie fellas.

Why Aren’t Black Women The Face Of, Or At Least Part Of, The New Plus-Size Acceptance In Modeling?

February 5th, 2015 - By Charing Ball
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plus-size acceptance

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I try to not indulge in too many conspiracy theories, but if I had to my channel my inner Mulder and Scully, I would swear that the modeling industry was trying to whitewash the image of plus-size beauty.

Take for instance, Sports Illustrated magazine, which is about to editorialize one of its first plus-size models within the pages of its annual swimsuit edition (through an ad for Swimsuits For All). According to

Plus-sized model, Ashley Graham, is making history by posing in Sports Illustrated’s annual swimsuit issue.

Graham stars in the first ever ad to feature a plus-size model in the pages of the highly anticipated issue. This means that along with the usual models —Benhati Prinsloo, Chrissy Teigen, Heidi Klum, Adirana Lima, to name a few — a curvier woman totally rocking a string bikini will be in the same pages.

You can watch a trailer for the magazine issue on ET’s website, which gives better insight into what SI means by “plus-size.” And as you might have suspected, it’s not really that plus. Instead, a more appropriate term would be “curvy,” considering that Graham is proportionately shaped, like a Coke bottle, with little belly fat. I’ve written before about how unrealistic, deceptive and problematic that image of “plus-size” can be, just like the current standard of beauty (considering only eight percent of women actually embody the Coke-bottle figure).

With that being said, this is pretty groundbreaking stuff for Sports Illustrated and the modeling industry in general. Not only is it an acknowledgement that the beauty standard can come in various sizes, but this editorial also acknowledges the slight change to those beauty standards. We’re going from a more athletic and thin, yet equally proportioned woman, to a woman with a more curvaceous and meaty, yet proportioned, frame. What’s interesting to note here is that Sport Illustrated is not the only part of the industry looking to expand a bit on its beauty standards.

According to Business Insider:

Plus-size model Tess Holliday has made history as the first woman of her size and height to sign a contract with a major modeling agency.

Holliday, whose real name is Tess Munster, just signed a deal with MiLK Model Management. She is 5 feet 5 inches tall, and a size 22.

Most plus-size models are typically taller and between sizes 8 and 16, by comparison.”

Again, pretty groundbreaking stuff here. Not only is she is a plus-size model with all the belly rolls and jiggly-parts that come with that, but her “plus” actually changes the industry standard and is more aligned with how a good portion of American women are shaped, and even sized. Still, there is something within this shift in beauty standards that makes it even less revolutionary. And I’m talking about the exclusion of Black women.

Yeah, I know: Why does everything have to be a race issue?

The media (mainstream, independent, Black, health and otherwise) has been fixated on Black women’s supposed weight issues, and our weight has inspired years of public debate. A simple query on Google for “Black Women and Obesity” will net you a massive amount of articles and commentary on the topic alone. My favorite is this New York Times article, which gets right down to the point and asks, “Why Are Black Women Fat?”

As part of these public conversations, we have learned that 57.9 percent of Black women, ages 20 and over, are classified as obese, which is significantly higher than our white women counterparts. And even more devastating, this obesity level makes us susceptible to a number of life-ending diseases like diabetes, heart disease and cancer.

Good information, however, the tone of these public conversations slowly but surely grew more hostile. And if Black women were not being shamed for being fat in these public discussions, people would concern troll us with “helpful advice” on how not to be fat anymore. Like when Boris Kodjoe told Black women in particular to stop making #FatExcuses, and then his skinny wife turned around and tried to sell us headscarves for the gym…

Just about everybody, including other Black women, used those statistics and statements to prey upon the insecurity of heavy-set Black women. We were made to feel like bad mothers and role models for producing a generation of children with eating disorders. And we were told that without proper diet and exercise, many of us would never be considered attractive or find men to marry us.

