Why I Think A Healthy/Unhealthy Lifestyle As One's Personal, Conscious Choice Is Bullsh**

Why I Think A Healthy/Unhealthy Lifestyle As One's Personal, Conscious Choice Is Bullsh**

Many people believe that choosing a healthy lifestyle is a personal, individual choice, and that, likewise, choosing an unhealthy lifestyle is a personal, individual choice. The problem with this belief is that it overestimates the power of free will. Overestimating free will is unrealistic, because real people are constrained by their resources and situation. Overestimating free will is harmful, because it puts too much pressure on the individuals themselves to change instead of looking at the situation collectively. In this myTake, I will explain why I think a healthy/unhealthy lifestyle as one's personal, conscious choice is bullshit.

Culture and Tradition

I argue that humans are mostly cultural beings. They behave according to culture and tradition. When I was a toddler, my father found a job in the States. A year later, my mother and I joined him. My parents continued to live according to their cultural background, because they were familiar with it, but they nevertheless learned how to adapt to American ways. If you want to learn more about life with Chinese immigrant parents, then you should watch Off The Great Wall on YouTube. The channel is a satirical take on the behavior of Chinese immigrant parents and their offspring. Of course, individuals in any culture have idiosyncratic differences, but it is the similarities that trigger the generalizations.


- Big money savers . . . to the extreme

One big running gag in the Off The Great Wall channel is that Chinese immigrant parents don't use the dishwasher. The dishwasher could be used for anything but its intended purpose. My parents are no different. My mother once complained that the dishwasher was useless, because the grease and food particles were still there after washing. She maintained that only people have eyes and can wash dishes efficiently.

While grocery shopping, my parents are expert bargain hunters. They have a collection of grocery stores and the average prices of fresh produce in their heads. On top of that, they check their mailbox for the weekly ads of their favorite stores. Sometimes, what's advertised on a weekly ad is not really on sale, and they know this, because they have memorized the typical price at a specific store. Prices for fresh fruits and vegetables tend to fluctuate among different stores and seasons of the year. When the price seems like a good bargain (and they'd know this by mentally calculating the unit prices), they would buy more of that fruit or vegetable. Therefore, we always had various kinds of vegetables and fruits throughout the year. This behavior of bargain-hunting for cheap fruits and vegetables is more of an effort to save money than an effort to "vary your veggies" (a recommended USDA and FDA guideline in the new Food Pyramid, not the one I was taught in the mid-to-late 1990s and early-to-mid 2000s).

When I was in primary school, my parents gave me just enough money to buy lunch. $1.25. Indeed, that was just enough money to buy lunch, not the slushie or the cheesy nachos. At the time, I really wanted a slushie or cheesy nacho, but I didn't have any extra money. So, the only thing I could do was watch my classmates enjoy their nacho bowl or slushie cup. The unintended consequence was that it reduced my portion size of eating processed food.

Why I Think A Healthy/Unhealthy Lifestyle As One's Personal, Conscious Choice Is Bullsh**

- Semi-literacy of English words

As non-native English speakers, my parents tend to avoid foods that they do not recognize and tend to place more value on the overall product than the brand name or even the Nutrition Facts label. This usually means not buying foods that seem unnaturally colored. I remember going to the store with my parents and pointing my little fingers at the Snack-Pack Jell-O, but my parents gazed at the chocolate and vanilla pudding variants and went for the white vanilla pudding one. I didn't like vanilla pudding. I thought it was too sweet for my liking. I never asked for Jell-O again. However, their semi-literacy skills could only offer a limited level of protection of buying healthier foods.

As a more English-literate and health-literate person, I read the Nutrition Facts label and check out what's exactly in the product they are buying. Sometimes, they would buy a certain type of dried tofu, and I would pick the low-sodium, low-monosodium-glutamate variant.

My parents had a habit of shopping at Asian supermarkets in addition to mainstream American supermarkets, because Asian supermarkets provided familiar-looking food products. They could recognize a big Napa cabbage or Bok Choy. They knew what the vegetables tasted like, and they knew how to prepare the vegetables.

Why I Think A Healthy/Unhealthy Lifestyle As One's Personal, Conscious Choice Is Bullsh**

- Peculiar folk beliefs regarding health

My mother may be educated as an ophthalmologist in China, doing reparative and cosmetic surgical operations on the eyes, but somehow she also retains some knowledge of traditional Chinese medicine from who-knows-where. I am not sure whether that is learned in families or in university, but here are some things I've learned from her.

