That’s what Jane Brody writes about our weight.
Because, by 2030, nearly one in two adults will be obese; in some states one in four severely so, she says.
Some other scary facts cited in her article for the New York Times:
- In as many as 29 states, the prevalence of obesity will exceed 50 percent.
- Severe obesity will become the most common weight category among women, non-Hispanic black adults and low-income adults nationally.
- Don’t blame genetics; they haven’t changed. But what has changed is the environment in which our genes now function.
What this all means is that we are going to be facing not just obesity, but the fall-out from it, including many chronic, disabling and often fatal diseases which can lead to further health complications, like heart disease and stroke, high blood pressure, type-2 diabetes, some cancers, breathing problems, osteoarthritis and more.
The climbing rate of obesity in our country can be blamed on so many things. Most obvious is the fact that we’re consuming more than we’re burning off (the old “calories in, calories out” equation)). Not enough of us are getting adequate exercise (or any at all). We are sitting for too many hours spent commuting… then working at our desks… then on the couch once home, too exhausted to move.
Add to that the fact that food is relatively cheap and easy to access, especially convenience foods that are high in fat, sugar and salt. Portions are growing larger and confusing the eye – and brain, (Here’s how to tell the difference between a portion size and a serving.) And we’re snacking more, many times mindlessly and excessively. (A good reminder to curb that: Don’t snack out of the bag. Instead, dole out a serving and put. the. bag. away. FAR away.)
If you are trying to lose weight, be cautious of the diet you choose. Many of the popular trendy diets will fail, because they’re not sustainable in the long-run. Many people will lose weight – initially – but then gain it back, often ending up heavier than when they first began. To make things worse, many of these diets eliminate essential nutrients – or entire food groups – that your body needs to stay strong and healthy.
Over the years, I’ve interviewed dozens of experts on this topic, and the one comment that sticks in my mind is from Scott Kahan, MD, the director of the National Center for Weight and Wellness in Washington D.C. When I asked him to let me in on a little secret (the same one we all want to know), this is how the conversation went:
Q. What is the BEST diet?
A. It’s the one you will STICK TO.
If you want to find out which diets work – and are healthy for you, read my recent article in Parade Magazine, The Best Diets to Manage Your Weight After 50.