The gaze, at times, was particularly harsh. But as this New York Magazine article notes:

As the authors of a new study in the Journal of Nutrition Education and Behavior explain, “[o]verweight and obese African American women are almost twice as likely as overweight and obese white women to respond that they are ‘about the right weight’ or ‘underweight.’

That’s right: Even as society routinely channels its inner Mister to remind Black women of this: “Look at you: You’re black, you’re poor, you’re ugly, you’re a woman. You’re nothing at all.” We were all like, I’m poor, black, I may even be ugly, but Dear God, I’m here!”

 And since I’m here, I’m going to squeeze my big behind into this leopard print onesie and feel good about myself…

When it comes to carrying our weight, Black women have confidence like no other. And every one pretty much knows it. However, I have yet to see that enduring Sista Big Bone-spirit reflected anywhere in the industry’s recent embrace of plus-size beauty. Instead, we see white women leading the curvy-girl revolution and basically becoming the poster children for positive body image.

It may seem like a trivial issue, but I feel like it is worth noting that once again, white folks get the glory of embodying attributes associated exclusively with blackness, but never have to deal with the burden. It should be noted that this small yet noticeable shift in beauty standards likely has a direct connection to the rise and spread of hip-hop culture, which embraces a more Rubenesque shape found mostly in Black women. It should also be noted that Kim Kardashian might not have been able to #BreakTheInternet had it not been for hip-hop promoting those Black bodies for public consumption.

So if Black women can be the negative face of obesity, why can’t we also get the glory within this new acceptance?

The Digits: Is Your Weight Your Boyfriend’s Business?

September 22nd, 2014 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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"couple-talking PF"


I would be lying if I said that I’m 100 percent comfortable with my weight these days. While my size isn’t something that keeps me from putting on a bikini or has me ashamed, I know that I’m far from the weight that I was when I left college. The food that was available to me once I got out of school and was working late hours to make my dreams come true (I was picking up fast food to eat late at night) has helped me gain weight that I’m still trying to find a consistent gym schedule to get rid of. The pounds are in my thighs, around my stomach and in my arms (though it’s not that noticeable because I’m tall). I’ve been able to lose a good amount of weight only to turn around and put it back on with the stresses of life. Like many other women working on their weight, it’s a battle for me.

My boyfriend hasn’t necessarily made a big deal out of this. If anything, he just wants me to be healthy and will furrow his brows at me for bringing McDonald’s and Chinese food into his home–though he rarely has food in his fridge. But after surprising me by buying me a J. Crew dress that I couldn’t fit, we had to have a very uncomfortable conversation.

In the past, for surprise gift-giving moments, my boyfriend had asked me what size I was. That question was tough enough to answer because my tops, even my boobs, can fit in a medium or a large when it comes to shirts. But my bottom? I have to try on things to make sure they fit. I told him that I was a large, told him to never buy me pants or a skirt and hoped that that would be enough. However, when the J. Crew dress didn’t fit, imagine my sheer horror when he asked me how much I weighed.

I turned up my face and responded with, “WHY? Why do you care?” In turn, he responded with this:

“I was just wondering. I just thought that’s something we should be able to know about each other as people in a relationship.”

But why?

Don’t get me wrong, he didn’t push me about the issue once I said that such information wasn’t his business, but it got me thinking. A part of me knows that my own insecurities with my weight are the main reason why I wouldn’t be comfortable with sharing my actual digits with him, and that’s part of the reason why I need to get back in the gym and get my life together. But then another part of me wonders, why would that information matter to a significant other? If I was going through a What’s Eating Gilbert Grape? type of thing where my weight was affecting what I could do and those around me and was starting to make me look completely different, then yes, that information would be useful to share. But I also feel that if I tell him such information, it will become a mental block that will make him too worried about my size, what I’m doing about it and what goes into my mouth.

