I am a very old, fat guy. I have always thought of myself as fat. I was the first one to reach 100 lbs in the fourth grade. My mother was a very fat woman. My father was a wisp of a man. He died at 45 years old, and my mother lived until she was 90 years old. Have I suffered because I am fat? You better believe it! However, I will say this. When I graduated from high school I was 184 lbs. I thought I was fat. When I was inducted into the military it was never an issue, even though the other 54% were rejected that month for various reasons including health. So I was not really fat, even by today's BMI standards. I was discharged at 215 lbs, now that was overweight. I went back into the military Nurse Corps some seven years later. I was 234 lbs and got down to 200 lbs and a 34 inch waist a year later. Again this whole time I thought of myself as fat. Over the next 16 years I gained on average 10 lbs a year and became 365 lbs in 1992. That was my heaviest. I am now 340 lbs and have maintained it for some 12 years. My issue is that if you are of normal weight now, do not let it go. Be glad and think of it as a gift that must be maintained and cared for. Weight gain is insidious, and will happen consistently if you do not watch it relentlessly. My three sons are horrified about my weight, and have not gained significantly over the years. My daughter went my route, and is struggling with her weight constantly.
I had tried to loose weight several time over the years and went on Weight Watchers, Nutri System, TOPS, and even the all liquid, doctor monitored, Medifast diet. I had lost about 50 lbs each time, and just could not maintain it. Only to gain it back again in less than a year. Then I read an extensive article in Time Magazine. It had shown that no matter what system was used to loose weight only about 3% kept it off for more than five years. That's when I stopped trying. Since then I have been told to loose 100 lbs for a hip replacement to be preformed. I looked into the Bariatric surgery and found that consistently people who had it done were happy with it for 7 years. but that most had regained the weight back in for those who had it over 11 years ago or more.
I personally worked with 4 nurses who had it done, and three of the four had regained all the weight back by the time I knew them. My son went to medical school with the guy who is now in charge of this surgery in the local medical center. He hates me being so fat, and wants me to have it done. My daughter was 325 lbs when she had it done in 2004. I had advised against it, but she did it anyway. I must admit she was very determined, with gym visits and all. She went down to 147 lbs in less then 2 years. Now her last admitted weight was 247 lbs. Go figure!
When I saw a TV presentation investigating prejudice I was stunned to see that beyond gender, beyond race, weight was the worst prejudice. Now in the United States the latest figure on obesity is 72% for men and 64% for women. So how can these feelings of prejudice exist if most of the people in this country are overweight.
I have not figured that out, unless you begin to to realize that people are people all over the world, and most of them are insecure. Even the ones who appear to be very secure they are frequently feeling superior, to hide true feelings of inferiority. Even a narcissist is deeply troubled inside about the reality of his own superiority. He acts supremely superior, and truly believes he is, therefore his recidivism is almost 100% as he is unlikely to even seek psychological help, as he knows more then the psychologist ever will. I think this is an inherited state, but it is a difficult one to deal with. Although only 1% of the population have a true Narcissistic Personality Disorder there are so many people we meet every day who harbor these feelings and are searching for the faults of others to bolster their own feelings of insecurity.
In Nursing there was a an axiom that "Nurses eat their young." That is explained as the concept that many nurses are insecure in what they do, because they are constantly being chided by more experienced nurses about their own short comings and faults. So they are poised to to watch the new nurse to pounce on her, and make her feel inadequate. This bolsters their own pride and hopefully distracts any observations of their own dysfunction. This is a source of constant stress in Nursing. Stress makes us overeat, smoke, and do other unhealthy things.
So what to do about weight? Well Weight Watchers was shown consistently to be the best program for loosing weight. Will it work. Yes it will. Yet, if you are not truly dedicated you will gain it back consistently. What about pills and other drugs they are an over the counter and are part of the 150 billion dollar boondoggle being pulled over on the American people. Other prescription drugs for weight loss have been a miserable failure too. The "Phen Phen" fiasco back in the 90's cause hundreds to damage their heat valves, and some even died. One poor nurse I worked with took her aunts script for Alli. When she was racing around the ER with her white scrubs on when another nurse told her that she must be having her period, as she had stained her pants with the "blood." It wasn't blood it was diarrhea. The fat blocking drug had caused her to have a BM she was not even aware of. So try being in love with yourself, whatever you look like, that is a direct proclivity for overall health, both mental and physical. Is it healthy to be overweight? No! We all know diabetes, heart disease, stroke, and a host of other diseases are more prevalent in the obese. Yet here again, if you are to make it to 80 years old being a bit overweight gives you less mortality potential then if you are rail thin. Enjoy being YOU! You are your own best friend.