* Never mix warm foods and cold foods together. My mother would always tell me that after you eat a warm supper, you have to wait a while before you can put in something cold; otherwise, you will get an upset stomach or even diarrhea. That's as far as my mother would go in regards to warm and cold foods. Like I said, she practiced modern medicine, so she's somewhat skeptical of traditional Chinese medicine herself.

* In Chinese medicine, the sick body must be cleared of internal heat or detoxified. Eating celery is believed to do that. Though, to be honest, I am not sure if that means Western celery or Chinese celery. My father told me that he once suffered from high blood pressure as a child. So, a friend recommended his barely literate parents that he should consume Chinese celery. I think my mother also has the belief in celery to lower high blood pressure. Consuming mung bean soup is also believed to clear internal heat. Mung bean soup was used to treat my nosebleeds when I was a child.

Why I Think A Healthy/Unhealthy Lifestyle As One's Personal, Conscious Choice Is Bullsh**

- Priority of foods

No meal is complete without rice. Rice must be on the table. No exceptions. I think the emphasis on rice shapes the perception of sustenance food and snack food. Anything that does not complement with rice on the table is automatically labelled as "snack food". This may include chips, candy, sweet pastries, French fries, hamburgers, and other types of high-calorie food products. I think labelling something as "snack food" leads to the perception that something is "in excess" or "extra". Too many of these "extra" things in life is unhealthy and unbalanced.

Why I Think A Healthy/Unhealthy Lifestyle As One's Personal, Conscious Choice Is Bullsh**

- Guilt

Guilt comes in, when people go against their conscience. However, the nature of that guilt, I believe, is different, and can manifest itself in different ways. For a typical American who diets, there is guilt associated with eating junk food. This guilt is deeply personal, and the person regrets for making such a decision. To deal with the guilt, some people develop eating disorders, a negative self-image, and low self-esteem. All of this is focused on the self. On the flip side, some people deal with the guilt in a healthy manner by forgiving oneself and moving on. This way of dealing with guilt is healthier and goes with the individualistic spirit.

Why I Think A Healthy/Unhealthy Lifestyle As One's Personal, Conscious Choice Is Bullsh**

For me, guilt does not revolve around food at all. It revolves around relationships.

There was one time in elementary school when I asked my mother for lunch money. But she told me to look in the closet for quarters. In the closet, there was a cup sitting on the shelf with a lot of quarters. Lunch was $1.25, which meant 5 quarters. Although I could take more quarters than I needed to buy lunch and the slushie/nacho, I reasoned that I couldn't. First of all, it would be too dishonest, and I would feel guilty that I would have to lie to my parents that I spent more than $1.25 on food. Second of all, I knew there was a finite number of quarters. If I used too many quarters on one day, then I would have less quarters to spend on following days, and I didn't want to go hungry. To make the quarters go the extra mileage, I had to use exactly the amount I needed -- $1.25. So, I always took 5 quarters out of that cup, and in a way, I restrained my own spending and eating behaviors. But health was not really the primary intention.

When I was 8-10 years old, my family went to the local farm to pick farm-fresh fruits and vegetables in the fields. My parents probably chose the place, because they liked the cheap prices by the pound. They just had to harvest the fruits and vegetables themselves. At the farm, there was a snow cone stand. I asked my mom for one, and she bought it for me. The second time we went there, I asked again, but she said no. Instead, she literally requested a snow cone without any flavoring. Although that certainly did ruin my appetite for snow cones, I am now very thankful about that, because I have recently found out that food dyes are very unhealthy. Thanks, Mom!

Sometimes, my family and another family went to the said farm together. One day, that family brought a plate of appetizers. I decided to try one. When I returned home, my mother scolded me for my behavior. She used the word, "馋", which referred to my gluttonous food craving. She said that my behavior made me look like a beggar's child who wasn't well fed at home. I think, in Chinese culture, Chinese people value being well-fed. Affluent people are more well fed than impoverished people, so they are extremely humble about food intake from other people.

This becomes interpreted as good manners, because it shows that person comes from a wealthy family. In addition, Chinese eating etiquette requires the diner to eat less than what the host serves. If the diner eats everything on the plate, then that suggests that the host is not serving enough food, which in turn puts a greater burden on the host to make more food. In good taste, the diner must eat less than what he is served. Good health implies that a person has proper upbringing, righteousness, and social status; it's not necessarily an individual's conscious, personal choice.

