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3 Ways that Failed to Solve the Obesity Epidemic - Big Time

Aug 22, 2008
Obesity is an epidemic that will soon be responsible for more deaths every year than any other preventable cause of death. This epidemic has been growing like wildfire over the past two decades, and continues to grow with no end in sight.

There has been three solutions offered and employed to fix the problem. The first one is fad diets. Here is a short list of fad diets you may have heard of before: cabbage diet, grapefruit diet, lazy diet, Atkins diet, 3 day diet, 7 day diet, 30 day diet, chocolate diet, fruit juice diet, low fat diet, South Beach diet, negative calorie diet, six times a day diet, one good meal diet, Hollywood diet, The Zone, Sugar Busters, Carb Addicts, Sugar Addicts, Jenny Craig, Dr. Phil, metabolism diet, protein power, glycemic index diet, fast food diet, Alien diet, etc.

The second common way offered to fix the obesity epidemic is with drugs, a.k.a. diet pills. There are two classes of drugs. They are known as the ever popular All Natural drugs, and the growing in popularity pharmaceutical manufactured drugs.

The third way offered to fix the obesity epidemic is with surgeries such as liposuction and gastric bypass.

Now let's look at the results. We'll start with fad diets. Fad diets usually result in an initial weight loss, followed by a cycle of frustration, loss of motivation, and weight gain. The diets plans do not include how to change behavior, therefore they fail. In order for an individual to achieve permanent weight loss they must change their 'frame of mind'. These fad diets do not do this.

How about drugs? Let's start with the all natural pills, drinks, powders, etc. One of the biggest money making marketing tactics over the past 10 years has been to attach the words "All Natural" to everything. For some crazy reason people think that just because something is from nature that it is, not only not harmful, but good for you. In addition, for this marketing technique to be really effective it must attack everything else as being a harmful chemical. You hear this all the time being stated as, Don't put those chemicals into your body, instead use this all natural substance. The whole thing is not based on any truth and potentially very dangerous.

First of all, everything is a chemical. Have you every tried dihydrogen oxide? Dihydrogen oxide sounds like a pretty serious chemical doesn't it. Well its common name is water. Life cannot exist without water. However, if you drink too much water you will die from water toxicity. Of course water can be toxic. Anything can be toxic, and everything is a chemical.

Would you eat arsenic, plutonium, mercury, or lead? Why not, they are all natural. Each one is a fundamental element found in nature. If you're really interested in getting some arsenic you can find it in apple seeds. Do you know how many deadly poisons are produced in nature by plants alone? Many of your backyards are full of them.

The bottom line is that it is insane and very dangerous to think something is good for you and not harmful just because it can be found naturally. Do not let the all natural marketing tactic ever persuade you again! You know what I say about the All Natural diet pills and all the other all natural marketing that is promoted by the powerful multi-billion dollar health industry - caveat emptor which means buyer beware.

Are the pharmaceutical manufactured diet pills any better? Since weight loss is a multi-billion dollar industry, everyone wants to be involved. Big pharmaceutical companies are no different. They have big budgets earmarked for weight loss research and development. Their goal is to find a chemical that can be taken by overweight and obese individuals that will result in weight loss.

This all sounds reasonable, but here is why this hasn't led to solving the obesity epidemic. The studies are limited to a relatively small sample of the population. Just because there was positive results and seemingly no harmful side effects to this relatively small segment of the population does not mean it is going to be safe and effective for the population at large. Everyone is physiologically and genetically different. There are too many differences between people in the general population for one drug to be safe and effective for everyone.

Have you ever heard of Fen-Phen? Fen-Phen is a combination treatment of two drugs Fenfluramine and Dexfenfluramine that was designed and touted as an effective and safe weight loss medicine. Well it wasn't long before physiological difference among the population popped up, and the FDA was bombarded with reports of Fen-Phen causing heart valve disease. The final result, Fen-Phen was taken off the market, big law suits ensued, people were physically damaged, and obesity is still an epidemic.

The third unsuccessful attempt at curing the obesity epidemic is through surgeries, such as liposuction and gastric bypass. Liposuction is a surgery where fat is sucked out from where it accumulates under the skin. This sounds pretty cool except for the fact that it is not a permanent solution. As soon as the individual begins to take in more energy than is being used their body very efficiently begins to make brand new fat cells to store the excess energy. In other words, this 'solution' ain't going to last long if the eating behavior that got them to this point in the place is resumed after the surgery. Liposuction is merely a temporary solution.

Gastric Bypass is an extreme surgery that basically removes and re-routes portions of your digestive tract to physically limit the amount of food that can be consumed and absorbed. This surgery is extreme, painful, and very dangerous, as numerous people have died from the surgery itself. If the surgery is successful, the individual does usually lose weight. They lose weight because they are physically limited to what they can eat. If they overeat, which often means more than a few tablespoons of food at a time, they will vomit it up.

One problem that arises is that it is difficult to get proper nutrient absorption. In addition, what happens is that, through force feeding, the digestive tract grows to accommodate larger and larger amounts of food. Before not too long these individuals can eat as much as they had in the past, which translates into gaining all the weight back. Gastric bypass, by itself, is not a permanent solution.

What do all these Solutions have in common? They are all a quick fix, they require very little effort on the part of the person attempting to lose weight, someone else is making money, and they are not effective in producing permanent weight loss.

H.G. Wells said that human history becomes more and more a race between education and catastrophe. I hate to say it but I think our education system is losing. We need change! If we are going to conquer this epidemic, we need to start doing things differently. We cannot attack this problem as we have been, because it obviously is just not working.
About the Author
Professor Jay has been teaching college nutrition and health for 13 years. He has an earned graduate degree from NYU where he mastered human physiology. As a service to the community he offers a Free comprehensive diet plan. Visit http://www.Secretloss.com
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