Just this morning I was watching “Divorce Court” and it was one of those “Before the Vows” episodes. The couple looking for Judge Lynn Toler’s advice on whether or not they were ready for marriage were plagued by two things: the fact that they didn’t have a lot of time to spend together because of his schedule, and the fact that he was always in her ear about her weight. The young man said that while he loves “thick women,” his fiancée was getting a little “too thick.” Such comments were putting a rift in their relationship. And while this man only seemed to have eyes for his lady, Judge Toler couldn’t ignore the fact that he put a damper on his statements of admiration for her with yet another comment about her size: “I love her…no matter how big she gets, I love her and I want to be with her.”

And remember when Boris Kodjoe had so much to say about excessive weight gain and it being a good excuse for your partner to step out on you? Talk about pressure…

So I wonder, can weight be a distraction in a relationship? Is your relationship negatively impacted once your man knows anything about your actual weight and size? I’m sure it all depends on the man, the state of the relationship and how you looked when the relationship started (I’ve been around the same weight since we met, but I’m larger than he thinks…). But if you ask me, some information isn’t necessary for your man to know.

For now, I’m going to continue trying to eat better and take advantage of my two gym memberships to get back to a size that I’M happy with, and he’s welcome to come along with me for that ride. But the numbers aren’t as important to share in my opinion, because I’m not trying to be defined by or only looked at as those three numbers. Either way, my weight is something I have to deal with and get down–not him.


New Study Says You Can’t Be Overweight Or Obese And Be Healthy At The Same Time

December 3rd, 2013 - By Victoria Uwumarogie
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Source: Shutterstock

Source: Shutterstock

According to a new Canadian study, published today, the idea that you can be obese or overweight and healthy isn’t necessarily true, because most people aren’t thinking about their health down the line.

The study, conducted by Dr. Ravi Retnakaran of the University of Toronto used more than 61, 000 people and followed the differences found between obese or overweight people and slimmer folks when it comes to their health and the risks they might face for heart attacks, strokes and death. Following up with those individuals after a decade, “those who were overweight or obese but didn’t have high blood pressure, heart disease or diabetes still had a 24 percent increased risk for heart attack, stroke and death over 10 years or more, compared with normal-weight people.”

Dr. Renakaran had this to say about his findings:

“These data suggest that increased body weight is not a benign condition, even in the absence of metabolic abnormalities, and argue against the concept of healthy obesity or benign obesity.

We found that metabolically healthy obese individuals are indeed at increased risk for death and cardiovascular events over the long term as compared with metabolically healthy normal-weight individuals.”

Of course, many people often say that just because they aren’t small in size doesn’t automatically make them unhealthy. There is some truth to that. According to David Katz, director of the Yale University Prevention Research Center, not all weight gain is harmful. And skinny people with metabolic health problems like high blood pressure or high cholesterol can be at even higher risk for the heart attacks, strokes and more than bigger folks. But still, both men claim it’s possible that “metabolically healthy” individuals actually just have risk factors at a lower level that can and will get worse as time passes if not controlled.

“It depends partly on genes, partly on the source of calories, partly on activity levels, partly on hormone levels. Weight gain in the lower extremities among younger women tends to be metabolically harmless; weight gain as fat in the liver can be harmful at very low levels.”

Katz went on to say that once you gain weight in your liver, that’s when you can really end up at high risk for heart attacks, strokes and death.

“In particular, fat in the liver interferes with its function and insulin sensitivity. This starts a domino effect. Insensitivity to insulin causes the pancreas to compensate by raising insulin output. Higher insulin levels affect other hormones in a cascade that causes inflammation. Fight-or-flight hormones are affected, raising blood pressure. Liver dysfunction also impairs blood cholesterol levels.”

All in all, the men say that they are all for people focusing on eating healthier and exercising rather than pushing to meet a certain weight. As Katz says, “Lifestyle practices conducive to weight control over the long term are generally conducive to better overall health as well. I favor a focus on finding health over a focus on losing weight.”

I personally don’t sit around stressing myself out over my BMI, but I know that I need to take better care of myself when it comes to what I eat in order to look out for myself (I write this as I eat Nutter Butters, but I’m heading to the gym tonight!). I might think I’m healthy now, but that doesn’t mean my own weight struggles won’t negatively impact me in the long term, but it’s all a process, right?