Why I Think A Healthy/Unhealthy Lifestyle As One's Personal, Conscious Choice Is Bullsh**

- Allowance

Off The Great Wall mentions that Chinese parents don't typically give out allowance money, like American parents do. In that regard, my parents never gave me any money for doing household chores. I think that the refusal for giving allowance money is a manifestation that Chinese parents value familial interdependency more than they value personal independence. When my parents were children, older siblings took care of younger siblings, and all the children helped their mother with the housework.

Though, a slightly more richer family would hire a live-in servant to do the menial tasks. Similarly, many Chinese parents pay their children's college tuition in full, so that their children could walk out of college debt-free. That's just another example of familial interdependency over personal independence. The side consequence of not receiving allowance money really cuts into how much I can spend on "snack foods" outside the home and thus the amount of calories I would consume in a day.

Why I Think A Healthy/Unhealthy Lifestyle As One's Personal, Conscious Choice Is Bullsh**

Processed Foods

I think I started eating more processed food in greater quantities in middle school. At the time, my mother found a full-time job, so I was left home, alone. For after-school snacks, I ate canned or prepackaged meals. Sometimes, I forgot the key, so I went to the lease office to borrow the key. There, I found out about free cookies and took one regularly. In high school, lunch money was placed on my student ID card, but then I started to buy the cookies. My favorite ones were the double chocolate and macadamia nut cookies. I joined chess club.

The combination of sitting and munching on free leftover pizza donated from the cafeteria probably made me fat over time. During my first year of university, I brought home-cooked foods again. They were usually last night's dinner leftovers. I didn't have any money to buy food in the vending machines or the cafeterias, so when I was thirsty, I just drank free water in the water fountain. For some reason, the water in the water fountain always tasted better and more neutral than the unboiled water in the sink. The combination of portioned home-cooked foods and walking/running all around campus probably made me lose a significant and noticeable amount of weight.

Why I Think A Healthy/Unhealthy Lifestyle As One's Personal, Conscious Choice Is Bullsh**

Biological Limitations

It is common knowledge that if you eat more than you need, then you will gain weight. However, this belief fails to consider that people have finite capacity to store food. During the process of eating, the brain will tell the person to stop eating. So, the only way to gain weight is to eat calorie-dense foods. The belief also fails to consider that some people have a much bigger appetite than others. For some people, they persistently eat a small amount of food to feel full and have to consciously eat more food to gain weight. For other people, they persistently eat a large amount of food to feel full and have to consciously eat less food to lose weight. In addition, the intention of eating more may backfire, because the body may refuse to admit any more food and will force the person to vomit. The uncomfortable feeling of sickness teaches the person a lesson about how much food he/she can take in. On the flip side, some people have massive food cravings and probably a lot of money in their wallets, so they can buy a lot of foods and eat all of them in a short time period.

There was one time when I went to my father's office in the college campus and told him that I didn't have my lunch box with me. So, my father and I went to Wendy's, which was located in the hospital building next door. I wanted to order something really special and big, so I ordered #3 on the menu with a small fries, a coke product, and a baked potato. We carried the food products back to my father's office, and I gobbled the food products all by myself. By the time I finished, I felt uncomfortably full. Although I didn't vomit, the experience made me aware of how much I really could eat in a sitting.

Why I Think A Healthy/Unhealthy Lifestyle As One's Personal, Conscious Choice Is Bullsh**

Personal Preferences and Money

Many energy-dense foods tend to be very sweet. If you like sweet things and can buy them, then you can gain weight very easily. Economically, demand for a product comes from a desire for the product, the willingness to buy the product, and the ability to buy the product. If there is no desire or willingness, then the product is a waste of money. If you have the desire but you can't afford it, then the product is beyond grasp.

For me, I do find moderately sweet foods tolerable. However, if I had a choice between something savory and something sweet, then I would go for the savory food over the sweet food. It may be that I naturally do not like sweet food, or it may be that my personal upbringing has made me adverse to sweet food. Either way, excessive weight gain is possible, if I consume large quantities of salty food. But as food costs money, I would have to buy a relatively small amount of salty food regularly to cause a very slow weight gain. It's the economics, not personal choice for healthy living, that makes a person fat or fit.

Why I Think A Healthy/Unhealthy Lifestyle As One's Personal, Conscious Choice Is Bullsh**

Portion Size and Food Quantity

Without a doubt, the American portion size for meals is relatively bigger than that of other nations. When I ate home-cooked baozi (a type of steamed bun with filling) or mantou (a type of steamed bun without filling) prepared by my mother, the individual pieces were smaller than my palm. When I ate a bagel in a coffee shop, the bagel was about a fourfold greater than my mom's bun. The bagel would usually have a hole in the middle, but the hole was so tiny that it didn't even count as a hole.

