obesity and bigotry

Being fat is no different from having brown or blue eyes and a wicked throw or an amazing singing voice.

That wisdom from this editorial. While I agree with the idea that prejudice or harsh treatment of overweight people is unfortunate, being fat is different than having brown eyes or a wicked throw. It’s a largely avoidable menace to our health and our healthcare system.

Society has worked hard to eliminate bigotry like this, yet overweight people are assaulted every day with messages — overt and unspoken — that they are defective and in need of fixing. What 50 years ago was a schoolyard taunt is now a national obsession.

Now that most adults in the US are overweight or obese, we need to turn the focus on the causes of obesity (excessive consumption of sugar or other high-glycemic carbohydrates) and the solution (public education on high glycemic, processed foods and their long-term impact). Focusing on bigotry is a distraction and not a solution.

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