The More Educated Black Women Are, The Less Likely To Be Obese

September 26th, 2013 - By Ann Brown
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According to new research published in the American Journal of Health Promotion, education is the main factor in the fight against obesity. Just because you have money doesn’t mean you will take steps to keep your weight in check. However, if you are educated you will be more likely to eat healthier and exercise. “Researchers have been studying the relationship between body mass index and socioeconomic status for years, agreeing, for the most part, that women in areas with fewer economic resources have higher BMIs than women in more affluent communities,” reports The Huffington Post.

Researchers from Deakin University in Victoria, Australia gathered data from more than 4,000 women, ages 18 to 45, living in low-income neighborhoods and examined the role of education and income on BMI.

They looked specifically at subjects who are at what they call an “amplified disadvantage,” meaning they have a disadvantage in both education and income. “It has often been suggested that obesity happens because low-income people cannot afford high-quality food. Yet this study’s results suggest an alternative narrative: that it is education, and not income, that constrains people’s ability to eat healthfully,” said Frederick J. Zimmerman, Ph.D., the Fred W. and Pamela K. Wasserman Professor and Chair of the Department of Health Policy & Management in the UCLA Fielding School of Public Health.

On the other hand, a person’s education level was associated with greater access to health information and the capacity to understand and use health information, the study found.

Zimmerman also added that “because only low-income women were studied, it isn’t clear to what extent the results would apply to higher-income women, to men or to non-Australians.”

A 2010 report from the Centers for Disease Control and Prevention looked not only at income and education but also at race. The CDC data shows there is no significant correlation between obesity and education among men. Women were a different story. The CDC report was more in line with the new research finding that women with college degrees are less likely to be obese compared with less educated women.

“Overall, 29.0% of women who live in households with income at or above 350% of the poverty level are obese and 42.0% of those with income below 130% of the poverty level are obese,” found the CDC. Among women 23.4 percent of those with a college degree are obese and 42.1 percent of women with less than a high school education are obese. Non-Hispanic white and Mexican-American women with college degrees are significantly less likely to be obese compared with those with less than a high school education.

“In fact, among non-Hispanic white, non-Hispanic black, and Mexican-American women, the prevalence of obesity among those with a college degree is significantly lower than among women with some college,” found the CDC.

Medical Bills Continue To Place A High Burden On African Americans

June 13th, 2013 - By Kimberly Gedeon
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Obesity affects 38.1 percent of men and 54.2 percent of women in the African-American population, which leads to towering medical bills related to blood pressure and diabetes. Black Americans are beginning to worry about affording health care as medical bills are continuing to flood their mailboxes, reports

One-fourth of the respondents said that paying for vital prescriptions to stabilize their health was a struggle, according to a survey by NPR, the Robert Wood Johnson Foundation, and the Harvard School of Public Health. While the rest of the country is battling cancer, the survey discovered that African Americans’ main health concerns lie in high blood pressure, stroke, and diabetes.

These chronic illnesses are a result of the inaccessibility of healthy food, which tends to be more expensive. Fast food companies have come under fire for the frequency with which they market their cheap products to minorities and low-income customers.

Because African-Americans are disproportionately affected by the unavailable health care, compared to whites, their treatable illnesses become elevated, or worse, fatal.

Ashley Liggins, 30, replied to NPR’s Facebook and noted that being without health insurance forced her to choose between buying medication for high blood pressure, gas for her car, or groceries for the week.

However, most of the people in the survey did have health care plans, but still find the cost of prescriptions and doctor visits to be daunting. The average family of four—with employer-paid health insurance—annually spends more on medical bills than their groceries.

“We found general economic insecurity among families who generally were doing well—and this fear of paying a larger medical bill was just one of the top problems [African Americans] had,” explained Robert Blendon, professor of health policy at the Harvard School of Public Health.