When I ate rice porridge for breakfast, it was mostly water. When my family transitioned to oatmeal because of a belief that the oatmeal was heart-healthy, it was prepared in the same way as rice porridge. I tried to prepare the oatmeal according to the instructions on the package. I thought it was not bad, but my parents hated it and thought I prepared the oatmeal improperly. The main reason was that the oatmeal was too thick. Later, we always ate our oatmeal porridge like rice porridge, with a higher water-to-grain ratio. Coincidentally, the food quantity was considerably less, and the oatmeal could last a long time in the pantry. On top of that, the oatmeal was usually eaten by itself or with savory things, even though there was one time when I sprinkled dried cranberries in the porridge.

Why I Think A Healthy/Unhealthy Lifestyle As One's Personal, Conscious Choice Is Bullsh**

Conclusion

The belief that a healthy lifestyle or unhealthy lifestyle is a personal, conscious choice is definitely false. There are so many conditions and variables involved in a healthy lifestyle or unhealthy lifestyle. We should not blame the individuals themselves for "choosing to eat an unhealthy diet"; and we should be wary about praising individuals for "choosing to eat a very healthy diet". How much personal choice and free will is there when the environment predisposes us to be healthy or unhealthy?

That said, I am not saying that people are completely helpless in their own environment. Instead, I am merely saying that we should look at the whole situation and what are the many factors that cause unwanted weight gain in people. Doing so will hopefully bring down the negative stereotypes of obese people as lazy and stupid. Currently, the MyPlate model, created by the United States Department of Agriculture, is a progressive guideline for eating healthy and adding moderately or vigorously physical activities into daily life. At the same time, it includes the importance of creating a healthy food culture. Like I said, humans are mostly cultural beings. If the food culture is healthy, if families make healthy food choices, then that puts less stress on individuals to live a healthy lifestyle. The individuals may just conform to the culture instead of consciously making a difficult, life-changing choice with so many commitments and no support from family or friends.

Why I Think A Healthy/Unhealthy Lifestyle As One's Personal, Conscious Choice Is Bullsh**
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Most Helpful Girl

  • StewieRH
    Nice take! You make some good points.

    I've always tried to eat healthy, even when I was little. I remember learning about eating 5-a-day when it came to fruits and vegetables so told my mum and was trying to do this, but she told me maybe it was better to just eat "3-a-day" otherwise I might be "Bad on the toilet". I remember also reaching for fruits like apples and bananas but then my Mum thinking I should eat more starchy foods so suggesting I eat cake instead. Then if I was eating too many junk foods, my mum would encourage me to go for healthier foods instead and limit me to having no more than 2 packs of crisps a day.

    Last year I tried eating healthier too, and it seemed to be going well at first.. but then my Dad kept buying all these junk foods like crisps, and cakes and chocolate, and encouraging me to eat it and being disappointed when I didn't eat some unhealthy snack he'd got me. Thing is, if unhealthy foods are in the house, you tend to go for them more because they're there - If you're hungry, fancy a snack food and the only things you can find are chocolate, crisps, and cake, you are going to eat chocolate, crisps or cake. Now if you want a snack food and the only things you can find are fruit, yoghurt and nuts, you are going to eat fruit, yoghurt or nuts.

    Another problem with me trying to eat healthier or simply eat less, is that my mum and boyfriend don't think I need to, and so worry that I am too skinny and try and encourage me to eat more.

    I am currently low in several vitamins such as B12, vitamin D and Folic Acid, though have been prescribed vitamin D capsules, Folic Acid tablets and have B12 injections every 3 months.

    The problem could simply be that I cannot absorb B12, but as for being low on the other vitamins? Perhaps I am not eating the right foods though I do try to.

    Like you say, money can also be a factor and I only get £10 a week so I mostly just eat whatever my parents have in the house. They are sorting out my benefits soon though so maybe I can get my own food.

    I also think like you say, just the way your body works can be a factor in how much you weigh. Some people gain weight more easily because of a slow metabolism and others lose weight more quickly because of a faster metabolism. Another thing to take into account would be that some people are allergic to certain foods or simply don't get on with them. I myself, often feel bloated for ages after eating certain foods, and have to wait for food to cool down before eati
    Is this still revelant?

Most Helpful Guy

  • Fathoms77
    So... nobody has a brain of their own and will forever be a victim of their environment? They can't learn the facts for themselves and find a way to fix and care for themselves? This is all impossible because of various cultural and biological hurdles? Those who educated themselves on how to live a healthy lifestyle are just "lucky" and those who choose not to do so can claim the excuse of environment, and therefore the rest of us must find a way to care for that person?

    Wow. Talk about bullsh**.
    Is this still revelant?
    • Anonymous

      Read the final paragraph. The purpose is to create a healthy food culture.

    • Fathoms77

      Sorry, can't agree. It isn't a stereotype to say that most overweight people are lazy or less educated than others, because most are. It's far more dangerous to cater to the very small percentage who are more a victim of their environment than themselves.

      My response is more to the title, which is just dead wrong. Your health is your own responsibility, we all have free will, and we can all improve ourselves and overcome that which might be toxic in our environments. In fact, we have no excuse not to as functioning adults once we're grown up (and our parents and families are no longer dictating).

    • Anonymous

      Too many times I've seen on YouTube of people who try to go on diets. When they go on a diet, they go on a diet by themselves. One lady went on the NutriSystem diet for herself and had to make ADDITIONAL food for her family. Do you really think this "personal choice" of being healthy is efficient? No. It's a waste of money on herself in expense of the health of her family.

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What Girls & Guys Said

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  • Ratiocinative
    Wow. This is definitely the one of the dumbest things I've ever heard anyone say.

    Yes, your upbringing is very important. If your parents don't teach you something as a child it is much harder to learn as an adult, but that doesn't mean you can't.

    I agree that weight loss is a lot more complicated than simply choosing to eat healthier. Human behavior is governed largely by habits that we have formed in the past, and if you try to use will power to consciously override those habits you will most certainly fail.

    To successfully change your behavior you need form new habits to overwrite the old bad habits. For example, what do you do when you're bored? Or stressed? Or tired? For a lot of people, they deal with boredom and stress and tiredness by eating. Thus their efforts to eat healthy and lose weight will fail because they will eventually run out of will power.

    Instead you need to establish a new pattern. Bored? Go for a drive. Stressed? listen to music. Tired? Go to bed earlier. Sometimes you might have to simply make a life change. If your job is constantly stressing you out, then you might just need to get a new job.

    When you're in a building there's a fire escape plan. In the event of a fire, it tells you exactly what you're going to do. Everyone should also have an emergency plan for dealing with negative emotions. If you don't have a plan for what you're going to do next time you're bored, you're going to default back to your old destructive habits.
    • Anonymous

      Just read the final paragraph. I think the title throws people off and makes people get the wrong message. I should have added "entirely". "Why I Think A Healthy/Unhealthy Lifestyle Is Not Entirely A Personal, Conscious Choice." If you read the final paragraph, I talk about creating a healthy food culture.

  • TheWaterBear
    While yes, going to eat fast food is a personal choice, and the blame of getting fat should fall on the person who chooses to do it... the issue is more complicated than that. For over 50 years, the government pushed a high carb, low fat diet based on the flawed study by Ancel Keys (which showed that the more saturated fat a country eats, the higher the incidence of heart disease is for that country... the problem is that there were 29 countries in the study, and his report quoted 7 of them that showed a nice graph curve. When all 29 countries are added to the graph, it's all over the place, showing no correlation). Over those 50 years, heart disease and obesity have skyrocketed.

    All those people thought they were eating healthy by following the government-created food pyramid. Is it their fault? No, they were duped. Look at today's big agriculture pushing high fructose corn syrup as being "healthy." The FDA, if it was doing its job, should have banned it in the interest of public health. Instead, they turn a blind eye because of all the money donated to government by big agriculture. Most people don't bother to research how bad processed food is. I'm normally not a fan of big government, but if we're going to have it, we might as well force them to actually protect the PEOPLE of our country instead of pander to special interests.
    • Anonymous

      The government changed the food pyramid. Now, it's MyPlate. I guess you could say that's high in carbs, because 75% of the plate seems to be plant-based. The other 25% is the protein source, which may be plant-based or animal-based. And there is the dairy product, represented by the cup. Though, I think MyPlate is influenced by European-American diet, which contains dairy products. Europeans consume more dairy products, because they have evolved to do so.

    • If it's still low-fat, then it's still just as bad as it was before.

    • The French for many years ate a high-fat diet (cheese, etc), and had a very low rate of heart disease. In recent years, they have broken down and started eating a lower fat diet that is more like the US, and... surprise, surprise, heart disease is going up.

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  • Dtegesd123
    I get why you had to eat processed foods like canned meat. Salty food doesn't make you fat, it just makes you hold more water weight.
    But yeah if there is free unhealthy food, i don't blame someone from eating it. Especially if they do not have as much money.