New Study Links Teen Pregnancy To Obesity

April 23rd, 2013 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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Source: WENN

Source: WENN

Although there is a common belief that the earlier you give birth, the easier it is for your body to “bounce back,” a recent study suggests that this may not be true, The Huffington Post reports.

The study actually suggests that teen pregnancy may raise risks of obesity.

“We know that teen pregnancy is tied to certain immediate risks, such as babies having low birth weight and mothers struggling to complete high school — and now we know that it is also associated with poor long-term health outcomes,” said Dr. Tammy Chang, a researcher who worked on the study.

“When taking care of teen moms, we often have so many immediate concerns — child care, housing, school, social and financial support — that we don’t often think of the long term health effects of teen pregnancy,” Chang continued.

The study was conducted on 5,520 women between the ages of 20 and 59. It compares those who gave birth in their teens to those who had not. Researchers analyzed the data and placed each woman into a group of either being a normal weight (with a body mass index between 18.5 and 24.9), overweight (with a BMI between 25 and 29.9) or obese (with a BMI higher over 30).

The survey revealed that 44.2% of the women who gave birth in their teens were obese, while 35.2% of the women who gave birth after 19 were obese.

The study did not find a huge difference between the groups of women who fell into the overweight category, but it did find that fewer women who gave birth in their teens fell into the normal weight category. Only 26.1% of participants who had children in their teenage years were found to be in the normal weight group.

Researchers went on to note that there is an association between teen pregnancy and obesity, but that does’t necessarily mean that teen pregnancy causes obesity.


You’re ‘Big As Hell’ Because You ‘Earned’ It: Tyrese Rants About Overweight People During Interview

April 11th, 2013 - By Jazmine Denise Rogers
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Source: WENN

Source: WENN

When you consider how long Tyrese Gibson has been in the entertainment industry, one would think that by now he’d know how to offer “politically correct” answers in place of responses that might be perceived as offensive. Or possibly he has learned and simply doesn’t care. During a recent interview with All Hip Hop, the 34-year-old singer-turned-actor-turned-author was asked asked if he felt responsible as an entertainer to “inspire people to live healthier lifestyles.” While the question seemed pretty general, the “Stay” singer offered a pretty harsh response.

“No two situations are the same. If you are fat and n*sty and you don’t like the way you look, do something about it. It’s simple,” he responded.

“When you take a shower and you put your fat, n*sty body in the shower and by the time you get out, the mirrors are all steamed up so you don’t look at what you did to yourself. That may sound offensive or insensitive but ultimately, you are big as hell because you have earned that sh**. You worked your a** off to eat everything in sight to get big as hell,” Gibson continued.

“If you got a problem with the way you look, then you need to do something about it. Excuses sound best to the people that’s making them up,” he finished.

While there may be some truth to Gibson’s statement, as the motivation for any lifestyle change generally begins within, his delivery was all wrong and comes off a bit insensitive. As you may have guessed, his comments didn’t sit too well with some fans  and his Twitter mentions have been filled with people criticizing him for his comments. In turn, the singer took to his Twitter page to offer an apology for his style of delivery and rebuke media outlets for “twisting” his words.

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What is your opinion on his comments? Is he simply offering tough love or was he totally out of line?

MN, M.D.:The Skinny On Obesity And Successful Weight Loss

March 18th, 2013 - By Mercy Edionwe MD
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Source: Shutterstock

From your mother to your girlfriends, and even yourself, we all have our views on how to lose weight. But, has anyone actually stopped to see if these general views are true? Well, a recent article in the New England Journal of Medicine (NEJM) exposed some of the common views and tested their truth. Researchers completed an internet search for popular weight loss tips and then searched research papers for evidence on how effective — or ineffective — the advice was. Here’s a breakdown of what they found.