    However, no one ever got obese from eating one large pizza a day ( 2500 - 3000 calories). It's from a conscious choice to eat until stuffed, then eat some more!
    • Anonymous

      Eating after feeling stuffed will just cause the person feel distended, uncomfortable, and sick enough to vomit everything out. That's usually the case in real people I know. I knew this six-year-old girl. Her mom took her to a buffet and told her to not eat anything at home so she could store more food in her belly at the buffet. So, the girl ate and ate, and vomited all over the place. I think the same thing happens when I get overstuffed. Real people get sick and will vomit.

      Your belief is counter-intuitive and unrealistic. Yet, I think too many people believe this is the case. It reminds me of a person on Reddit who says that she never gets fat because she eats processed food "until she gets full". The implication is that she thinks fat people get fat, because they overstuff themselves. That is far from the case.

  • Relentless_Hippie
    This was dumb and the entire beginning of this take involving your family has absolutely nothing to do with anything and was a complete and utter waste of time. Grown adults have control over what they choose to put into their bodies. Those are the people who are criticized for their lifestyles as they should be.

    Growing up in a family that ate unhealthy isn't an excuse to continue to do the same, the adult continuing on in that lifestyle is at fault because it's their own choice. Same thing with any negative influence growing up like alcohol, abuse, drugs, etc.

    Stop making excuses for people, and let grown adults be treated like grown adults. That's the problem with this world. It's everybody else's fault but our own.
    • Anonymous

      No, it's the little things in people's childhoods that make people the way they are. And when they are grown and make their own decisions, they subconsciously use the same lifestyle habits. They have to make conscious effort with a lot of commitments to make a total, healthy lifestyle change. In short, just read the final paragraph.

    • Anonymous

      "They" in the last sentence refers to people who grow up with unhealthy food and eating habits.

    • Stop right there. Do you see what you just said?
      "They have to make a CONSCIOUS EFFORT... to make a total healthy lifestyle change."

      What is your take about?
      "Why I Think A Healthy/Unhealthy Lifestyle As One's Personal, Conscious Choice Is Bullsh**

      You JUST said it's a conscious choice. No dip. And that's the point. Your take is about why it being a conscious choice is bull but even you yourself admit that it's a conscious choice. Someone's childhood may influence them as an adult, but it's not an excuse.

      My sister was neglected as a child, she grew up to be a prostitute. Did her childhood influence her outlook on life? Yes. But it was her CHOICE to do the things she does instead of aspiring to be better than that.

      As a kid you have no control over what your home life is like. As an adult you have all the control. Blaming it on your childhood is an excuse for poor behavior and bad decisions. Even you yourself JUST said it's a CONSCIOUS CHOICE.

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  • Kuraj
    Pathetic excuses like these are why 70% of americans are overweight or worse.
    Sure, your environment may affect your lifestyle a little, but if you see yourself in the mirror gaining weight and choose NOT to do anything about it then it is all on you.
    Nobody gets fat by accident.
  • John_Doesnt
    I know from experience with myself and other people that staying healthy is genetic.
    I eat junk and fast food all the time, but the heaviest I've ever been is 150 lbs. But many people try eating nothing but veggies and still can't lose weight.
    It's not fair for you to judge people who have been born with an unfair genetic metabolism.
  • IsraelJordan
    Exercise. I east fast food every day and im not overweight. Exercise.
    • Even though you may not be fat doesn't mean your not unhealthy. Eating fast food everyday is not healthy lol

    • @somebodysaycheese I may be unhealthy but i can still run my 12 min 2 mile so how bad can it be lmao

    • Anonymous

      @somebodysaycheese Eating fast food everyday is typically not a balanced diet, because your body is deficient in nutrients. So, even though the body does not manifest overweightness, the body will show other signs of malnutrition.

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  • phil2
    I am wondering if you are who I think you are? I think that growing up, everyone who only eats during meal times with their parents don't have as much weight problem because there are social person pressure on them from their parents. Just how I think can help kids not get obese.
  • mikemx55
    This is sooo freaking true!! At least while you live with parents, and they provide what the family eats, you're stuck to their choices. It doesn't even matter if you try, they'll suck you in.
  • Heera
    It's normal to teach your kids to eat healthy (depending on what you consifer to be healthy) but as grown ups, people choose what they eat and the ones who want to live a healthy life would most likely read and learn about nutrition. Not to say that not everyone is conservative, there are lots of people willing to try new, healthy foods.
    • Anonymous

      A solid foundation is still important to give children a proper upbringing and a taste of a healthy lifestyle. That way, the children who grow up into adults will not make a difficult, life-changing decision to be healthy, because they have experience with healthy food all their lives. Reading and learning about nutrition are actually cultural, learned habits.