  1. Engaging in sex can cause you to lose a good amount of calories. Wrong!  A study that looked into this found that an average man would only lose a total of 21 calories during a 6 minute sex session (FYI, it takes a deficit of 3,500 calories to lose one pound).  Although the amount of energy used during sex is a lot, the average amount of time people use to have sex is not.  As a result, the total amount of calories used is very small.  Maybe the next time you are in the mood, you can consider an hour-long continuous session?
  2. Those who win the weight loss “race” are those who stay slow and steady and not those who are fast. According to the NEJM article, there is NO truth in that. The research fact is this: those who stick to a “starvation diet” (AKA a very low calorie diet) will lose a lot more weight in the beginning compared to those who don’t.  However, when the study visited both groups in one year, they saw no difference in the total amount of weight loss.  Basically, it doesn’t matter if you do it rapidly or slowly.
  3.  Skipping breakfast or eating a snack can hurt your weight loss. I’m sure a lot of you have heard these myths.  Skipping breakfast or eating a snack will not stop your weight loss. The more important thing is what you are eating, not when you do eat.
  4. Setting realistic goals and motivation are key to success. Nope. Apparently these factors are not important when you are losing weight according to this article. I don’t know about this one because I personally think that if you start a diet/exercise program, there has to be some form of motivation tied to it. But I have also seen people lose weight even when their goals were or were not realistic.
  5. Those who were breastfed tend to be skinny. I think this seems more obvious.  Although breastfeeding has multiple benefits for a baby, being forever skinny is not one of them.


  1. Obesity can be in your genes, but it will only come to fruition in the right environment. Pretty much you are what you eat!  If you choose foods high in calories and fat, you are likely to be fat, especially if it is in your genes.  If you eat a well-balanced diet and stick to portion control, you can be skinny even if obesity is in your genes.
  2. Dieting is not the long term solution. Dieting can help you lose the weight.  However, if you go back to the same way of eating afterward, the weight will always come back.
  3. Exercise is the long term solution. One of the true keys to weight loss is tying exercise to your daily life for the rest of your life.
  4. There is more to exercise than losing weight. Exercise alone has been tied to a huge  improvement in high blood pressure and diabetes in some people. It is the best known secret for curing, if not preventing, many diseases, including some cancers.
  5.  For overweight kids, weight loss programs should involve everyone in the home. How are the kids going to lose weight if you don’t?

The bottom line is that in order to lose weight, there have to be multiple approaches which include: lower food intake (stick with only eating a certain amount of calories per day), exercising, and reducing the amount of sweets/fat.  Lastly, it is not just about dieting; it should be a lifestyle change.


National Institutes Of Health To Spend $1.5 Million To Learn Why Gay Women Are Overweight

March 15th, 2013 - By Ann Brown
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(Press Association via AP Images)

(Press Association via AP Images)

We’re sure this new study is gong to raise a few eyebrows. The National Institutes of Health (NIH) is funding a study to find out why a majority of homosexual women are overweight, reports The Washington Times. The group is spending $1.5 million in order to determine why nearly three-quarters of adult gay women are overweight or obese, compared to half of straight women.

The study will examine biological and social factors and will be conducted by Brigham and Women’s Hospital in Boston. The two grants were administered by NIH’s Eunice Kennedy Shriver National Institute of Child Health and Human Development (NICHD) to study the relationship between sexual orientation and obesity.

While this study has been planned according to the NICHD, its future is uncertain because of the sequester.

“The NIH is currently assessing the impact on funding due to sequestration,” said Robert Bock, press officer for the NICHD.  “It is not possible to say how this (or any other NIH grant) will be affected in the long term beyond the 90 percent funding levels already in place.”

But according to Bock, the issue is an important one. “Obesity is a serious public health problem affecting a large proportion of the U.S. population,” Bock said.  “The study is examining reasons why the risk of obesity varies according to sexual orientation, in order to inform the development of future strategies to prevent obesity.”

The outcome of the study may shed light on obesity trends in general—even in the minority community. “Our study has high potential for public health impact not only for sexual minorities, Bock continued, but also for straight men and gay women “as we seek to uncover how processes of gender socialization may exacerbate obesity risk.”