      It's not just the food themselves that make them healthy or unhealthy. It's the eating habits that are learned over time, and habits are difficult to break as an adult. Therefore, a healthy food culture at an early age is very important. Even at a later age, people must work on making their families healthy, not just themselves healthy. Healthy families lead to healthy individuals.

  • sp33d
    "The belief that a healthy lifestyle or unhealthy lifestyle is a personal, conscious choice is definitely false."

    I choose to live healthily while I could easily snatch a large quarterpounder meal with extra chips and ketchup every single day.. I choose not to. What is so mystical about this?
    • Unit1

      That's just you. Other people like me do not have a choice because of limitations commonly associated with money.
      I am for example slightly lightweight and cannot afford enough food to keep me nourished as I need to daily.

    • sp33d

      @Unit1 It's very cheap to satisfy daily nourishment of any human. Common misunderstanding is it's expensive.

    • Unit1

      How much money do you have in mind should be sufficient in order to feed any human in a week? Considering we need vitamins from vegetables and fruits and carbonate hydrates and protein!

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  • FallOutBoy2001
    My boyfriend's family vs mine. The video was the most accurate thing I've ever seen, I could not stop laughing. His parents are from mainland China, mine are from New York and England.
  • sedrftvgyhujik
    For me i put it down to a mix of genetics and playing sport and weight lifting that kept me slim 13%bf.
    I feel unwell if i eat too much sugar or fat and crave something with protein and fruit and veg iv been known to sit in bed working while eating whole lettuces but also to do that with a jar of peanut butter.
    My stomach is also quite bad at telling me when im hungry sometimes im full to the point of literally overflowing and it says keep eating sometimes it grumbles but doesn't make me feel hungry till after I think maybe there's a delay or something?
  • somebodysaycheese
    The problem is ignorance. Most people are ignorant in most things. America is fat because its culture glamorizes large meals and the governement wants people fat. i went back home to Germany this summer. Fruits and vegetables are dirt cheap compared to the US and people dotn excercise. When I was in South Korea for a while people dont work out at all BUT food is cheap and vegetables and fermented foods makeup such a huge portion of their diet. Also, fementation keeps gut bacteria good meaning it keeps your body from inflammation. Which obesity and many health issues are because of inflammation. People have such old school views on health, mental health and obesity that they refuse to be open minded to new findings.
    • Anonymous

      No, I think the bigger portion sizes are a sign of affluence. United States has a very high GDP, which is a metric of wealth and production.

      No, it's a conspiracy theory that the US government wants people fat.

      I contend that there are just not many regulations on the processed food industry. Marketing is aimed at the very young to get them hooked for life, at the expense of their own health and finances.

    • Its not a conspiracy that the US govt wants people fat. If they didn't want people fat they would support small farms but they dont. If they didn't want people fat they wouldn't allow it ot be legal to inject people with things that makes us sick. If they didn't want us to be fat they wouldn't give us anti biotics for everything that lowers gut fat and causes obesity. These aren't conspiracies but facts people are ingorant to.

    • Anonymous

      - Well, at least the government allows businesses to cooperate with local produce farmers. That helps in getting cheap, fresh produce. In my area on one day, I can find various fresh produce for under a dollar. I even wrote a Take about it. www.girlsaskguys.com/.../a30585-the-dollar-menu-that-consists-of-real-food

      - Antibiotics kill microbes. I suppose you mean gut flora, not gut fat. Indeed, lowering gut flora is not healthy. But there are pro-biotics, which introduces gut flora inside the body. You can find them in some kinds of yogurt.

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  • Alex88F
    to each is own. if somebody wants to get super fat fine, but dont ask me to have respect for those just poisoning their brain with cheap ass over fried food or pumping roids to impress girls
    • Anonymous

      Brothers Green Eats is a channel starring two brothers with a passion for cooking. They are self-taught, creative chefs. They are thrifty, resourceful, and innovative. One guy tries to survive on $21 a week, $3 a day, $1 a meal. Both brothers have made college student meals and fast food imitations.

      Check it out: https://www.youtube.com/user/BrothersGreenEats

      They do use a lot of deep-frying, but the rationale is to produce fast food imitations or gourmet home-cooked foods.

    • Alex88F

      how interesting! thank you ! :D

  • It is very easy for an woman to attractive but it is quite difficult for a man to be attractive. When a fat woman loses weight, she will become 50 times more attractive but when a fat man loses weight, it will not make any difference because it is not that easy for a man to be attractive, he is supposed to gain muscle, which is 1000 times more difficult than losing weight actually. Girls are very lucky. It is very easy for them to be attractive. Losing weight is enough for them. How lucky they are.
    • Anonymous

      I have read that biking can slim down the body, lose fat weight, and strengthen the muscle. The body will appear more athletic, because of the skin showing the muscle that the body already has. For a man, he may not be satisfied with just biking, because he will not get the six-pack. So, he has to do weightlifting in order to build muscle. Aesthetics, unfortunately, is one reason why women are discouraged to build muscle, even though they should for their long-term health.

    • The point is, gaining muscle is 1000 times more difficult than losing weight. When you move more and eat less, you will lose weight but it is so fucking difficult to gain muscle.

    • Anonymous

      Look on the bright side. Men naturally have more muscle than women. They can gain lean muscle weight faster than women. :D

    • Show All
  • SnowHearth
    Excuses.
  • Phoenix98
    Lol ok then.
  • Anonymous
    Very true. This must be why some nations have more obese people than others, while some nations are majority slim. I know when I go to my dads country for a while, eating with the family every day and hanging out with my cousins, my body changes.
    • Anonymous

      So, did you become fatter or slimmer? Which country are you talking about?

      If you check out the other responses, then you'd see that some people either do not understand what I am talking about or are completely oblivious about how much the environment affects one's personal choices. People tend to think that free will is totally free, which it isn't.

    • Anonymous

      They just don't get it. Everything is influenced by society, even what we're attracted to. Look how some countries love fat people, and others love slim.. There's a reason different figures and body types are popular in different countries.

      My dads country is Nigeria, mums is Germany, I live in Britain. When I go to Nigeria, my figure is much better it's much more curvy in all the right places but still slimmer at the same time. Just because daily foods are different, and are made differently.
      When I go to Germany where they love real meat and cakes, I get more energy I guess from so much red meat, so I'm a lot more active day to day.
      When I'm in Britain, it's so much processed food, fake meat, rubbish version of everything not much real food.

      It's just easy to eat what everybody around you is eating without even thinking.

    • Anonymous

      Wow. Britain is not much different from America with the abundance of energy-dense manufactured food.

      However, I think one should keep in mind that America and Britain are built on a lot of industry, production, and exports. More affluence means more diseases related to affluence.

  • Anonymous
    Now I want a McD apple pie.

    I am not in great shape but not the worst either at less than 30 BMI. I like my life. Two people who told me to do as they did had interesting ends. One was shot in the back of his head by his wife. And the other skinny guy ended up being found dead in his apartment alone, not sure what he died of but it was a natural death unless he off'ed himself.

    Live your life and I will live mine. I have found recently though that I love making healthy smoothies with a Vitamix. It is changing my eating habits. Food should be enjoyed.
  • Anonymous
    Is it weird that my parents were more like Asian parents even though neither one is Asian? Lol, The video of the Asian parents sound almost like mine, but without the Asian accent. "Stay in school study hard get into good college" about a billion times, yes that is my parents! "You only got B plus on test?" *has aneurysm* "What is this you buy video game? So bad for you!" Ugh. But I digress.

    Your upbringing definitely helped you, many people's upbringing consists of high processed foods, which become habit. Habits are hard to break, but not impossible. Also, having be part of kids upbringing is consciously part of food manufacturers marketing plan. Get em hooked young. In order to create a healthy food culture as you suggested we need to first stand up to the billions of dollars the processed food manufacturers invest in lobbyists, marketing, and advertising which they spend trillions per year on in order to in part create the culture. Another part of the culture is that both parents are usually working 60+ hours a week these days, and as such more young people get their culture from media, TV, social media, ads, etc. Fewer chances for healthy home cooked meals and more chance of unhealthy processed foods.

    It is one part culture conformity, one part habit/addiction. Processed foods and other high energy foods are high in sugar, fat, and or salt. This is intentional to produce a kind of narcotic "high". If you have ever heard of the Documentary "Super Size Me" it goes into some of the narcotic effects of these foods. For instance if you give a neurotransmitter blocking drug to a "chocoholic" (yes there is such a thing!) it stops the "high" they get from eating chocolate, they eat a piece and put the rest down.

    Another problem with the culture is the widespread ignorance that these foods are "ok" and its people's "choice" to eat them. Most people don't realize how dangerous they are. Just an FYI that is how Cigarettes have been marketed to people (at least here in the US) for over a century.
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